Do You Lead Conversations… Or Leave Others Hanging?

Talking effectively is about more than just knowing how to talk: it is about knowing why to talk.

lead a conversation

Never simply waste your effort being a blabber mouth; have a direction, a purpose, and, if nothing else, be conducive to the atmosphere you are looking to build by acting in line with it.

Leading a conversation is essential for helping people lose their anxieties and feel comfortable around you. To achieve that task you have to step up to the plate and avoid the trap of being dependent on others to do all the lifting. You then need to guide the conversation topics in a way that reflects what direction you are thinking of moving in.

The Dependency Trap

The number one mistake in conversations is dependency. We either blabber on or we expect others to carry us, but either way the root cause is the same: you are failing to lead the conversation.

The biggest problem with failing to lead conversations is that you are relying on other people to be omniscient or “all-capable” when even you are not, which is a recipe for disaster because you can’t really entrust your responsibilities to other people... because if you do it is very unlikely they will care (people are busy with their own stuff).

Relying on other people to lead the conversation without doing your part to help them is a sure way to allow a conversation to death spiral into the ground when they decide to not bother lifting the conversation either.

So just resolve within yourself to make sure you lead every conversation you are in at least a little so that dependency issues aren’t a BIG thing.

I know it is easier said than done, but the reason I say this isn’t just to state some common sense; the reason I am saying this is because being aware of why you are taking a direction is important in taking it confidently.

If you are going to skip any floundering and “give me permission” speech patterns and create an even and balanced natural feeling conversation, you will need to start understanding how to be an inoffensive leader of conversation.

Getting started - a few simple keys to having a good motivation:

  1. Not having a selfish intent initially (it’s best the first intent is always just for a good time and mutual benefit)
  1. Getting the other person over their initial reservations and into a comfortable social place as quickly and as smoothly as possible
  1. Keeping the first conversation topic neutral or disarming/easy
  1. Encouraging a person to inspire at least SOME of the direction of the conversation

Generally, people will feel more comfortable if you encourage them to be and back up that comfort with constant reinforcement. At the very minimum, you want to achieve that in all your conversations and not leave people hanging and carrying all the weight.

Keeping these few points in mind will help you accomplish that without being too demanding or rigid.

Always Move Into Good Territory

When attempting to get conversations out of idle and into a free-flowing state, remember that conversations should overlap in creative ways, so instead of cornering off all conversations and pigeonholing them, let them leak spontaneously into other conversations, and then follow the most interesting and engaging ideas.

You ever heard of that kind of guy who looks for the best place to be, and then goes there? Well this is the kind of guy you want to be in conversations. You want to always be looking for the best things you can talk about and you want to avoid things that will make the situation become a drag.

lead a conversation

You don’t need to be perfect or overly-enthusiastic, you just need some humble but active goals that stave off falling into slowness/confusion and the dependency it creates.

Make sure you keep a healthy amount of spontaneity in the conversations so that you always find novel directions, and can steer towards the best ones.

Empower Others and Then Share

Being a good conversationalist doesn’t necessarily mean maintaining the conversation all by yourself (as this makes the other person feel dependent upon you and weak). You want people to feel strong and to have their own interesting stories to share because this helps you build rapport and it helps carry the conversation and make your task easier.

Leading conversations is actually more about getting THEM comfortably talking than it is about you “stealing the show”.

The reason you want to get them talking isn’t because you want them to like you more, but, contrastingly, you want to help them show their best side, and provide value to YOU, because this will provide you clues on what to do, where to go, and how to best treat them.

Conversation has a great use to you because it will enable you to make the best of the people you are with, make the best decisions possible, and will help you have more interesting, productive, and helpful people around you by empowering them to express themselves freely.

Adjusting Your Conversational Style

With even a simplistic understanding of different directions you can take a conversation to create different effects, you can start to get away from “talking for talking’s sake” and have a gentle push in the direction you want the conversation to go.

If you want to be friendly at first, and then sexual later, you must understand that people tend to assume that you will continue in the direction you started. To change your conversational style it is best if you don’t get too stuck in just one style so that people are aware that you are more than just a single-minded person. So keep in mind that if you are going to change it is best you start changing conversation topics in a manner that will make the direction you eventually go not seem too abrupt.

If you change your conversational style you can make yourself more appealing as a friend, or as a lover, and you can help things be more spontaneous or even more directed. The reality of the situation is you simply want to use more of one type of conversation than another to illustrate to a person the direction you intend to take the conversation overall.

Do you want to make friends? Do you want to have casual sex? Do you want something spontaneous? Do you want to find out more about someone before you make up your mind?

It’s important to understand what you want first of all because it will change what kinds of reactions you are looking for in a girl and what kind of directions you want to encourage or steer towards.

Here I’ve made some different conversation options in order to make it easier for you to understand the most fundamental directions of conversation.


If you want to make friends you want to keep things less sexual and more about common interests. There are many advantages to making female friends, or friends in general.

Keeping people friendly assures that they are on your side and working towards your interests. You can have conversations, talk about in-depth things, and minimize the amount of friction that a relationship would otherwise bring.

Casual Sex:

If you want to have more casual sex, you want to start working on making a woman become sexier and more vibrant around you so you have further reason to work for it and create a great experience.

lead a conversation

This is all about knowing what kinds of things you can say to make a girl let her hair down and to take a sign of relief that you aren’t just “another guy” out just to satisfy his own ego and be otherwise unattractive.


If you want to simply not care what happens and throw caution to the wind, then you might just want to talk about whatever comes to mind that’s funniest or most interesting at the time. This is great for when you just don’t know where you want things to go and you want your feet to take you there.

Finding Out More:

If you want to find out more about a woman before you make up your mind, then make sure to bring out the better sides of her so she can inspire you with ideas of how you can maybe do something with her. It is always best to be an open person, even when intentionally judging others, so if you help bring out the best side of a person’s character then you can make a much more directed choice.

The purpose of these foundational conversation ideas is for you to keep in mind what you are encouraging and what you are letting slip. You’ll find that it is best to shift and move between different styles to create the right mix for yourself, so don’t be afraid to experiment with it and learn about the different pros/cons and contexts for each and how to best combine them to compliment what things you would like to see take place.

Lead the conversation to make others feel natural and happy to come along for the ride. Talking should be an extension of your ability to make people feel at ease, and to appear effortlessly charming.

A person that is a great conversationalist may not even NEED to talk to make people feel comfortable: just knowing that they are there and capable of talking makes someone feel at ease, knowing that if the moment requires it, they can break any strange social situations into a scene that is fun and free-flowing.

So snap out of any selfish shell dwelling and come out of your hidey-hole at least enough to make yourself easy to be around.

The number one reason to be a good conversationalist isn’t to make people sing your praises, it is to defuse miscommunications, help people feel at ease, and enhance the potential for having a great time when around you.

You don’t have to have all the moves, you just have to make sure you have people’s back, because that way, if you do come up with just the right things to say, they’ll be listening and you will be in just the right position to create the best effect.


Cody LyansAbout the Author: Cody Lyans

Girls Chase’s resident “man of mystery”, Cody shows shy, quiet guys how to turn these traits into assets. Girls call his style “cool and calibrated”; he’s adept at smoothly meeting girls everywhere from the beach to the dance floor. Cody prides himself on versatility, and specializes in both fast (~20 minute) hookups, and slow, sensual seductions. Book a phone coaching session with Cody today to learn from him directly.


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moon's picture

some conversation examples to illustrate the points discussed would have been great

Cody Lyans's picture

nice point, I can write one up with examples if you like

Ace's picture

Hey Cody,

Great article. However, I'm not totally clear on your discussion of transitioning from a friendly vibe to a more sexual one. If I understood this correctly, you mention that if you do want to shift conversational styles like that, it's important to not get stuck on a single style, but do eventually land on one so that it's clear what the purpose and vector of the conversation is.

Would a solid structure maybe look something like this...approach in a friendly manner, add a hint of sexuality here and there (perhaps in a look, or a quick remark), and then as the conversation goes on and I feel like I've gotten to know a little more about her, I move into a more sexually-focused conversation and guide it into more sexual topics?

Still trying to wrap my head around it all.

Thanks in advance!

Cody Lyans's picture

You start neutral/disarming, (like the list) then after that first few minutes, you cover the bases you feel are best.
I'll generally be spontaneous, find out more about where I wanna take it, then I'll either go friendly or more sexy.
But I'll flit between different things, and keep the ratio balanced towards the idea or as is necessary.

The idea is that one specific convo type should only be the emphasis if you are ok sacrificing the others. Generally you don't want to sacrifice off any of them as it gives you less flexibility. So ideally introduce all of them within the first 20 mins. So 5 mins on each is a reasonable assumption to make.

5 mins talking spontaneous, then five mins getting to know stuff, then weaving in sexy stuff, adding a little break with friendly stuff.
You don't want to indicate a constant convo topic too heavily or the girl will assume things.

Keep it mixed so she is on her toes, and so you can use any type you need as opportunities to use them come up.

These days I usually just befriend girls, casually talk about their sex life, then am more about asking questions to change my mind, then I am spontaneous.

So, you can really use it either way
You can create a hole and dig out
Or you can tread more commonly on stuff you prefer

But the common vein there is that you should avoid getting trapped, and you should do what makes you feel most free to talk about anything at any time.

Another thing to note, is that if you talk about one topic the whole time, you kinda have to put your money where your mouth is. So to give yourself more room to time events like you want, its best to change around a bit.

I'm never 100% certain on taking girls to bed, so it always translates into me being a bit more agile.
And I figure out what I want before the girl starts demanding.

Abood's picture

Hey Cody great article.

I have a problem and I need advice.

I met these girls ( let's call them A and B) in a party.. I took A's number to arrange an outing some other time with them. I called A and she got B with her and we all went out and had a good time. I noticed me and B hit it off and had a good fun conversation, but I dint take her number because I felt that there is no need since I reach A through her and they live together. So it doesn't really affect the suitation

Little did I know that it does. I noticed that A is the kind of a character is her own world a lot and can these mood swings ( random moments of daydreaming ) so she can be unrealiable interms of calling n texting

Anywaz i messged A for us all to go out recently but she dint get bak and never did. Usually I ignore such girl n move to the next one. But since I'm interested in B I felt tht it's lame to end things like this.. So I'm nt really sure on what to do. Should I send a striaghtforward msg to A that I'm interested in B and want her number, or just ignore and move on

Cody Lyans's picture

Smarter way is to ask A for her facebook, then find B fb from that or ask for B's
Most girls fb is connected to their iphones these days so you can use it the same until it feels natural to get the number.

Best of luck with it man

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