With the holidays, and any other day really, comes parties and occasions and meetings and any number of social situations in which you have to make small talk with people you don’t know. Maybe you don’t have anything in common, or you are feeling shy, or you just don’t know what to say; awkward silences will kill you. Here are a few great ways to break the ice this holiday season.
Conversation Starters for a Man
If you’re talking to a man and have no idea what to say, say something about whatever sport is currently on. If it’s football season, ask how his team is doing. If he doesn’t like football, he’ll tell you he likes baseball or basketball or men’s swimming – and now you REALLY know a lot about this guy – and you’ll be talking sports in no time at all. This will lead to conversations about jobs and spouses and kids and travel and anything else.
An Older Person
Don’t just stick to topics like the weather. Instead, compliment her vintage Dior dress or her gorgeous shoes. Ask her how long she’s had that Louis Vuitton handbag, because we all know that if the handles have already oxidized, she could have had it anywhere from five to 50 years. These conversation starters are a great way to break the ice and get to know someone from another generation.
This is a tricky one, because you don’t want to assume that this person is a total raging alcoholic by talking about cocktails or a beach bum and start talking about the merits of Cancun and Miami. You want to broach this conversation by complimenting her on something she’s wearing. You love her necklace or her shoes. Her blouse is fabulous. This is something safe, because it can lead to a conversation that has nothing to do with shoes or handbags. “I love your shoes,” can turn into, “Oh, thanks! I got these at this fabulous little village in Italy…” and you might be friends forever.