When you’re meeting someone for the first time, you know very little about them, and you aren’t very familiar with their hobbies, interests, quirks or pet peeves. Maybe you met them through a friend, at a coffee shop or at a bar, but either way, you want to make a good impression so that you can make this encounter blossom into a wonderful friendship.
So, where do you begin? First, let me just tell you that’s it’s OK to be afraid and everyone gets a bit shy at first. All you need to do is polish up your conversation skills, fill your head with questions and ice-breakers and learn more about what to say now and what to say next. In order to help you, I’ve gathered a list of conversation starters for almost any occasion and the pointers are split into different categories, to help you arrange your thoughts. You should try and ask a broad range of questions, and most importantly – be sure to actually listen to their answers, it will be crucial for your follow-up questions.
General Life Questions
1. How was your day?
2. What did you do today?
3. Did you have a nice weekend?
4. Do you have anything planned for the weekend?
5. Is your week going well?
6. Have anything exciting planned?
Work Related Questions
1. Where do you work?
2. What do you do there?
3. Have you been working there along time?
4. Do you like it?
5. What’s your favorite/worst part of your job?
Personal Characteristic Questions
1. When’s your birthday?
2. Do you believe in star signs and astrology?
3. What’s your favorite color?
4. What’s your favorite food?
5. Do you cook? What’s your favorite dish to cook?
6. Do you like animals? Which ones?
7. What type of movies do you like?
8. Do you have a favorite movie?
9. What type of music do you like?
10. What’s your favorite artist or band?
11. Do you like reading? What type of books?
12. What are your hobbies?
13. Do you play any sports?
14. Can you name something quirky about yourself?
15. How many languages do you speak?
16. Are you a nature person? Do you like ‘outdoorsy’ stuff?
17. What’s your favorite place that you have visited?
Past History Questions
1. Where are you from?
2. Where did you grow up?
3. Did you enjoy growing up there?
4. What was your favorite part of high-school?
5. Did you go to college? What was your major?
6. Where are you parents from?
7. Do you have any brothers or sisters?
8. Do you have you any nephews or nieces?
1. What’s it like where you live?
2. Are there a lot of bars or clubs there?
3. Which are your favorite places to go out to?
4. Which is your favorite restaurant?
5. Do you have a special place to go to?
Life Goals Questions
1. If you could travel anywhere, where would it be?
2. List the top 5 places you’d like to travel to.
3. What are you passionate about?
4. List the top 5 things you’d like to accomplish before you die.
5. Who is the most important person in the world to you?
6. What’s your dream job and why?
7. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Do you have a plan?
8. If you were marooned on a desert island, what 3 things would you take?
9. Describe yourself using 5 words.
10. What’s the craziest thing you’ve done?
11. What’s the funniest thing you’ve done?
12. What are 3 things you’ve never done, but you would like to try?
That’s a lot of questions. Be sure to memorize a few and mix and match them during any conversation you do from now own. Once people answer you, it’s really easy to continue the talk if you just listen to their little cues about what they’re passionate about talking and what they’re not. Starting to talk to new people is not easy, but it’s always fun. Don’t be shy – give it a go today!
Do you have any other good conversation starters you’d like to share? Write them in the comments below.