ASK YOURSELF TWO SIMPLE QUESTIONS TO DRIVE CONVERSATION AND LIVE IN THE MOMENT.
Do you want to feel more confident in conversations? Do you often feel anxious, self–conscious, and scared about upsetting others or embarrassing yourself? Would you like to feel more relaxed, comfortable, connected, and happy in these types of interactions?
If you answered “Yes!” to any of these questions, then stay tuned . . . because today, we’re going to be discussing how to develop greater confidence in your conversational abilities.
Now, the best way to boost your confidence quickly is to practice your confidence on a daily basis, and subscribing to this channel is just one way of accomplishing that task . . . but in the meantime, let’s take a look at a simple and effective technique for building your social awareness and kissing your insecurity goodbye!
Lately, one of the most common problems I’ve noticed amongst my clients is that they doubt themselves during conversations: they’re constantly “in their heads” or wondering what they should say next or holding back from saying what they really think and judging their words before they leave their mouths.
These holdups make them more awkward, hesitant, and stilted in their conversations.
Not only does self-doubt just make a bad conversation worse, but it also forces you to believe that a good conversation probably went poorly.
Obviously, if fear is getting in the way of your forward progress when it comes to social situations, this is something you’re going to have to work through. One way to do that quickly and with amazing support is to attend my program, The Confidence Code, where we work together to eradicate our fears and work through our insecurities.
If you want to begin that work now, however, I have two questions for you that will help steer that progress:
- “What do I really want to know about this person?”
. . . and . . .
- “What am I inspired to share about myself?”
Too often, we spend too much time treating everyone else like they’re these fragile children who will become enraged if we say the wrong thing.
This tendency leads us to that state of constantly questioning ourselves, which means we’re never actually present in the conversation. In order to have a positive social experience in which we’re present and driving the conversation, we need to be guiding the interaction as much as the other person.
If you’re going to help guide the conversation, you need to be compelled by it—not bored with it. Hence, you need to steer it toward topics you will enjoy.
Some people think this sounds selfish—as though it allows you to only follow your own interests. In reality, however, this is the best way to showcase you as someone who is engaging and interested in what the other person has to say!
Think about it: gearing the conversation toward your interests doesn’t mean that you have to shut everyone else up and go on a rant about something completely random—it simply means that you pick up clues about the person and feel free to change the direction of the conversation if you notice they might be able to discuss a more interesting topic.
Is the person wearing a cultural article of clothing you’re curious about? Did he or she mention belonging to a club or society you’ve always wondered about? What are you genuinely curious about?
When you’re genuinely curious about people, they don’t think you’re selfish—they like it.
This theory just takes Dale Carnegie’s ideas to the next level. Sure, you can ask people questions about themselves, but you will be infinitely more engaged in that discussion if the questions you’re asking are interesting to you as well!
Now onto question two: “What am I inspired to share about myself?”
Please note that the wording here is intentional: we don’t always know why we want to share information about ourselves in a given moment—sometimes we are just inspired. That is the impulse we must respond to and let out.
A great conversation is not a one-way street.
What I often find in my Mastermind sessions and live events is that people are afraid to share or uncomfortable with the idea of opening up in that way. They’re worried they’ll be judged for their words and actions, and they’re too shy to speak up.
If you want to make an impression (and not fall asleep in the process), you need to share a piece of yourself in the process. Hence, when you feel that little urge to let some facts and silly stories about yourself out, follow it!
“What do I really want to know about this person?”
“What am I inspired to share about myself?”
If you’re holding back in either of these areas, your conversations are going to suffer. By using these two tools for creating better conversations, on the other hand, you will become more engaged; the conversation will feel more fluid; you will notice your social anxiety and frustration melting away; and you will finally begin to feel confident enough to develop the relationships that you want.
If you are looking for one way to begin this work, mantras are a great way to begin incorporating it into your mindset.
One of my clients did exceptionally well with the phrase, “I am a fascinating person.” Though he didn’t believe this statement at first, the prescription was to say it every day at least 30 times a day until, eventually, his mind began to believe it:
– I am a fascinating person. People want to know me. I am a fascinating person. People want to know me.
Begin with repeating this mantra to yourself in your private time, and then practice repeating it before intimidating conversations and truly allow yourself to expect good interactions. Eventually, you will reinforce your confidence in your potential instead of expecting (and getting) negative responses!
This is what I want for you and what I know you are possible of accomplishing. So, whenever you find yourself in a conversation with someone new, ask yourself these two questions: “What do I really want to know?” and “What am I inspired to share?” Then remind yourself that you are a fascinating person who deserves the attention of others.
Take a risk and share who you are! Not only will you benefit more from these interactions, but so will the people with whom you speak. Also, please feel free to share your experiences in this regard in the comments below. What are you most curious about when starting new conversations? What personal information do you offer up that helps connect you with others? What other mantras have you tried? Each piece of information is helpful to your fellow readers and can help us all grow and learn.
Until we speak again, may you have the courage to be who you are and to know on a deep level that you’re awesome.