Going to a party can be tough, especially when you don’t know many people who are going to be there. Perhaps it’s a work party with a spouse, or an extended family party where you really don’t know everyone who is going to be there. If you are somewhat shy, or uncomfortable in these situations, you may clam up, sit in the corner, and try not to make eye contact. Though this can be intimidating, this is the perfect time to get out of your comfort zone and grow a bit. Look for people to talk to. Try to find someone else who is kinda just sitting there and have a conversation.
Not sure what to talk about? Try these conversation starters out…
“How is your day going?”
This is a classic conversation starter. You may be thinking, “Duh”, but I encourage you to try it. The point of the question is to get a conversation started. When you ask an open-ended question like this, you will generally get standard feedback like, “It’s okay” or “Not too bad.” This is when you hit them with the next question…”Just okay? Nothing great happened today? When was the last time you had a great day?” Or you could say, “Not too bad? How could it be better?” Instantly more open-ended questions that require more than a yes or no answer. I know this is a generic question, but the answers give you more to dive into.
“Who has the best pizza around here?”
Everyone I know likes pizza and most love it. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t. So, asking this question can really put someone at ease and give you both something in common to talk about. You could follow up with what toppings they like or if they prefer white pizza over the typical red-sauced pizza. You could talk about whether you love cold pizza and if they do too. I believe that if you were to put pizza in a room full of strangers who were shy, conversations would naturally start. Pizza…it brings us all together!!!
“What phone do you have?”
Guess what people also love??? Their mobile phones!!! We all tend to spend so much time on them that they are an extension of ourselves. When you ask someone about their phone, they will anxiously tell you which one they have, if they like it, and if they plan to get a new one soon. You can ask follow up questions like what their favorite apps are and if they upgrade regularly or keep their phones for as long as possible. Pretty much everyone has a phone so, it’s easy to have this conversation. Not to mention…if they are shy and bored at a party, they will probably be on their phones.
There are a million ways to start a conversation. I provided you three of the most popular. Things to remember, when having these conversations, is to let the people talk. When they answer a question, provide a little experience from your personal life and then pop another question. DON’T just ask them questions non-stop without providing any information about you. This could make you seem creepy, so be sure to sprinkle some of yourself in there. And DON’T interrupt them by cutting their sentences off because you are so anxious to talk. Let them finish what they are saying before you chime in. Also remember not to complain about anything and keep the conversation positive. It can be tempting to join in on a negative topic and add fuel to the fire, but don’t. Keep the conversation moving and don’t get stuck too long on any one topic, especially a negative one.
It can be easy to start conversations at parties, though sometimes we may be too shy. I say go for it. Greet someone with a big smile and jump into a conversation. Make the best of the time you have at a party and you may just find a new friend. The party will go by much faster and your shy nature will eventually wither away. Get out of your comfort zone and brighten up someone’s day!!!