You spot a guy at the bar who you’ve seen a couple of times but have only ever exchanged a word or two with. Or, maybe you have a new colleague who’s piqued your interest but you don’t know what to say to him. You could be missing out on some great romantic opportunities by not initiating conversation. Here’s how to talk to a guy you barely know with ease.
Why starting conversations with strangers is so intimidating
Sure, it’s a bit cliche and makes us want to roll our eyes, but smartphones and technology have definitely made us more awkward. Gone are the days when chatting to strangers was normal and welcome. These days, so much of our communication is done via our devices rather than face-to-face. That means when someone does start up a conversation, we think they must be weird and we shy away.
So, when you think you might like to talk to a guy you barely know (or don’t know at all), the idea of actually opening your mouth and introducing yourself can be terrifying. What if he thinks you’re a freak? What if you make a fool of yourself? It’s no wonder so many of us refrain from actually making these connections when the opportunity presents itself.
Well, it’s time for a change.
How to talk to a guy you barely know
- Let your curiosity shine. People like talking about themselves. Well, most do. Any guy would probably be happy to talk about the things he’s passionate about, especially to someone who’s interested. You can start and keep a conversation going simply by asking him questions. You don’t want it to seem like a job interview, of course. However, showing genuine curiosity and interest in him and his life will definitely go over well. It has the added bonus of shining a light on whether or not he’s as great as you think he is.
- Get creative rather than sticking to the standard. “What do you do?” and “Do you have any siblings?” might be important questions to know the answers to. However, they’re also a little boring. Get rid of the standard questions he’s probably been asked a million times. If you want to talk to a guy you barely know, think about what you really want to find out about him. How about asking about his favorite band or talking about what he thinks about a big event in the news? That has to be more exciting.
- Be your naturally charming self. Look, you’re amazing. You don’t really need to do anything special to prove that. You’re intelligent, funny, and interesting yourself. Letting those qualities shine by being authentically you will always go over well. And hey, if it doesn’t, he clearly wasn’t right for you anyway. Don’t put yourself in a box or change yourself to be someone you think a guy might like. That will always backfire and ultimately isn’t worth it anyway.
- Find the commonalities. What do the two of you have in common? Even people from completely different walks of life have things in common. For instance, do you love the same type of food? Did you both use to go to the same summer camp? Are you big readers? Finding something you share will give you way more to talk about and could form a bond between you.
- Pay him a genuine compliment or two. Flattery will get you everywhere. While you might be short on material when you’re trying to talk to a guy you barely know, surely there’s something about him you like. Tell him! Compliment on his smile or a funny joke you heard him tell. A little ego stroke will make him more amenable to conversation. That’s when he’ll realize how amazing you are.
- Do it more often — practice makes perfect. The reason chatting to someone new is so scary is that you never do it. The unknown is always frightening. That’s why doing it more often is a good idea. The more regularly you talk to a guy (or girl!) you barely know, in any context or situation, the easier it’ll get. You’ll be a pro in no time.
- Don’t worry so much. The stakes are relatively low here. You barely know the guy, so trying to talk to him isn’t a huge deal. If it doesn’t work out, you haven’t lost anything. If it does, that’s great. Try not to stress so much about something that matters so little in the grand scheme of things. Hell, you might not even like him that much!
- Don’t freak out if it doesn’t always work out. So, you pluck up the courage to introduce yourself to a guy and in return, you get rejected. He’s rude, uninterested, or both. That sucks, of course, but again, it’s not the end of the world. Don’t let this discourage you from talking to new people in the future. Not all situations end the same.
Why being brave is worth it
It goes without saying that if you’re looking for tips on how to talk to a guy you barely know, it’s because you like him. Or at least you think you might. That means you probably hope there’s potential for a relationship or at least a date there. And maybe there is! However, you won’t know unless you’re brave enough to approach him and start a conversation. Just think — you could look back a year from now with a long-term boyfriend and think, “Damn, I’m glad I took the chance.”
Even if the experience does end up being a total dud, that doesn’t mean it’s not worthwhile. Building up the confidence to approach people will pay dividends in your life as a whole. It can help you make professional connections or even make new friends, among other benefits. There’s literally no downside, so don’t be afraid to give it a go.