Practice your Conversational Skills (and make friends by accident)

Written by Christopher Lewis. Posted in Blog

Join a club, practice talking and win new friendsCommunication is a skill and this means that it can always be improved upon. If you want to improve your conversational skills, practice is vital. In order to become a good conversationalist, you'll need to learn how to listen better, stay focused when others are talking, interpret body language and be open and honest when responding.

These are all aspects of communication that you can hone by getting out and being more social. Exposing yourself to different social environments and actively engaging with others will help you build your wit, charm, charisma and overall appeal.

Join A Club

You should start polishing your conversational skills in an arena that you feel comfortable in. Join a club or organization that is filled with like-minded individuals. Getting actively involved, with a cause that you believe in or a recreational activity that you enjoy will expose you to people who think like you do and who communicate in a similar way.

Engaging in verbal dialogue with these individuals will help you to build both your confidence and your listening skills. Once you grow more comfortable as an active participant in conversations, you can start moving out of your comfort zone.

Start Traveling

Plan a trip that allows you to fly solo for several days. Once you're out of your element, you'll have no choice but to open up and be social with people you've just met. Check out the local haunts, take advantage of seasonal activities such as festivals and fairs and enjoy all of the recreational features that are provided by your hotel.

Strike up conversations with the people that you meet in the hotel workout room and the pool area. Sign up for any fitness classes or other group activities that are hosted and arrange to take a guided tour of the region with other travelers. The goal of this vacation is to stay outside of your room as much as possible and to meet as many new people as you can.  

Volunteer

Signing up as a volunteer is one of the best things that you can do to improve your listening skills. Active listening is one of the most important parts of good communication and it is also the one aspect of this process that is most commonly overlooked. You can volunteer to serve cooked meals to the homeless, work at a local food and clothing bank or provided assistance to the elderly.

Aging adults are often struggling with loneliness and depression and having a sympathetic ear can make a world of difference for these individuals in terms of their overall life quality. Staying focused  and listening attentively in your role as a volunteer is great practice for communication in other areas. Those who master active listening become better parents, better in their relationships and more effective in the commercial arena.

What are you waiting for?

Good communication is not something that you can learn solely by reading books. It isn't a talent that all people are naturally gifted with either. It is just like any other skill that people hope to hone and develop. While there are unlimited informational resources on how to become a better dancer, runner, cyclist or musician, people have to put the tips and strategies that they glean from these resources into action.

Communication is no different and thus, you want to make sure that you are constantly challenging yourself to put your developing conversational skills into action. With time, better listening skills and increased social confidence, you'll find that people are eager to converse with you.

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