Monthly Archives: July 2010

Why People Don’t Listen

This is a typical problem that many people face; others ignore them when they’re speaking. So, why don’t people listen to you when you’re talking? There are a number of reasons; let’s examine some.

1. A physical problem

This is a fairly simple and basic problem; the person might be hard of hearing. If this is the case, get them to a doctor for a hearing test, and then maybe a hearing aid is all they need.

2. You’re the problem

The flip side to the first point is that maybe you are just not speaking up enough. If you find that many people aren’t listening to you when you speak, it could be due to you.

Ask someone that you respect if you have a volume problem, and then work to correct it. You can try something as simple as practicing public speaking to taking a speech class.

Another excellent option is taking an acting class and even appearing in some plays. All of these steps will contribute to you learning to enunciate properly and project your voice.

3. They’re too self-absorbed

In some cases, people are so wrapped up in their own lives and concerns that they just don’t want to listen to you – or anyone else. With these people, it can be very difficult to get them to listen to you. About the only way is to put the subject in terms of how it will affect them.

4. They don’t like you or care about what you have to say

Sometimes, why people don’t listen has less to do with what you are saying, and more to do with who you are. It could be an older sibling who doesn’t respect you, a co-worker who is jealous of your work record or abilities, or even a classmate who doesn’t like that you got a higher grade on a recent test.

Depending on the degree of animosity the person feels toward you, you might be able to talk to them and resolve the issue. In some cases, the enmity may run deep, and getting the person to listen to you may be quite difficult, but that is no reason not to try.

5. They don’t like or agree with what you have to say

This is a very common problem, these days; especially in the area of politics. Just tune your TV to any news or opinion program and you will hear people talking about Death Panels and government takeovers, Global Warming and various 9/11 conspiracy theories. Yet, if you try to convince them that they’re wrong – they will not listen.

In some cases, people just don’t want to listen to any view that disagrees with theirs. On the other hand, some people can be swayed if you present them with enough facts; it really depends on the person, and the issue you’re debating.

6. They have a vested interest in not listening

This goes hand in hand with point five. The people on the TV shows that claim Death Panels exist, the US government was behind 9/11, and other horrors have a reason for not listening to anyone who disagrees with them. For them, it’s how they earn their living.

This is a problem that has existed for decades, if not centuries; there are people who will not listen to any view that contradicts theirs, because it would hurt their ability to make money. With these people, accept that you are not going to get them to listen.

When trying to deal with the issue of why people don’t listen to what you or someone else have to say, there are numerous reasons. Examine the ones listed here, and see if the answer can help you to overcome the problem.

What to Say When You Don’t Know What to Say

It is one of the most common problems in talking to someone: what to say when you don’t know what to say. It could be a person you have just met, someone at a business conference or social function or a man or woman on a first date.

You don`t need to remain tongue-tied. There are a number of things you can talk about when you don`t know what to say:

1. Mention a recent movie

These days, there are almost always new movies coming out. Mention a recent one that you’ve seen, and ask the people around you their opinion of it.

If you want to really jump start the conversation, bring up a controversial film (like “Avatar”) and you will get people talking in no time.

2. Ask where the person is from

One thing that people love to talk about is themselves. Ask where someone in the group is from, and then ask follow-up questions about the place.

What were summers/winters there like? Why did they leave? What did they like best about the place?

3. Mention a favorite hobby or pastime

You can also always bring up some hobby or pastime that you enjoy. If people express an interest in it, you can tell them all about it; how you got started, how it’s done, where you go to do it, and so on.

A real help in what to say when you don’t know what to say

is to pick out a hobby or pastime that is very different

from the usual.

For example, if you like cave exploring (also known as spelunking), mention that before saying you like to play soccer.

4. Ask about the person’s family

About the only thing people like to talk about more than themselves is their family. Just one word of warning here: make sure the person you ask about their family actually has one. If not, that can really kill the conversation.

If the person has shown off pictures or mentioned their family previously, then ask what their spouse likes to do. You can ask how their kids are doing in school, and if they have sports or hobbies they like to do. This can also lead to you bringing up your family.

5. Talk about literature

Given the huge amount of reading material around today, you can talk about new novels that are in the bookstores, e-books available online and even graphic comics.

Look around at the people you’re with, and try to gauge

what sort of book would be best to mention. A teen or young adult crowd would be interested in graphic novels, kids might like Harry Potter and adults might enjoy a talk on the latest thriller or romance novel.

6. Bring up politics

These days there is one subject on which everyone has an opinion, and that is politics.

You may need to take care with this subject; if there are people around you that have very extreme views on politics (“Obama’s a communist!” or some such thing), bringing this subject up runs the risk of causing an all out war.

7. Talk about the weather

When all else fails, you can bring up the weather. It may be a rather weak subject, but it is at least something everyone can talk about and usually has an opinion on.

As you can see, when you’re stuck for a subject to talk about, there are ways to deal with the situation of what to say when you don’t know what to say. Make use of a few of these methods, and you’ll always have something to talk about.

What To Say When There`s Nothing To Talk About

We have all been in that situation where a conversation falls flat on its face and everyone stands around wondering what to say next. We have all found ourselves in that moment when there`s nothing to talk about when we are trying to socialize.

1. Do not be embarrassed by the conversation slump

It is actually a funny situation if you think about it, because the nose dive in conversation happens to us all and is the pun of many comedians.

It is also sometimes an embarrassing situation because we are left trying to figure out what the next move is. Perhaps it is ours. Maybe it is theirs.

There are actually no rules. Anyone will be glad if you step in to rescue a conversation.

2. Bring up something familiar

People like to talk about things that they are familiar with and can relate to. For example, many people are familiar and interested with current affairs. Current affairs can bring life to a lull in the conversation.

3. Use your surroundings

There will be many things around and about you that make great conversational subjects when there is nothing else to talk about. Sometimes the seemingly most insignificant thing can spark a conversation.

Take a look around your environment and see what others might not. Your unique observation can become a source of an interesting subject when there is nothing else to talk about.

4. Listen and be ready to participate

You should be ready to step into the conversation at the right time. To be an active participant in any interaction means you have to listen and pay attention.

From this you can catch ideas and process them and at the right time contribute to the conversation when there may be a lull. Also, not listening to the person who is talking is a big contributor to conversations falling flat.

However, it takes both the speaker and listener to make nothing to talk about into some thing fun and worthwhile to talk about.

5. Interact!

Having a good interactive line takes exactly what was mentioned in the previous paragraph: listening!

What is meant by having a good interactive line is to ask questions at the right time, throw in the agreements where appropriate and just basically being involved in the conversation so you keep it moving along.

6. Ask questions

This is a very good way to develop an interactive line of conversation with anyone. Asking pertinent questions at the right time can keep a conversation going onto a variety of different directions, which naturally turns nothing to talk about into ideas that are great conversation topics.

But again this takes the skill of listening and paying attention to what is going on around you.

We have covered six approaches you should take when there`s nothing to talk about. Now let us end with a couple of things you really should not do if you want to rescue the conversation.

1. Do not show impatience

Many people have a tendency to show nervousness and sometimes even agitation when they find themselves among others where there is no conversation.

Your impatience can make others nervous and when people are nervous this creates a tense environment and makes it even more difficult to find things to talk about.

Instead, assert your interest by bringing up something that is fun that everyone can relate to.

2. Do not get nervous

Never be too embarrassed to bring up something to talk about when everyone else might think there is nothing to talk about. You would be surprised at the subjects people are interested in talking about. So be assertive and put something interesting out there.

Everyone has experienced situations where there is nothing to talk about. These types of interactions can create uneasiness, but there are things you can say when there is nothing to talk about.