The Conversationalist


Conversation and the conversationalist: probably one of the most under-discussed topics in the social arts. What a pity. Conversation is part of the backbone upon which everything related to socializing is built upon, but in the 21st century that’s almost forgotten. You might go so far as to say that the art of the conversationalist is a vanishing art.

conversationalist

In this day and age of sound bites, quick blurbs of news, and friends and acquaintances using social media to spit out short, tepid, meaningless quips about their days and feelings and whatever else springs to mind and gets unloaded out on the uncaring and overburdened ears of the Internet, being a good conversationalist is a rare thing. Being someone who is able to deftly move from topic to topic, keeping a conversation flowing effortlessly and breezily forward, diving into the depths of another individual’s personal life and concerns, then coming back up for air with a bit of laughter and lightheartedness before things get too heavy, then diving back down again to find out more about this person you’ve met just an hour ago than his or her closest family members know… this is what the lost art of being skilled in conversation is all about.

The conversationalist moves past small talk with ease. The conversationalist elicits emotions and feelings about topics his conversation partner didn’t know she had. The conversationalist dives deep and gets to intimate, personal topics that allow him to really relate to others and bond to others, and allow others to really relate to and feel bonded to him. The conversationalist does not just talk; he drives a conversation from the initial feeling-out stage to a deep, personal connection that is rewarding to everyone involved.

It isn’t easy to become talented at conversation. Actually, it’s rather challenging, sometimes emotionally draining, and always a constant work-in-process, even for those who’ve been focused on improving their conversational aptitudes for years. But it’s very worth it; learning to excel in conversation is one of the most excellent, useful, empowering skills you can possibly learn.

Being good at conversation opens doors for you that few other things can.

Before we discuss how you can start on the path to becoming a truly world class conversationalist, though, let’s start by covering everyone’s favorite part first: the benefits to you.


Benefits of Being a Good Conversationalist

So let’s say you put in the work, and actively hone your conversational abilities, and start really paying attention to what you’re saying to people and what they’re saying back to you and start trying to actively drive conversation to more effectively get more and better information from others. How’s that do you any good?

Well, the thing about conversation is, unless you decide the hermitic life is the life for you, you’re going to be using conversation everywhere, constantly, with just about everything you do in life.

You use conversation everywhere.

Because it’s so ubiquitous, you’d think it would be a no-brainer that of course their abilities as a conversationalist would be one of the first things people focused on. But life is funny, and beyond a certain level of ubiquity, people stop working on things.

To put it in perspective, I’ll ask you this: when’s the last time you worked on the way you walk? How about your voice tone – have you worked on that lately? If you drive a car, have you sought to get better at driving any time recently? If you ride a bike, have you actively worked on becoming a better bicyclist in the past year?

If you’re a highly self-improvement-focused person – which, if you’re reading this blog, I’m betting you are – then you may very well have worked on some of those things. The vast majority of people out there have not, however, for this simple reason:

The more you’re exposed to something, the more “natural” it feels, and the less it feels like a “skill” you should work on developing.

It doesn’t feel like a skill, because you do it all the time. But could you get a stronger, more powerful, sexier walk than you have right now if you worked on it a little? Could you get a sexier, edgier, more commanding voice if you put some effort into it? Could you become a better driver or a better bicyclist if you actively tried to?

I’m betting you could.

Conversation is more nuanced than any of those, though; it’s made up of more variables, there’s more to keep track of, and it changes quite a bit depending on whom you’re talking to. Driving cars is always pretty much the same; sometimes it’s daylight, sometimes it’s nighttime; sometimes there are more cars or sometimes less; sometimes there are two lanes or three lanes or sometimes just one. But the variables are small and manageable.

In conversation, though, the conversationalist must manage a whole host of things. He has to manage how he’s feeling, what he’s expressing through his words, voice tone, and nonverbal communication, he has to read how others are feeling and what they are expressing, he has to steer the conversation so that it stays on productive and value-building topics and avoids destructive ones, he has to reward others’ efforts to contribute and provide value and remove embarrassment from them when they slip up and make a faux pas. And that’s just for starters.

So, being a talented conversationalist becomes one of those things that’s exceptionally rare. It’s quite uncommon to meet someone able to adeptly and adroitly navigate conversation – but it’s always refreshing when you do. Truly, hasn’t it felt great those few times you’ve met someone who was just so agreeable and pleasant to talk with and who made you feel accepted and understood right away and showed a genuine interest in you and curiosity to get to know you? You can probably count the number of people you’ve met in your life like that on one hand. Those people you’re thinking of were the good conversationalists.

Here are some of the benefits of being skilled in conversation:

  • People just like talking to you. You’re fun, easy, and low pressure to talk with. Whenever they talk to you, they feel good, relaxed, and accepted for whom they are. You become a breath of fresh air from all the other people they talk to in their day-to-day lives.
  • You get to know people very quickly. As a skilled conversationalist who’s mastered the deep dive, you quickly navigate down to the important stuff – stuff often others talk about only with their closest friends, or sometimes no one at all. This allows you to build a real connection and get past that awkward zone in a hurry where two people are talking but don’t really feel like they know each other.
  • You make deep friendships fast. A consequence of getting to know people fast, and one of the amazing benefits to the conversationalist of his skill, is being able to build a lot of very rapid, but very genuine, friendships and alliances with people. When you’re a good conversationalist, you can cover twenty or fifty or a hundred times as much ground in an hour of conversation than an unskilled conversationalist can. While Joe Average is still figuring out what his date likes to do for fun on the weekends, I’ve found out that mine dreams of living in Rome and wants to open her own pastry shop someday after she leaves the corporate world. That kind of connection leads to real friendship, because people know what you’re about, and know you know what they’re about, and the two of you are then able to let your guards down around each other and just be comfortable and genuine.
  • You get what you want a lot more. No sense denying it, simply for getting what you want from other people, being skilled in conversation is essential. Whether you’re trying to negotiate a deal or win over a potential new lover or talk your way onto an airplane that’s already finished boarding while you’re still at the check-in counter (as I have successfully done a few times in the past few years; that probably means I should just get to the airport earlier, though), the conversationalist is at great advantage over an ordinary individual who hasn’t put much thought or effort into improving his conversation. It gives you a decided, decisive edge that really is beyond valuable.

I’m probably forgetting half the reasons out there why you ought to invest in training yourself up in conversation, but you get the point. Conversation reaches tendrils into every aspect of your life; to ignore your skill as a conversationalist is to ignore one of the most significant skills you can possibly develop.


Makings of a Conversationalist

There is only one prerequisite for learning to be skilled in conversation, in my opinion: you must genuinely be interested in other people. If you aren’t, well, you can force yourself to a certain degree of aptitude by sheer willpower, but beyond that, you’ll have a hell of a struggle getting beyond an intermediate level in your conversational abilities.

However, even if you don’t find people terribly interesting at the moment, that may be simply because you haven’t gotten your skill at getting to know them well to a high enough level yet. Lots of people think golf is a terribly boring game, until they’ve played it enough times and get familiar with it. Then they come to find it quite engaging, and rather enjoy a good round of eighteen holes. Conversation and meeting new people may very well be that way for you later on down the road after you focus on upgrading your skills, experience, and exposure to it.

So, genuinely enjoy talking to people. You don’t have to genuinely enjoy small talk; me personally, I’m not a big fan of small talk, and I get past it pronto. What I’m really interested in is what makes people tick – what drives them, where are they going, where did they come from. Why do they do the things they do. This is the stuff a conversationalist is good at finding out.

Here are the skills I think you ought to focus on first when upping your skill tree. These are the building blocks everything else rests on in conversation:

  1. Get to the root. Conversation for normal people usually looks like this:

    Person A: What do you do?
    Person B: Oh, I’m an accountant.
    Person A: I see.
    Person B: And what do you do?
    Person A: I’m an engineer.
    Person B: Oh, okay. You must be good at math, then.
    Person A: I’m okay at it. How long have you been an accountant?
    Person B: About four years. And you, how long have you been an engineer?

    And on and on. Ouch, that’s a painful dialogue; no wonder no one likes small talk. Small talk is boring. But why is it so boring? Look carefully at that conversation above, and you’ll notice it’s extremely surface-level.Nowhere do we get to the meat of emotions, feelings, dreams, motivations, a person’s backstory; the stuff that’s really, truly important to people. Person B may be an accountant, but her job as an accountant is not what defines her, and we don’t really know her all that much better by finding out that she’s an accountant and she’s been an accountant for four years. Here’s how we get to know her:

    Person A: What do you do?
    Person B: Oh, I’m an accountant.
    Person A: Hmm, I see. Accounting… why accounting? Why not finance, investment banking… why choose the field you did?
    Person B: Well, I guess… because it was an easier major to get into when I was in school!
    Person A: Really? You’re doing the job you’re doing now because it was easier to get into in college? That’s crazy! How long have you been doing it?
    Person B: About four years.
    Person A: Wow, four years in a job because it was an easier major. Okay, well, tell me this: erase college. If you could jump into any job in the world, regardless of how easy the major was in college, what would you be doing other than accounting? Or is accounting your dream job?[said with a smile and a wink since you know it’s not – she’s already said she’s only in it because it was easy, and besides, who wants to be an accountant? (advance apologies to all the accountants out there who actually love it!)]


    All the other guy managed to find out with his initial conversation was that Person B is an accountant and she’s been one for about four years. With the same number of lines of dialogue – count ‘em, there are four lines of dialogue for Person A in both conversation examples – our second guy has managed to find out not only that the person he’s talking to is an accountant and has been for about four years, but also that she’s doing it because it was an easy major in college, and it’s probably not something she really dreams about doing.

    And now she’s going to tell him what she does dream of doing.

    Not bad for four lines of dialogue. That’s what getting to the root is about.
  1. Help others think. Being a good conversationalist typically means you’ll be being a bit demanding of others, intellectually speaking. People prefer to talk about themselves, and conversationalists are talented at getting others talking about themselves, but people sometimes need a little help to avoid getting confused, frustrated, or worn out. Helping the people they’re conversing with to think more easily is one of the ways a conversationalist gets people talking more about themselves than they do when talking with others, and it helps prevent the person he’s talking to end up in a conversation that feels mentally taxing or draining.

    If you noticed in the last example above, the question of, “Why accounting?” is fleshed out beyond just the words “why accounting.” We say “why accounting,” but then we also list a handful of suggestions and clarify the question – “Why not finance, investment banking… why choose the field you did?

    If you ask a question that’s too open-ended, people can feel lost in the spotlight. It’s like being on-stage without cue cards or a teleprompter; they’ve been put on the spot and start to panic mentally. When you phrase a question like how we did in that example, though, with a few alternative suggestions for what Person B might have done rather than accounting, and then give a specific question to jog her memory of what’s being asked, you light the path for her basically and make it much easier for her to come up with the response you’re looking for and answer your question.

    The mind generally goes through a process like this:

    Why accounting? Oh, I don’t know… Oh, why not finance or investment banking? Because I didn’t major in those in college. Why did I choose accounting? Oh, right – because it was an easy major in college. I didn’t major in those other ones because they were more difficult to get into and I was a little lazy in school.

    And just like that, you’ve helped her think through her response, just by listing a few alternatives and restating the question. This is useful with a wide variety of topics:

    “Why move to London, then? Why not New York, or Paris, or Tokyo? Why come here to London-town when you could go just about anywhere?”

    “Why get your Master’s? Why not keep working, or use your spare time to travel the world or write a book? Why go back to school?”

    “Why break up with your boyfriend? Why not marry him? Why not just keep seeing him the way things were? Why call it quits?”


    All kinds of things you can use this for. The point is, you want to help people think more easily, and that gets conversation flowing fast and naturally and it frees their minds to process the more important, deeper aspects of the conversation since you’ve already handled the basic stuff for them and provided the framework to answer you with.
  1. Relate. Obviously, the flipside of things is that you don’t want this to be an interview. You need to be relating to what you hear from others. Balance is quite key here; you don’t want to overdo it and come across like you’re trying to impress or force a connection, but you also don’t want to underdo it and come across like you don’t relate and she’s talking nonsense to you that you don’t connect with.

    This is where the “art” comes into play in the art of conversation. I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a way of breaking down exactly what that balance is – we’ve done it for things as seemingly random as how many “I” pronouns versus how many “you” pronouns you ought to have in conversation (keep them as close to equal as possible), so there probably is a way. I just haven’t figured it out yet, and I’m not aware of anyone else who has either.

    I’d say a good rule of thumb is to relate on things that you intuit someone else might be slightly embarrassed about; e.g., if you’re talking to someone and she mentions that she’s had so much bad luck lately, you commiserate and tell her you go through strings like that as well, where nothing ever goes your way; then you turn it back to her and ask her what good things have happened to her lately. Relate too on important topics; if the two of you have been talking about something that’s obviously important to her, and you haven’t related to it, you should.

    Again, learning the proper way to relate in a convincing, genuine way without seeming like you’re trying to force things is going to take practice. I can remember a few years back when people would tell me things about themselves that I just didn’t know how to relate to. For instance, I had a 21 year old girl tell me three years ago about how her Navy ex-husband had cheated on her, and she found out, so she cheated back – I had no idea how to relate to that at the time; I think I blurted something out like, “Yeah, sometimes guys in the Navy, you know, lots of temptation overseas.” These days, I’d handle that easily: “Ah, people. They do crazy things, and some of ‘em you can’t trust farther than you can throw ‘em. What’re you gonna do?” But that’s just because I’ve been through enough conversations where I was struggling awkwardly to relate to something I didn’t really know how to relate to properly at the time.

    Remember, relating is how you make people feel good in a conversation. If you don’t relate to them, they’ll feel like what they’re saying is falling on deaf ears, and they’ll start clamming up. The better a job you do relating, the more people will feel like you “get” them, and the more they will want to tell you about themselves to help you understand them even better.
  1. Turn it back to her. Most men, you get them talking about themselves, and it becomes a spout that just doesn’t shut off. There’s this voice in men’s brains that seems to say, “I must position myself as impressively as possible; I must show people how amazing I am!” Men thus feel compelled to tell everyone who will listen how wonderful and cool and successful they are, and show this off through stories of their successes and tales of their feats.

    Good conversationalists? No such penchant. Ask a conversationalist what he does for a living, and he’ll build some intrigue with a short, interesting-sounding reply. By way of an example, people ask me what I’m doing right now, I tell them I’m traveling and finishing my first book. I also have a few startup companies I’m launching, but I don’t typically tell them that until later on, because traveling and writing a book is intriguing enough in its own right. After I tell them that little snippet about myself, I then turn it back on them.

    How about you, how are you spending your time these days?” I’ll ask.

    The conversationalist should spend maybe 20% of a conversation talking about himself, and 80% of a conversation engaging his partner to find out more about her and listening to her. When you’re just starting out, it’ll probably be more like 50-50 or 60-40, but you should gradually be paring down how much you talk about yourself with time, and focus more on talking about your partner, and sometimes about people in general. Sometimes, you won’t even talk about yourself at all, and that’s okay.
  1. Manage the conversational flow. Something that frustrated the hell out of me once I started deep diving and relating was that my conversations would get deeper and deeper and deeper, until eventually we went so deep that there would be this sudden shift, almost like the spell had broken, and I and the other person I was talking to would suddenly find ourselves stranded back on the shores of superficiality and neither of us knew how to get back to where we’d been before. It was like the whole conversation had been a dream, and we’d just woken up – then couldn’t fall back asleep again.

    These days, I’ve taken to managing the flow better – I take things deep, but bring them back up again periodically with a little lighthearted teasing or a witty comment here or there, or pointing out that something in the conversation is silly or doesn’t make sense. I then take it back down deeper again. It ends up looking like this:

    Person B: … and then I never heard from him again. He just disappeared. I felt awful for three months.
    Person A: Wow, that’s terrible. [pause for maybe five seconds, let the dust settle from the deep emotions] So I guess you feel a lot better these days! [said with warmth and a smile]
    Person B: Yeah, I do.
    Person A: That’s the cool thing about bad, sad experiences – people are strong, and we bounce back. Even if it feels pretty bad for a while, it doesn’t stay feeling bad forever. We’d never make any progress that way.
    Person B: You’re so right.
    Person A: So after this guy pulled his disappearing act, what’d you do to get your life back in order?


    Person B is sharing this very deep, emotionally powerful experience, but it reaches a conclusion. Person A brings her back up from that; he commiserates, then makes it light and airy again, like a breath of fresh air. He tells her she must be feeling a lot better now; she agrees. All that darkness she was feeling earlier fades away, and she feels good and warm in his company. He’s taken her down, but brought her back up again.

    Remember that voice tone is very important here. You can use different tones, and sound cold and insensitive saying Person A’s lines with one, or warm and considerate saying them with another. Play around with your voice tones to get the right ones. Watch a lot of movies with strong, confident, charming characters, and learn to talk like they talk.

    So Person A does a bit of inspirational talk, and then he goes back into the deep dive again, finding out more about Person B’s life’s trajectory and getting her talking about what she did after this experience. It’s natural to go back into it now that she’s come up for air; now they can go back down again for a little bit, before coming back up again later.

    Managing the conversational flow like this does two things for you:

    • It keeps things from getting so intense and heavy that people start feeling a need to break out of the oppressive intimacy of the conversation and free themselves, and

    • It gives your conversation partner a shot of good feeling and reassurance and, most importantly, perspective, giving her the strength to continue through her story, whether it’s a happy memory she’s discussing or a painful one.

    If you’ve ever seen the movie The NeverEnding Story, the feel of this movie is exactly the feel of what you should be going for in your management of the conversational flow. The story intensely sucks you in, at times feels overbearing, but then you get sucked out of it and everything is put back into perspective when Bastian closes the book and stops reading. He takes a break. Then he goes back into the book and we get sucked back in. That’s the feel of it.
  1. You must not judge. There is this social enforcing behavior we all tend to get instilled with very early on in life, and it’s called “judging.” We use it to put social pressure on others to conform to our views about what is correct behavior and avoid engaging in incorrect behavior. If someone engages in enough incorrect behavior, we judge them quite poorly, and effectively consider them out of our social class, clique, or tribe.

    Here’s the thing: the more you judge, and the more harshly you judge, the more you limit your social potential. Almost everyone you meet is going to have things that clash with something or other about your own personal beliefs and values systems. If you take issue with people over that kind of thing – even if you just take issue inwardly, but try to be friendly outwardly – people will sense it; they sense the gulf between the two of you, and they close up.

    No conversation. No connection. Just awkwardness, and a desire for the interaction to end as quickly as possible.

    The conversationalist does not judge. He teaches himself not to judge on the inside as well as on the outside; he accepts that many people are different from him, but that different doesn’t equal bad, and he forces himself to stop having bad, negative, derogatory thoughts about others because he know it will cripple his ability to succeed socially.

    Don’t judge. It cuts your legs out from the standpoint of connection-, friendship-, and relationship-building. People are infinitely more honest with you when they can tell they’re being accepted by you for whom they are, free of judgment. The sizeable boost in trust and depth of bonding with others that you gain from getting over any judgmental tendencies you have now is well worth the month or so of work you’ll put in of monitoring your thoughts and shutting down judgmental thoughts about other people to rewire your learned thought processes.

    Judgment is learned, and it’s unlearned as well. I suggest you remain discriminating – certainly you will be choosy about having top quality people in your life – while simultaneously freeing yourself of the burden of being judgmental. In addition to opening up whole new social vistas to you, you will find you actually feel much better without a cluster of negative judgments running around in your head poisoning your thoughts.
  1. Be a lighthouse. I’m an Aquarius. That means that I have a great deal of empathy for other people, but also that I’m quite emotionally detached. I don’t get affected by things the way others do, but I care about them enough that I want to see them do well and succeed and prosper and feel good and confident.

    If there is one thing that drives me nuts when it comes to conversationalists, it’s seeing a guy who’s good at conversing but who clearly doesn’t give a damn about the people he’s talking to. You know, the guy who’s focused more on himself and what he has to say than he is on the other person and couldn’t tell you how someone else is feeling to save his life.

    I recommend walking a mental mile in the shoes of everyone you talk to. Put yourself in every person you meet’s position and ask yourself how you’d feel if you were them. It’s enlightening. And it also makes you realize how much people need you to be an uplifting, motivating, strong person for them.

    I call this being a lighthouse. The lighthouse is the beacon on the rocks that guides ships to safe passage, no matter the weather conditions. It’s a sign of hope, and also one of strength; a solitary beam of light in the darkness. You should seek to provide hope, encouragement, strength, and high spirits to those you speak with. Be honest and realistic, of course; if someone proposes a business or relationship idea to you that you know will fail, for instance, tell them you have some fairly strong reservations about it, but give them much credit for being creative or hopeful, and perhaps suggest an alternative they might use.

    Again, you must balance this; you don’t want to be so wildly optimistic that it’s patently unbelievable. You want to provide gentle, subtle guidance and support; not be crazy happy, but exude more of a calm, guiding confidence that the person you’re talking to will be okay no matter what path she chooses.


Training Yourself Up as a Conversationalist

Obviously, if you want to be good as a conversationalist, you’re going to need to go have a lot of conversations. Beyond that, there are a few other things I can recommend you do to get yourself started.

  • Form a plan of attack. I recommend only working on one or two of the above points at a time. I listed seven of them – too many to work on at once. You don’t conquer the world by attacking the entire world; you conquer the world one country at a time. So it is with this – bite off one chunk at a time and go from there.
  • Identify your own deficiencies in conversation to use as a starting point. If you have an awful time getting past small talk, start with that. Work on deep diving and see if you can get into some real conversation about real stuff. If you have the bad habit of talking too much about yourself, get better at turning the conversation back to the other person. If you find yourself saying or thinking negative things sometimes, focus on clearing judgmental beliefs out of your system and strive to be a lighthouse.
  • Pay more attention to what people are telling you… and not telling you. If there are things about people you’d like to know, but don’t, find ways to start getting them to tell you that information. Usually you’ll start out rather clumsily, just asking for it; as you hone your skill, you become more and more adept in getting people telling you what you want to know. Eventually you can reach the point where people enjoy talking to you so much and become so eager to connect with you that if you simply bring them to a topic, they will proactively tell you the things you’re curious to know without you even needing to ask.
  • Get more experiences. The more things you do, and the more things you get comfortable with, the better you’ll be able to relate to people. When I first started working on my skill as a conversationalist, I suddenly began taking on a variety of very different activities (international travel, language studies, social activities and mixers, sports, martial arts classes, dance classes, acting, modeling, photography) in part because they interested me, but also in part because I wanted to have these experiences to be able to relate to more people more easily. Most of them I didn’t spend a huge amount of time doing, but I’m now able to relate to anyone who talks to me about snowboarding, or traveling to Europe, or learning Spanish, or dancing salsa, or going to a photo shoot because I’ve done those things at least a little bit.
  • Get talking (with new people). Meet new people, get into conversations. It’s different when you’re talking with classmates, or officemates, or family members, or old friends. You know them; you don’t have much work to do to get to know more about them. Meeting new people forces you to learn how to get to real conversation fast, because you don’t have a lot of time. Take too much time dancing around with small talk, and most people will start feeling uncomfortable (the result of lacking the formation of a connection or finding common ground fast enough) and leave. You meet a wider variety of people, with a wider variety of life experiences, and a wider variance of tolerances and conversationalist aptitudes in their own rights, so you are constantly having to adjust and make changes on the fly. This is hands down the best, most reliable, most effective way to get conversational abilities down; meeting lots of new people is a bit of a gauntlet, but it’s a gauntlet that will see you come out the other end much improved.

When should you start? Well, the cool thing about conversation is you’re always having it. So I recommend you begin training yourself up as a conversationalist the next time you have a conversation.

Get good at talking to people. It’s a game changer in pretty much every way;becoming a talented conversationalist is one of the most fundamental, significant ways you can improve yourself, period. So don’t put this one off until tomorrow – start improving the very next time you say “hi” to someone. It’s worth every ounce of the effort you put into it, and the payoffs will last you a lifetime.

Yours,
Chase Amante

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Comments

Lau'Ram'Bo's picture

Pimp article, so detailed and


Pimp article, so detailed and very beneficial. This would
be a strong force to be reckon with, connecting with anybody in general.
Especially since they really love talking about themselves.
When crack the glass barrier of theirs.
I never thought of this, I try not talking about myself much anyway.
But it breaks it down in more vivid details, to me. Thanks for another
self improvement post.

Chase Amante's picture

Re: Pimp article, so detailed and

Author

Lau'Ram'Bo, you're quite welcome. Thanks for your kind words, and thanks for commenting!

Chase

teakroy's picture

Thanks


Thanks for sharing this precious information on the internet,for many years i study to atract girl and other things,in a world that competion is very tough,i think you are the best ,
you have a good way to describe emotional feelings that you feel at that time when you was building your mentality ,focus and anticipation of others .
:)

Chase Amante's picture

Re: Thanks

Author

Teakroy, thanks for the praise, and you're quite welcome!

Cheers,
Chase

Anonymous's picture

"By way of an example, people


"By way of an example, people ask me what I’m doing write now, I tell them I’m traveling and finishing my first book."

>write now
>finishing first book

lol'd

Chase Amante's picture

Re: "By way of an example, people

Author

Argh. Good catch -- corrected. So much for me being a grammarian...

Chase

Jeremy's picture

hi chase your articles are


hi chase your articles are amazing I have been working on myself for about a year now and I am starting my journey the thing i wanted to ask you is how do you deep dive? I know how it works and all but i still don't get how to apply it will you help me out?

Chase Amante's picture

Re: hi chase your articles are

Author

Hi Jeremy,

How do you deep dive? Ah man, it's one of those things that's easy to show, but not so easy to describe. Like trying to teach how to ski or how to shoot a basketball.

My best articles on understanding deep diving are here:

Those should give you a pretty solid start.

I'm also releasing a video series at the end of this month that really breaks down deep diving and conversational technique into easy-to-use and easy-to-understand basics and shows how to use them. So I might recommend checking that out too if you want to really pick the skill up in a hurry.

Hope this helps, brother!

Best,
Chase

kkwickweezy's picture

Wow i am very happy I found


Wow i am very happy I found this site. You do have a suave way with words. Very intelligent way of thinking. But it seems to me like you make out every conversationalist to be a good person who empowers or light houses people. I personally know good conversationalist but they are all fake and cheat on there girlfriends using there suave skills to 1. lie to there girlfriends and 2. get girls on side. They are my friends however, and obv I side with them and dont judge or look at them differently because to each his own..but they use woman and are the type to not really care what women are saying but they deep dive into there emotions for there pleasure. Me, I want to learn from you and I hope ur skills can help me if I really try because I am lonely and have always been. The love of my life, or so I thought just walked out on me about 8 months ago.. and it has been tuff. only my second girlfriend ever go figure im 24..But you give me hope. I want to be a good person and help others feel good thru converstation, however I also want to learn how to talk to girls an sway them into liking me as well.. but i am loyal to every1. If I can start learning these skills and inturn start making girls chase me I would be happy but if I did find that 1 that i felt was a keeper i would never cheat on her.. just saying.. anyways, I just started reading your work and so far I feel more positive in the fact that I believe I have a chance now thru your guidance. Thanks

chyeahsir's picture

How about you? And you? and you? and you?


From Dave Carnegie and yourself, I've heard "people love talking about themselves" which is great advice and insight. My question is what happens when 2 conversationalists meet? I imagine a black hole forming. If they keep talking about the other person it falls into an infinite loop asking about the other...well maybe this would only happen if 1/7 points existed and the other 6 points shoot this problem away.

Michael Swan's picture

My sticking points with deep dive


It may be my execution, but I found two weaknesses I personally have using just this technique.

1. The conversation tends to get little interview:y, especially when the point2 arises and you need to ask more questions.

2. Sometimes target doesn't really have much to say. Why are you studying xxx / what are your passions in life? "I don't know"

Maybe it comes to the calibration and the target herself, but the 20% / 80% thing, i'm unsure how it works with certain kind of targets, I feel like spicing it up with something might be better for the overall vibe / spark.

May I ask how much do you use this method with "stupid" targets, do you perhaps balance the conversation by telling stories or other playful pua:ish stuff, then shuffle back to this or is it just deep dive?

Thanks, love your theory about the attraction window/time frame!

seank's picture

phonetics


I think your article is pretty impressive and probably one of the most interesting things I've seen on your site, I've got to confess Im not huge on the picking up of girls but 6 months ago I could barely talk to my bros let alone girls. I think one important thing you left out is phonetics. I found being able to talk was linked directly to how well I could read and write. I began writing a diary and doing reflexive poetic exercises where Id write the first things coming into my head was very very helpful not in the subject matter but the presentation of my conversations.

Anonymous's picture

After reading multiple articles from you tonight


great articles man, especially this one, although I really liked your article on focusing on results and not reactions, I am a sucker for that one as I usually focus to be an entertainer at social events with my friends or by myself; incredibly enlightening man, I thank you for that....

anyways, this is the fifth one I've read tonight. I feel like I've had some of these conversationalist points down since I was in middle school. I'm the type of guy who doesn't talk much but loves listening to people; is emotionally-detached but has a obvious amount of empathy for others, and I have a close knit of friends who highly respect each other because we each have passionate personalities (I've actually never stuck to one group and would always drift to different ones and would never get close to anyone - loner lol but I guess it paid off in the end now that my peeps say my group is fun to hang out with).. One thing I noticed in some of your other articles is that you're very analytically and actively observant especially in the social world. I'ts pretty crazy finding out that theres another person with a similar psychological background like yours in a different part of the world. Makes me excited to just get out there and meet people now =) although obviously you are more successful than I am in terms of women and life experiences - I've barely turned 21 and am fairly new to even entering dive bars.. There are many others like your website that I've read and delved upon but yours is as realistic, practical, and innovative as it gets; simply, I dig it haha. Just wanted to say you give hope man and to many others like me out there and I thank you for that.

I cant remember half of the things I wrote above but hopefully it makes sense. Will keep reading your other articles, maybe save some money to buy your book later ;) Keep it up!!!

Anonymous's picture

so what exactly do you do


so what exactly do you do when they're vague about responses? Like:

me: so what made you go into the field you did?
her: ohhh i don't know haha

does this mean she's not interested?

Wesley's picture

Thanks


Hey Chase, just wanted to say that i am so very thankful for this blog. I just ran into it a couple days ago and i've read so much. Everything seems so obvious now and i couldn't have run into it at a more perfect time. i just graduated high school a few months ago (which were the hardest four years of socializing in my entire life...i could not get past the superficial with anyone) and now i'm beginning to see improvements with everyone, not just the ladies. Girls are asking to spend time with me now!

Anonymous's picture

ptsd, sociopathy, depersonalization, metacognition junkie...


ur different, lol, ur scary good, i posted on dominance... i know, im scary good, and u sound like me, albeit with different motivations, but u get ppl, at a very deep level... ive had over 500 5 hr convos with strangers... lol, heard ur the first person ive told, too many times, occasionally meeting you prevented me from suicide, u changed my life is common... i literally, had 7 hr convo today, 2 hr few days ago, lol, im addicted to conversation, and ppl make it hard, they get hooked too... ppl love to self disclose, and the more u see, the less ur surprised... ppl fish for non-verbal cues that they can self disclose... and when they're there... they let it all out, ppl become addicted to finally being allowed to be open... in a way, ur addictive... because ur vicarious experiences open the realm of realistic and valid viewpoints to endlessness, nothing seems strange... and the empathy, and yet ironic detachment, allows u 2 better understand people, u care, but u project what they need, not wut u want, because your detachment allows you not to impulsively react due to emotions, or use emotions as valuative cues

exposure to diversity is unrecognized either... i dont judge people, i dislike behavior, but ppl and beavior are distinct to me... the heterogeineity of ppl ive been exposed to... lol, and the interesting common underlying motivations make it hard to judge... and ur right, people sense judgement, because they're hypervigilant in seeking behavioural cues which suggest discomfort towards things theyre sensitive about... lol, i seriously need to chat with u... cause my guess, vicarious trauma... explains the empathy yet the detachment, u have to be there for the person in need, u empathize, yet u have to detach to function optimally, to provide the care ur empathy calls for... i cud be wrong tho, but u realize, ur talking to ppl who can't quite get where u r, at least via practice, because often, we become this way out of exposure to situations in which we have little choice... so luckily never had to work up the courage to know what we do, piecemeal, the lack of choice in the situations which induce this emotional style, are what give you this insight and allow you to dominate, you simply don't process the world in the same way, i have very little fear, my amygdala is fried, so i have the luxury of observing anxiogenic encounters instead of being within them, it's like viewing the forest, instead of the trees... there\s more, but i'll stop, irregardless... ur the real deal, and well, im highly regarded in my skill level in mental health, and no one can explain it, i read the same books, same rotations... lol... but seriously, ur stuff is eerily true... i experience very similar things, almost to a cue, and well, i'm regarded very highly, and often too apathetic to explain how i know what i know, but ur vivid descriptions have really sent chills, guess there are other ppl like me... customers... im not even interested in getting laid, but this guy is so the real deal, lol, and his techniques will work, for those ends, as well as others of course... so i'd unequivocally recommend, and im scary good, altho i guess i have different ends, lol, more helping ppl with probs, but, i dont judge, some ppls probs are confidence, lack of connection... and this guys posted one of the best accounts ive read... and i listen to pre-eminent theorists weekly, bravo!

LoverBoy's picture

My God, Mr. Chase you are


My God, Mr. Chase you are men's godsend.

Now all the man in the world is going to become like you and the females will be hunting you down to remove this blog.

Whatever it is. Thanks so much for sharing such incredible wisdom of yours.

I hereby salute you on behalf of all men in the world who stumble onto your amazing blog.

Thank you.

marvin's picture

I'm new to this field. I've


I'm new to this field. I've learned to pick up mood, intent, or a lie through body language, tone, eye contact, and writing style. Talking to people was my kryptonite. You have aided me into making those connections. I enjoy deep diving. You sir are very talented at your trade. I would like to know what drove you. The love of people? Being lonely? Or was it the challenge?

Anonymous's picture

please please help me....


so im a senior in college. ive met this one girl at one of our social event (im in a fraturnaty).. she got a boyfriend that lives far away. i didnt know that when i first met her.. so we start talking and we cant stop.. she invited me to her place and hangout before a party we were both going (with her roomate and one other guy) . we were hangout the whole time at the party, she was teaching me how to dance..
when i try to take a step further she said she cant do it cause she has a bf.. so another girl i kinda knew came to me and we started talking, and she left me to hanout with other people.. i dont know what happend to her.. thats it for that night..
i added her on fb and got her number. and two nights later i was with another girl in a bar( just met that night.. i were super drunk..kinda made out with her) .. and she came up to us.. we started talking again... she told me how she have second thought bout her dating her bf.. cause she wants more freedom in college.. and she started talkin with the girl i was with.. i dont really remember much.. all i know is i left alone and went home.. i drunk fb messaged her.. and this is the conversation went down at 2:30 am
Me: M!!.. u shoud've felt it!!.....i felt the same!

ehh...i should go to sleep...
Her: What

Me: i tried to delete it....

Her: Delete what

Me:hows ur night M?

Her: good
Me: ha ha ok. u ruined my night

Her: How
Me: nah, i shouldt say anthing else

im drunk but u shold know. u r bad
Her: How am I bad
Me: ha ha.... M.. whats the fun?
Her: I didn't do anything..
Me: lol... i would say the exactly the same thing. we r so alike

ms" i didnt do anything" good night

good seeing u at the bar tho... u looked prettu

pretty*
end
i know its embarassing.. i texted her two days later ask her what was she up to and she didnt text me back... i know my chance is near zero now... i try to talk to other girls.. but i cant forget bout her.. all i want to do is to hangout with her one more time and get to know her more before im done.. ehh.. i dont know what to do.. im wondering if the Master (you of course) have any tips...

Anonymous's picture

Own it


Hey man, my best advice for you if you ever see her in person again is go up to her completely own up to being a massive vagina by saying " Hi, I need to apologize to you. I was having a bad night, I was really wasted, and I was a complete fucking douchebag to you whom I really like and am attracted to. I am not always this much of a dick, its just alcohol and my penis make me say dumb things. Won't ever happen again. Let's start over." And go on with something cheery and interesting.

I would say it very matter of factly and confidently keeping good eye contact but also voicing some personality. That might at least get you back into the talking zone. The fact that you had the courage to go back to her after making an ass out of yourself shows her that you mean business as far as being a man and wanting to be around her, and I think she will respect you for being genuine and your forwardness. Remember even if it falls apart, it's a win that you are evening going to try. Be independent of your outcome.Good luck.

Mustainester's picture

Sentence starters.


Hey Chase! Really helpful article and your book is splendid (I've had success a lot)! But there was something I wanted to ask you. I have a really self annoying habit of starting just about every new topic and a lot of sentences with the word 'So'. Is it good or not?I fell it makes me come off as permission seeking. Please Help?

Anonymous's picture

Bloody hell, this is just


Bloody hell, this is just what i was searching for! I've always had trouble keeping up with conversations and am trying to improve my game in order to expand my social circle.

The examples were a great way to clearly explain the topic, not just empty words!

Thank you for this blog

Bernie's picture

Thank you!!


In an introvert by nature and having over protective parents that like kept you in the house a lot when you were younger makes for a struggling young adult now in college. This helps me out tremendously. THANKS AGAIN!! :D glad I found this website.

Anonymous's picture

What a read!!


Trust me, its been a while since i have come across something that is so brilliantly put, that even me could just GET it. Superb read. Thanks a ton bud, hopeful to come through some Dope like this often from you.

Cheers!!

Scot's picture

Male view on conversation


Thanks for writing up these suggestions and guidelines. Good stuff.

Pop quiz (for my own benefit):
- ask towards the roots
- ask with suggestions
- move from 5o/50 to 80/20
- relate to downer/heavy stuff (resurface, acceptance, encouragement)

Onwards --- you brought up a question about why guys seem to naturally fall into dominate/impress mode. My theory is as follows: people generalize based on their own experience - guys assume that everyone works like guys; guys compete; ergo, conversation with people equates to verbal competition with guys, and what impresses me will impress everyone else. Short answer, I guess is self-centeredness? FWIW.

Anonymous's picture

need help man


What's up man
I'm new to this ,actually I'm still in high school
I'm having some difficulty with relating and making statements in conversations man.I noticed that one can't always everytime ask questions this will make the conversation seem like an interview so obviously u will have to make statements and relate .so could u please please give some explaination on relating and making statements in brief and give a few examples on each of them
Please man,help a brother out

Anonymous's picture

relating


Hello chase
Your articles are great man ,I really look up to you man and I'm only in high school.I realised that becasue I'm only in high school I should focus more on sharpening my social skills.and this article just broke it down for me.however I'm finding some of the points difficult to do or use in conversations ,like relating ,and sometimes listening actively.
Can you please explain relating in more detail and give some examples
How do I relate ? At what point ?

Me:so what's your name ?
Her:kylee
Me:hmm...interesting ,what does it mean ?
Her:well ,actually its a combination of my dad and moms name
Me:hmm...that's smart,I can tell you're the only child
Blah blah blah

Can u also give ur own examples ,please chase

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