So much has changed in how we meet new people because of the pandemic, but there’s one constant: making the first move can be terrifying. Starting a conversation with a stranger may seem daunting at first, but here are some tips to make it easier for you to make a real connection.
Meeting people organically through a shared interest is almost always better than swiping through endless app profiles. So, while out and about for your everyday activities, strike up a conversation with anyone and everyone you can. As you are in the same location, you probably already have something in common to break the ice.
Here are some conversation-starting tips to keep in mind:
Think of a general question that is genuinely on your mind. This will keep the conversation organic. For example, if you’re in the grocery store, look in their shopping cart. Oh, I’ve always wanted to try that. Have you had it before? On the other hand, if you’re out in your neighborhood, you could ask things like; Do you live here? What would you do to decide if someone should move here? If you’re at the gym, you could ask them if they’ve attended any classes and have recommendations.
It’s not so much what you say first; it is what you follow it up with. Think of a way to move the next questions to how they “feel” about the topic. For example, you could follow up your grocery store questions by asking if they like the food or if it would make a good entrée for a party. If they live nearby, you could ask them about their favorite things to do or if they like the area. At the gym, you could ask their opinions on the instruction and the variety of classes.
You probably won’t be comfortable from the start, but practicing is key, and most people genuinely want to connect and engage in meaningful ways, and they’ll be excited to have an avenue to do so.
An excellent follow-up question to cut through the tedious job and school small talk and begin a more interesting conversation is, so, what are you passionate about? This is also an excellent way to see how your values and ideals line up. This gives you a chance to get to know people in a more meaningful way than what you can glean from a dating app profile.
If you live in an area with a hard lockdown, there are tons of virtual meet-up groups and classes that you can join, including wine and painting nights, language learning classes, fitness groups, cooking classes, and even virtual clubs and raves! Creativity is rewarded, and you’ll already have a mutual interest in common.
There is a new technology that matches people of similar interests and provides an easy ice breaker to get the conversation going. Download Strike and participate in the many events on their event calendar to connect with others in real life and without swiping or texting. For more information see www.strike-lifestyle.com
With practice, striking up a conversation should be as natural as breathing in. Just remember not to be hard on yourself; no one is judging you. Good luck out there!