Progressing Further...

Postby NPhilip » Tue May 15, 2018 9:08 pm

The last couple of weeks I've been trying to talk more. A bit of a back story, I have always been 'shy' and 'quiet' my entire life and never really made an effort to make new friends. This is new to me, but the past few weeks I've been really trying. It's really weird for me at the moment, it feels like I'm bothering everyone or interrupting what they're doing. It's really exhausting too. I've been reading through forums and online articles that say to watch TV presenters and see how they act or react. That sort of helps but my issue with this is the topics that come up don't really match ones in real life if that makes sense. Also, something challenging is making the first move in a conversation. It feels awful, before I even start talking I get really nervous and start to think about things that I know will most probably not happen. I understand that at the start this will happen a lot until I get used to it but is there a way to make this more comfortable? Also, how can I keep a conversation going? Something else I've noticed is that I'm worried about how I'm coming across to the other person, if I'm annoying, boring or just awkward. This must be normal though right and being awkward is sort of normal at first? I'll also mention that I have Asperger's.

I realise how much I've missed and don't want to miss out anymore. When I start talking to someone it's kind of fun. But it's scary too (hopefully for not so long). Last few weeks have been rough and I'm trying to be honest with myself more and realised I'm lonely, hopefully this will help me. Thank you.
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#1

Postby Richard@DecisionSkills » Tue May 15, 2018 9:23 pm

Who, what, when, where, why and how.

How are you doing? What have you been up to? When did you do that? Why did you do that? Where did you do that? Who were you with?

Who, what, when, where, why and how is elementary for reporters or conducting interviews. When I went to a crime scene, these are the questions I always covered and made sure were in the report. Exceedingly simple, but very effective.

You want to keep a conversation going? Just keep cycling through who, what, when, where, why and how.
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#2

Postby NPhilip » Thu May 17, 2018 7:55 pm

So it's been a few days since I read your reply and things have been going really well. It's really easy to keep a conversation up just by using a few words, I was really surprised. I actually got invited out yesterday which was really cool, first time this has happen to me. I think the people who I've been talking to get irritated when I keep asking questions so I sort of stumbled when I noticed this. I think that next time I'll just make sure to give what they're saying a moment and add to it or something like that. It's all still new to me, but I'll give that a try. Anyways, thank you
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#3

Postby Candid » Fri May 18, 2018 7:55 am

NPhilip wrote:I think that next time I'll just make sure to give what they're saying a moment and add to it or something like that.


Good point, NPhilip. It's important to demonstrate that you're listening. For that you can try paraphrasing when appropriate, especially when someone reveals something significant. It's a well-worn counselling trick that gets people to open up more.

For example:
Other person: I'm addicted to hang-gliding. I get such a kick out of it.
You: You like a good adrenaline rush.

Taking it one step further, you make an effort to get at the feelings behind the words.
Other person: I didn't know what to do. I thought he might come back and finish the job.
You: That would have been a scary situation.

It sounds like you're doing very well at your new skill of asking questions to get people talking, and all you need to add is empathy. That's what will differentiate you from a news reporter!
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