6 Tips to Have a Great Conversation

Communication is an activity which every living being in the world performs. Animals and plants communicate among themselves through actions and stimulus. Communication and conversations are inevitable parts of human life. We, humans, have got the gift language using which we can make conversations and communicate with each other. A conversation is one of the basic things that human beings need to do to survive and live together in a community.

Linda Lambert once said, “One good conversation can shift the direction of change forever.” It means a  conversation can be so impactful that its effect lasts forever. A good conversation is one that not only conveys the message but also leaves scope for feedback.
People, today, find it hard to have a good conversation. This is because our brain has been wired in such a way that it stops us from understanding an opposing point of view because of which we turn eager to react. Calmness and patience are the core values to have a meaningful conversation. A good conversation is not restrictive in nature. It allows flexibility to express opinions freely. It gives us the freedom to communicate. 

Here are some tips to have a good conversation:

1. Be brave enough to start a conversation.

The way conversation begins is essential to determine how the rest of the conversation goes. When the other person looks up to your courage and confidence to start a conversation, he/she is automatically impressed with you. Hence, the constant pressure to impress the other person is over and you can speak frankly.

2. Speak Less, Listen More!

“Speak less, Listen More!” is the golden rule of any type of communication. Nobody likes to talk to people whose sole interest is to express their opinions without concerning themselves with the opinions of others. Such people are considered attention and validation seeking. A good conversation is the one where opinions, ideas, and thoughts of persons involved are exchanged equally.

If you want to have a good conversation then you must inculcate the habit of listening and respecting the opinions of others. Give others a chance to speak and do not interrupt them while speaking. Let them complete themselves before you begin giving feedbacks. This will keep the other person interested and satisfied which will make your conversation a great one.

3. Take a pause before you reply.

The proverb “Think before you speak” is unavoidable to have a good conversation. You must take a short pause before replying as it enables you to review your words before you voice them out loud. It will make your words meaningful and worth listening. This short pause helps you to analyze what the other person spoke about and will help you frame your responses accordingly.

4. Drop the “I know everything” attitude.

This “I know everything” attitude is a major conversation killer. If a person is trying to prove that he/she knows everything and uses phrases like; “I am telling you”, “right!”, “Correct!” after everything you say, you tend to feel annoyed and disinterested after a point of time. People with this trait may get much attention initially, but eventually, people start hating them because they start seeming like narcissists.  Become a learner and be open to new facts and knowledge. Don’t consider yourself too learned because none of us know everything.

5. Avoid making judgments

Being judgemental is one of the major causes of not being able to have a good conversation. Past experiences and knowledge shape one's opinions. Nobody can control the opinions and beliefs of others. Hence, a judgemental outlook can make you seem like a very unpleasant person to talk to.

By not being judgemental of the other person’s views, you give them the freedom to express themselves. During this course, you may even stumble across a new interesting insight into something that was earlier hindered because of your prejudices. Hence, it will be a take off to an exceptional conversation.

6. Sometimes, Silence is the Best Approach.

This is the most important thing to keep in mind while having a conversation. People are sensitive. You must be conscious to not say anything that might hurt the feelings of the others involved in the conversation. The short pause discussed earlier is really helpful in situations like these. You must make a quick analysis of what is right to speak at the moment and what is not. Some situations may demand a diplomatic answer and others, silence. Hence, you must figure out what will be the most appropriate thing to say.

Finally, a good conversation isn't about proving a point rather it is about reaching a mutual conclusion that leaves the parties involved satisfied.

- Apoorva Garg

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