You Aren’t Boring I Just Suck At Conversations I’m Sorry: a novel by me
I’m Not Ignoring You I Just Don’t Know What To Say: a sequel by me
I Feel Like I have Nothing Interesting To Say So I Don’t Say Anything At All And I’m Really Sorry Don’t Stop Talking To Me: the trilogy.
huffs in frustration
i know this feeling intimately and it really helped me to discover that sucking at conversations is not, in fact, intrinsic about you. social anxiety is hard, but getting better at small talk is a learnable skill! having interesting things to say is a learnable skill! we are not doomed to feel this way forever!
skills i am constantly working on:
1) asking more questions! asking people what they think then asking why they think it. when someone says something confusing, asking them to explain better. this is hard! but good.
2) effectively narrativizing my life! when something stressful or unlikely or hilarious happens to me, trying to find the punchline. real life doesn’t always have a satisfying ending and i hate when my stories trail off into nothing, so i try to test-run stories, noting when an ending falls flat. remembering that being funny takes practice.
3) surrounding myself with good conversationalists. extroverts are great for this! learn to enjoy conversations while they do all the work. steal their tricks! it is so relaxing to socialize with a group of people who are genuinely drawing energy from just being around each other.
4) no seriously asking people questions everyone wants to talk about themselves and their opinions more, and people have super cool stuff to say if they trust you to listen and not think they’re annoying. it’s so tricky, but so fabulous when it works.
this may not help everyone, but seeing this helpless post with three hundred thousand notes was v concerning to me.
okay grumpy oldster out, carry on.