Monthly Archives: December 2007

10 Great Questions For Conversation Fun

Even with the right questions conversation may not flow quite as freely as you may hope. That’s because you need to really listen actively to the answers that you get. A conversation is like a tennis match, with words flowing back and forth like the tennis ball.

Carefully listening to the answers you are given will give you another idea to pick up on which should lead you to another question and from there, you can progress the conversation, whatever your purposes is. If you listen carefully to the answers to your questions, conversation gets a lot easier and a lot more productive.

However, it is true that if you have some good, interesting questions conversations flow more easily than if you asked closed questions requiring a yes/no answer or boring questions that yield uninspiring answers or perhaps worst of all, if you asked embarrassing questions which make your listener clam up in silence, not wanting to answer you.

You can avoid all of those pitfalls with the following questions:

1. If you could live at any time in history, when would it be?

This will help you to se what qualities the person admires and what they would like to do with their lives, such as politics, theatre, movies etc.

2. If you were asked to do so, would you sing in public?

Again, you will find out something of the person’s interests; you will also probably find out if they can sing or if they want to be able to, so perhaps you will uncover a shared passion for music. Also, you may well find out how shy or extrovert someone is, which will give you an idea of how to handle the rest of the conversation.

3. What are you passionate about? What really moves you?

This question has the advantage of having an element of surprise as people aren’t usually expecting this sort of question, but it tends not to embarrass them or put them on the spot because they can answer lightly with something like ‘watching my baseball team win a game’ or a similar answer.

4. If you won the lottery, how would you spend the money?

With this question you will find out what motivates the person, what they like to spend their money on and also something of their attitudes towards their significant other; of course, you might also find out if they have partners and children you don’t know about!

5. What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

People might lie about this, but they will feel free to have some fun about it; it doesn’t even matter if they lie, since whatever answer they give is sure to lead on to further conversation, whether what they reply is really crazy or not.

6. If you were throwing a party for five people, who would you invite?

These might be a mixture of famous people and people important to them in their life.  Whoever they say will lead on to further conversation about why these guests were chosen and how your choices match up.

7. If time and money was no object, to what causes would you dedicate your efforts?

This can tell you a lot about a person’s passions.

8. What if your favorite comfort food meal?

This can lead to some great nostalgia and a trip down memory lane to uncover the associations as well as to swap recipes.

9. If you could pick one talent that you don’t already have, what would it be?

You’ll find out about a person’s passions this way. And if you happen to possess the skill they wish to possess, why not offer to teach them?

10. If you could spend a whole day doing exactly as you wished with no demands and no responsibilities, what would you do?

People dream of those kinds of days and they will usually love to share these ideas. You’ll really find what people enjoy doing with a question like this.

If you are communicating with a person online, you could also ask them to explain the reasons behind their screen name.

You will probably only need to use one or two of these questions in any situation.  Remember that initiating conversation is the aim of these questions; conversation entails you properly listening to the answers that you are given and picking up on those answers to progress what you talk about.

5 Super Topics of Conversation

Conversations can be a little difficult and stilted when you first meet someone or start to talk to them online. What you need are topics of conversation that are fun to talk about so that you can both relax and enjoy getting to know each other better. That’s why different forms of entertainment are such good topics of conversation. They also might provide you with ideas for a future date! At least you will find out what you both like to watch, listen to and do for entertainment.

Here are a few topics of conversation to help you to get to know the other person better and have some fun as well; who knows where the conversation my lead!

1. Music

A good topic of conversation is about what music styles the person you are talking to likes. You can also ask if they have a favorite musician or group or a favorite CD. You may find that you share musical tastes in common, which would be nice and a conversation started in this way can easily progress to talking about different clubs you have visited or concerts that you have been to. Perhaps it may lead to you asking the other person on a date to an upcoming gig.

2. Movies

Movies are a great topic of conversation as almost everyone has at least a few movies which they liked a lot and remember well. They will associate these movies with happy times and so the mood of  your conversation is more likely to be light and happy. Talk about your all-time favorite movies or actors and actresses or the movies that you have seen recently. Discussing what movies you like will also show something of your personality and that of the person you are talking to, so you can see more closely how compatible you are. Again, this could lead to a date or at least a fun and friendly time out at your local cinema.

3. Books

These days, fewer people seem to read, but if you would rather curl up with a good book than stare at the silver screen, try asking what types of books the other person likes to read or whether they have read a book that seems to be all the rage at the moment.

4. Television

For the vast majority of people, watching television is the pastime that they spend most time on. In fact, many adults spend more hours watching TV than they do doing anything else, including sleeping. Asking about TV programmes that a person watch is pretty much guaranteed to lead to a conversation. Whether it’s ‘CSI’, ‘Desperate Housewives’, ‘Lost’ or some other TV series, the chances are that you will find that you have some viewing pleasure in common.

5. Sport

You don’t have to be some great athlete to enjoy talking about sport. Many people are avid armchair fans of some sport or other. Talking about your favorite sport and the players allows you to see if you share team loyalties or maybe you both just like shouting at the referee; either way it can be fun to chat about.

So, armed with these five topics of conversation, you should be able to feel confident talking to anyone on or offline informally. You will have something to open a conversation with on which the other person will feel comfortable about replying; from there, there are many follow-up questions which you can ask about any or all of these topics of conversation to keep the chat flowing.

4 Conversation Topics People Love To Talk About

Possibly the most common question people have when they seek help for their communication skills is what makes good conversation topics. So many times people worry about what to talk about, even when they are in the middle of a conversation on the abyss of an embarrassing silence.

The important thing is not to panic or worse, run away; pauses are a good thing in conversation. They give people time to think.

But if you feel that there are too many embarrassing silences in your conversation and that they go on too long, then perhaps you need a little guidance on conversation topics that will keep the conversation flowing or getting it going again when things have stalled.  The trick is to have something that people will find it easy to talk about, something on which they are bound to have opinions they are comfortable in sharing.

1. The Person you are Talking to

People usually love to talk about themselves; it is also a topic on which they are knowledgeable, so they should find it easy to talk about themselves so long as you do not embarrass the other person with deeply probing questions.

Try to ask about what really interests the person and find out what they like to do. Don’t ask them about work in a social situation. Many people want to forget about work and they may not find it an inspiring conversation topic.

Instead, find out about the things about which they are really enthusiastic and which they choose to do in their free time. Ask open-ended questions so it is not possible to bring the conversation to a sudden halt once more with a simple yes or no answer. Don’t be deterred if you get umms and ahhs and vague answers. Really focus on what the other person in the conversation is saying and you will very often find something to pick up from out of even very short answers.

If you focus the conversation topic on what interests the other person, you will usually find that they reply enthusiastically. Don’t worry that you will be stuck with listening all night. You will usually find that if you have the courtesy to listen properly to people and engage with what they are telling you, rather than seizing the first opportunity to turn the topic of conversation onto yourself, that the person you are talking to will be happy to return the compliment and listen to you in turn.

2. Take Some Cues from your Surroundings

Don’t get stuck on one conversation topic. Look around you for inspiration. If you are at a party or visiting friends, the CD collection or painting or ornament may raise a good conversation topic. You might remark upon something that someone is wearing. All of these things can be really good conversation topics, but remember to keep your comments positive and complimentary. It’s not a good idea to be critical about what you see; as well as potentially causing offence, you may well cause the person to whom you are speaking to feel uncomfortable and they may then want to move swiftly on to speak to someone else.

3. Current Affairs

If you keep up with what is happening in the world you should never be at a loss for conversation topics. If you regularly read the newspaper you will always have something interesting to talk about but unless you know the person you are talking to very well and you know the story will be appreciated, you would be best advised to steer clear of stories of death or other misery.

4.TV and Cinema

Almost everyone watches TV. The latest episode of ‘Prison Break’ or a recent movie may be all you need to get the conversation flowing again. You can discuss which of the most recent Hollywood blockbusters are actually worth all their hype or which were a bit of a disappointment. Taking a look at social book-marking websites like Digg will help you to see what the current trends are and what is popular to talk about at the moment.

Just these few conversation topics should be enough to get the talk flowing and keep it going for quite a while.