ART OF CONVERSATIONS
Conversation is a dialogue,
an exchange of ideas between two or more people
reflecting their thoughts values, ideas and even
upbringing. The art of conversing well is not a
gift one is born with, but is a skill which is
"Conversations can be
face to face or distant (through the Telephone,
and now over the Internet); and should be
pleasant, witty and intelligent, without being
artificial, hurting or conceited."
Starting a Conversation
Be armed with a wide base of knowledge
on various aspects of life. Don't narrow
your vision and don't gain knowledge only
about things which interest you. Living in a
cosmopolitan society, in order to be able to
carry on an intelligent conversation with
different people from different backgrounds, one
has to have knowledge of various fields. The
reading list should include newspapers and
magazines related to current affairs in
politics, business, art, music, sports, film,
A polite way of starting a
conversation when meeting a person, perhaps
for the first time would be a simple salutation:
"Hi, How are you?". If this is
directed to us, it may be answered with a brief
"Good or 'very well'; and you?"
It may happen that you are not very
familiar with the people present at a
gathering or a social party and you feel lost.
At such times, confidently walk up to the person
you would like to make friends with, and
introduce yourself for instance "Hi! I am
Peter. Sandy (the host) and I are college
Some Do's and Don'ts
- DO start a conversation with a topic which
interests everyone present at that point.
- DO be a good listener. Show keen
interest in the other person's
conversation and his viewpoint. Have a pleasant
and attentive expression on your face while
listening to others and don't get
engrossed in private thoughts.
- DO develop the art of narrating a joke
or a funny story with telling effect. Practice
telling the joke or story with family members
first for their reaction until you are confident
enough of narrating it to others.
- DO talk according to the time and
place. Avoid interrupting or cracking a joke
in the midst of a serious conversation and if
you do so, quickly apologize.
- DO try and find out, in advance, about the
background of the person whom you are going
to meet; and brush up on topics that would
interest him/ her. Make an effort to get some
information about the family, for instance
- whether the spouse is working or a
housewife, age and whereabouts of the children
- DON'T give a detailed health bulletin
when generally asked, "How are
you?", Only in the case of a recent
operation, mishap or illness, the other person
is interested in knowing about some details.
- DON'T talk about personalities unknown
to others in the group or indulge in name
dropping for showing off.
- DON'T impose your point of view on the
other person and don't ridicule others
point of view or contradict very strongly.
- DON'T talk at length about your family
members unless the other person is well
acquainted with them. Parents commit the mistake
of talking at length about their children.
- DON'T give unnecessary details. A good
conversation is witty and brief.
- DON'T crack vulgar, crass or cruel
jokes; they show signs of ill-breeding.
Jokes, which are good in taste, should be