So, you’re talking to someone, it’s going ok, and then… your mind goes blank. You can’t think of what to say! And then the embarrassing awkward silence comes in. You stand there, staring at the person, for what feels like forever, and then they’re like, “Oh, well I gotta get going um bye…” and awkwardly walks off.
Now you’ve probably experienced this, especially if you’re reading this. If you’ve been in this situation before, you know just how awkward it feels. I used to be in this situation A LOT, and just hated how whenever I’d talk to someone, that would happen.
I was already self-conscious enough, and didn’t need awkward conversations on top of it. Going to a new school and having been bullied before, I didn’t want that to happen again. So I was very nervous about talking to people.
Eventually, I was tired of it, and I wanted to actually make some friends for once. So I searched the web, day and night, night and day, not even getting sleep sometimes (ok, maybe that’s an exaggeration), but I surfed the web, and was able to find things that finally helped.
As a result of that, I’m going to show you my tips that helped me significantly with this problem, and conversation in general. So I hope these will help you too, and let’s start!
1. Have worth in yourself
Now I know my mom has already talked about self-worth, and I know it sounds generic, like everyone says that, but it’s true. You need to BELIEVE that you matter, because if you feel like no one cares about you, it’s going to be hard to go talk to someone.
So first, remember that you are worth something, and that somebody wants you.
Also, this will attract people too. Think about it. Imagine seeing someone walking with their head down. What do you think about that person? Would you want to talk to that person? Compare that to someone walking with their head up. What do you think about that person? Would you want to talk to them?
You see how having your head down can keep people from talking to you? They may be like “Oh, something may have happened. I don’t want to bother them…”
So keep your head up, along with your confidence!!
2. Stop trying to filter out your words
You may have heard this over and over but, it’s true. You need to get rid of your filter. If you don’t know what I mean, let me explain.
Let’s say you’re at a business meeting. When you’re there, you want to be professional, so one thing is using a filter. So at a business meeting, you would put on your “formal” filter, your “no swearing” filter, or stuff like that. Or if you’re on a date with someone, you may put on your “be funny” filter, and “don’t act stupid” filter.
Your filter is there not to embarrass yourself. You don’t want to be at a business meeting and start saying stuff like “Hey bro how ya doin’?” or be on a date at a restaurant and say “Did you know that Bear Grylls once had it where (gross warning) he drank his own pee (I’m not kidding he actually did that.)?” You know not to say this, and that’s because of your filter.
Your filter is usually good, but sometimes it can be bad.
If your mind is going blank, that’s because you have too many filters. That could be because you’re so focused on not embarrassing yourself.
So you put on the “don’t be stupid” filter, and the “be funny” filter, and the “act cool” filter, and before you know it, you have so many filters that almost everything you wanted to say is “unacceptable” and that’s where the main problem is.
You think that everything you want to say isn’t good, so you don’t say it.
In reality, you actually have A LOT of things you want to say, but you don’t. So you NEED to stop filtering out everything. You have a right to say your thoughts, and as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone, you should say it.
Now I know that this isn’t going to be an overnight thing, it really isn’t.
It took me a while to actually go and start saying things that came to my mind, instead of being like, “No, that wouldn’t be funny enough” or “No, what if that isn’t interesting enough”, and then just not even saying anything. Don’t be worrying about if it wouldn’t be “funny enough” or whatever. Just say it.
3. (Bonus) Don’t be embarrassed by the awkward silences
Now as you see from the word “Bonus”, this is an extra section. You don’t need to read it, but it can also help too.
So, remember the beginning of the post where I said an “awkward silence” happened, and how awkward it was? Well, you need to stop being embarrassed by it.
The reason why people are embarrassed is that when you’re talking to a new person, you feel like you’re wasting your time, because as people say, “time is money.” If you think about it, when you’re talking to your family or close friends and stop talking, you don’t always feel that awkward silence.
So it needs to be the same with people you just met. It could just be that the conversation ended. Also, even with people who are good at conversations, awkward silences can happen. So you may still have awkward silences, but you don’t have to feel all awkward about it.
Now I will admit, when I first heard this, and kinda tried it, I thought, “yeah, but the person I’m talking about doesn’t feel the same way” and that’s a good point. But I feel like it helped me, because I don’t always have to worry about “always needing to talk” and all that, so this step could help too.
So, how do you deal with your mind going blank while talking to people?
Well, the main thing is getting rid of that filter, but also just having confidence in yourself, and you can also have it where you don’t get awkward during awkward silences.
Now I do hope that this post will help you, as it did help me, but everyone’s experiences are different.
I’m in school right now, so I was in an environment where I’m able to make friends easier, since I have people around me, in the same place. But this can also help if you’re out of school, at work and stuff like that.
Also, this post was inspired by this video. I wanted to give him credit because his video did also help me a lot with communicating easier, so I’d recommend watching his video!