Asking questions

Conversation is hard. Good, enjoyable conversation is even harder. It takes some skill, and some practice. Two things that don’t come easy to an introvert like me.

I came across this great post today, with lots of great references.

Why don’t people ever ask you questions about yourself?

Asking questions

I recently moved and thus I have to re-build my social network (the real one, IRL :) ). That means conversations with people I don’t know. You’d think that would be fertile ground for a ton of easy questions, but interestingly I’m still struggling.

Perhaps because I miss that vulnerability the post mentions:

[Good conversation] requires uncommon vulnerability, a willingness, in the curious question, the extended hand, the brave fall into a scene, to trust that our partner will be there to catch us, to return the curiosity, to be alive in the moment with us.

It’s hard to really open up to people I don’t know, so my questions are boring, they’re just small talk. That doesn’t lead anywhere, and certainly doesn’t make for good enjoyable conversation. I soon run out of the common place questions, and the conversation ends. What do you do then?

Should I make a list of interesting questions before I get out of the house? :)

It turns out asking questions is a skill, just like listening, and we’re not all equally good at it. Practice makes perfect I suppose, but that’s not easy when like me, you’re an introvert!

One reply on “Asking questions”

Richard Azia says:

@jeremy I haven't read what you wrote yet. One of the reasons I like social media so much is that it allows for introverts to have conversations without competing with extroverts for attention. It makes online conversations transfer to in person conversations easier. That's what everyone said about tweetups in 2007. We chatted online, and then met in person. No being shy, because we were already friends via Twitter. That's what the Fediverse should aim for.

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