Small talk tips for introverts – Key Tip: Leave small talk to extroverts. They enjoy an unfair superiority in the competitive social arena. They are streets ahead in establishing relationships through their ability to drop a few nice words to a sales clerk, share jokes with the dentist's receptionist, or manage the light banter which subtly reveals the interests of a customer at a party.
The introverts, who lack such inherited bonhomie, will only look awkward if they try to imitate the extroverts. Instead of imitation, they should choose to be acknowledged as amiable introverts. They should benefit from the advantages of a reticent nature, while learning to profit from customer perceptions of the strengths behind their own reticence.
Small talk tips for
introverts – Key Tip: Leave small talk to extroverts. They enjoy
an unfair superiority in the competitive social arena. They are
streets ahead in establishing relationships through their ability to
drop a few nice words to a sales clerk, share jokes with the
dentist's receptionist, or manage the light banter which subtly
reveals the interests of a customer at a party.
introverts, who lack such inherited bonhomie, will only look awkward
if they try to imitate the extroverts. Instead of imitation, they
should choose to be acknowledged as amiable introverts. They should
benefit from the advantages of a reticent nature, while learning to
profit from customer perceptions of the strengths behind their own reticence.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – The Talent
It is futile to imitate inherited talents. For extroverts, small talk is an effortless and fun pastime. Their intellects thrive on it. They are interested in people. They remember volumes of trivia. They recall vast libraries of minutiae, including local gossip, family relationships, health issues and sports interests of the people they meet. Their interests in these subjects make them enjoy company – the more, the merrier.
Extroverts toss out appropriate comments in the company of strangers in the hope of turning one of them into a common point of interest. They respond fast, adding a quick succession of repartees to what has been said. Their social lubrication keeps the conversational ball rolling, rewarding them with a feeling of satisfaction. This potential grants extroverts added focus and energy.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Reward Oriented Behavior
Extroverts have a built in advantage. In social gatherings, a reward oriented neural subsystem continually varies the human energy, which controls inspiration and enthusiasm. Professor Wolfram Schultz discovered that reward oriented behavior is promoted by the release of a group of neurotransmitters by neurons in the early reptilian (approach or withdraw) part of the human brain.
When these neurons detect signals of the possibility of a reward within a specific time frame, they release dopamine in the forebrain. Increased dopamine intensifies forebrain activity, bringing clarity to objectives, making the mind feel more energetic and elated. But, it is not the reward of social goodwill, but the expectation of it, which releases dopamine.
Schultz noted that the release increases, if the reward is greater than what is expected. It continues only for the predicted time period, when a reward can be expected. The release reduces at the end of this period. The releases stop if the rewards have become a matter of routine. Even crossing a street is a sufficiently rewarding objective, to increases the focus and attention of the mind. The extrovert anticipates the certain rewards of goodwill at a social gathering. They thrive in company.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Subconscious Processes
The extrovert joins a party with a massive database of trivia, including social history, anecdotes and snappy answers. From this vast database, within milliseconds after someone finishes speaking, the extrovert's mind selects an appropriate idea, formulates a witty response, paraphrases it into a sentence, selects the right words from a vocabulary of thousands of words and places them in grammatical order.
Then the extrovert's systems initiates motor impulses to control the timing and tenor of the delivered speech. All these things happen before you can say “wow!” On the other hand, the introvert approaches social gatherings with a sense of discomfort and a database bare of social trivia. The emotional triggers of speech remain inhibited with negativity. He has no conscious control over his verbal communications.
Those systems require lightning speed to deliver a reasonable reply to a casual question. He just cannot “will himself” to be outgoing and talkative. If the introvert is tongue tied, it is because, without his permission, those mechanisms have decided to remain silent. Even a conscious effort to speak will not overcome the lack access to an appropriate idea in his memory.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Subconscious Processes
While the introvert may be focused and energetic in the pursuit of his career, his responses slow down in company. Being unable to share common jokes and comments, he feels tongue tied and awkward. His life experiences have not assembled the profusion of casual observations, which enable the extrovert to revel in small talk. His brain does not provide focus and energy for quick exchanges. He hesitates as he struggles to think out suitable answers to trivial questions.
Instead of waiting for responses, most people will just go ahead and ask or say something else. The introvert, who was probably just about to answer the earlier question, is forced to abandon his present line of thought and follow the new thread of the ongoing conversation. While introverts feel apologetic about their slow witted responses, their listeners feel disconcerted by the peculiar silences, which precede their solemn answers. In the end, introverts distance themselves and consider the breakneck trail of questions and answers to be shallow and pointless.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – The Wet Blanket Effect
The introverts have a natural distaste for small talk. This has an unpleasant side effect. People come to think that they are socially inept or snobby. They imagine them turning up their noses on social chatter, which is widely believed to be at the core of “normal” culture. People assume that they don’t like chit-chat because they don’t like them. Habitual failure to communicate with cheer causes the introvert to fear that his tension will "spoil" the party.
Tension adds more problems. People usually become uncomfortable when they sense tension. They have mirror neurons, which “mirror” the behavior of others in company. Those neurons support the generation of identical emotions within a group – herd behavior. Tension in one animal is conveyed quickly throughout the herd. It is a survival mechanism. So, effectively, the tensions of a self critical introvert will also transmit to the group, and lower spirits all round.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Be Comfortable With Reticence
But, attendance at social gatherings may be necessary. Instead of desperately searching for things to say, the introvert should aim to just be comfortable at parties. The tension, which causes an introvert to become a “wet blanket” can be easily stilled. The mind control tips in this website suggest ways to still tension through simple mechanical exercises. She can learn to instantly relax her muscles and to still her mortifying visceral responses.
She can learn to quiet the habitual instincts, which cause her tension in company. The nagging self talk, which builds inner turmoil, can be stilled. A calm mind will recognize the thoughtless opinions of others as being irrelevant. The introvert should become a comfortable listener, leaving the extroverts to enjoy a “great party.” The same comfort will eliminate the wet blanket effect and contribute positively to the spirit of the party.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Pleasant Expectations
The introvert has chosen to attend the party, because social, or career needs require his presence. While longing, like Professor Higgins, for the “peace and quiet of an undiscovered tomb,” the introvert has become comfortable in company. His very reticence can work to his benefit, if he views social gatherings as a necessary evil.
Acceptance of this necessity can still his inner dissatisfaction. Instead of dreading the party, the introvert now accepts it as a social need, or as a necessary step to achieve his goals. Acceptance of the inevitable further stills negative emotions. The introvert need not make an effort to produce small talk. Lacking the vast store of social trivia, the objective of the introvert should be to become a silent, but amiable listener to the exchanges.
Having learned the art of relaxation, his body is completely relaxed. Acceptance and relaxation bring stillness. He can gain added focus and energy, if he expects to benefit through increased goodwill, or useful insights from the social gathering. That may, or may not happen.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – A Genial Listener
In the company of extroverts, a solemn presence can dampen spirits. The extrovert can avoid this pitfall by becoming a genial listener. All that is needed is to smile expectantly at a stranger, leaving him to take the initiative in talking. Social gatherings thrive on shared positive emotions and trivial interactions.
The appearance of comfortable enjoyment removes the anxieties of the host. The objective is to share bonhomie and not to transmit profound knowledge. With warmth, your pleasant smiles or murmurs to flippant comments can encourage others to talk. If the stranger is an extrovert, he will keep the ball rolling, with minimum contributions from you. You will have gained goodwill.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Insults & Put Downs
Unfortunately, parties also sustain a large supply of insults and put downs. There are people who actively seek the discomfiture of others. Remember that those who enjoy insulting bare acquaintances have serious problems of their own. Never regret your inability to come up with sharp rejoinders.
Accept the inevitable judgment of extroverts that you are a “bore.” Continue the mood of friendly expectations. You will leave behind a perplexed individual, who may even carry away goodwill for you. If you land in the company of other introverts, you can share share deeper ideas, or enjoy sharing their silences. Your objective is is to be relaxed and comfortable, while expecting to be informed or entertained.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Bypass Socializing
The introvert can avoid social burnout by choosing careers, where socializing is not paramount. When individual performance, rather than social skills, determines career growth, the introvert has no need to present a dishonest, or embellished front. You can't become someone you are not. Constantly forcing yourself to mingle, chit-chat and cold-call will trigger stress, which can take years off your life.
When your career success is more dependent on the quality of your work than on social skills, you will have fewer worries. When your presence at social gatherings is not important for your career, you can choose to decline invitations to join convivial evenings, dinners, or parties and reduce the strain of enduring trivial social exchanges. If you do decide to attend, you could land up a little later and leave earlier. Such responses become easier when you have acknowledge your nature and feel at peace with yourself.
Small Talk Tips For Introverts – Introvert's Advantages
While the extrovert may be good at getting a toe into the door, most businesses require long and enduring relationships. The subtle manipulation, which induces customers to buy, comes easily to extroverts. But, the forceful approach, which pounds away and oversells a product often repels customers, who wish to make informed decisions.
Introverts better understand and respect the need for space and thinking time. They are better at grasping body language clues which show when a person shutting down or glazing over. An introvert needs to accept that he is short of small talk, quiet, slow to sell himself and unwilling to party. Then, he is less likely to feel a need to sound right all of the time. He is unlikely to live off fly-by-night propositions.
The introvert will not manipulate words or thoughts into the other person's mouth. He will focus on delivering services rather than on making contacts. He listens to customer concerns, answers their queries, services their problems and helps them to make wise choices. This builds enduring relationships. At parties, customers make value judgments of whether they wish to enter into long term relationships. A quiet strength may often be preferred to easy going affability. A lack of small talk can also be a career advantage.
For my peace of mind, I earmarked 20 minutes for meditation on the terrace. With my eyes closed, I sense my hands on the chair and feel the numbness in my feet.
I feel my breath flowing through my nose, my throat, my chest and my stomach. I can hear the chirping of birds, the phut phut of auto rickshaws, the occasional roar of a truck and the insistent hooting of horns.
When I open my eyes, I see a pale moon over two hundred thousand miles away. I see the nuclear fires, blazing for millions of years in the pale globe of the setting sun. A star millions of miles away in space.
I can see green shoots coming up on a tree, watch the dives and swoops of birds, the great circles of the hawks and flocks of birds flying home for the night.
Diffused light from the sun reflects off a parrot on the tree and enters my eye through a pinhole opening. I sense the bustling mood of the bird, even though it is smaller than a drop of water in my eyes.
All these things are seen and felt by me in a few brief minutes. In the distance, is the head of a man seeming to be no bigger than a pea. Yet, that head too sees and feels such things. Ten million people in this great city see and feel in ten million ways.
My mind wanders to a misty view of postwar London; an exciting glimpse of Disneyland. An awed view of Tiananmen Square. The looming Himalayan ranges. My mind takes me to distant galaxies.
It carries me into the heart of millions of invisible neurons, where electrical charges flash thousands of times a second powering my contemplation. I see the campaigns of Julius Caesar and Alexander. I feel the longings of Jehangir.
Already my mind has taken me to palaces, battlefields and even the stars. And yet, the 20 minutes hang heavily on me. If I lost everything, but can just see and feel, in just a few brief minutes, my mind can travel the world, or imagine the cosmos.
Life has already blessed me
with over twenty million waking minutes. I have an infinity of time
on my hands. Have I a right to expect more from life?
I really loved the self improvement plan post. Its great food for thought and the steps are actually actionable as compared to many other self help sites out there.
Joe Glen USA.
As a clinical therapist, I have found your site very useful!
I love it. ...
Andrew Montgomery USA.