The Importance Of Small Talk
We’ve all been in a situation where we beat our friend to the restaurant for lunch and find ourselves waiting at a table alone. We look around the room, notice all the patrons dining with someone, and suddenly become insecure that we’re solo.
Instead of striking up conversation with someone, we rush to grab our phones and stare at the screen until we are finally rescued by our late friend.
Long gone are the days while sitting on the subway during the morning or evening commute do we strike up conversation with the person sitting next to us. Perhaps it’s out of fear of disturbing someone who wants to be left alone, or maybe it’s due to actually having the person carry on a long conversation.
Overall, we are all a little afraid of small talk and more inclined to sit alone and keep to ourselves, buried eye-balls deep into our little devices.
Small talk, and the willingness to engage in it, is very important, especially when it comes to how we learn to socialize with other people.
Not only does small talk help teach us how to socially interact, it helps us learn how to socially interact in an environment that might not be familiar or comfortable.
When humans, who are naturally social animals, engage in small talk, the social interaction taking place actually provides a feeling of happiness.
Those who socially interact tend to increase their happiness and health, whereas others who shy away from social interactions claim to feel depressed and unhealthy, according to the Huffington Post.
And not only does small talk keep us feeling happy and heathy, it also teaches us how to stay calm in situations that we might not normally find ourselves in.
Instead of feeling anxious and nervous, learning how to strike up conversation with people you don’t know actually helps calm the nerves and provides a feeling of inclusion.
An unfamiliar event with people you don’t know suddenly becomes enjoyable because you are able to navigate and speak with people.
But perhaps the most important reason why everyone should learn to engage in small talk is because it teaches us how to listen and truly form relationships.
By asking a stranger about themselves and showing interest in who they are, it helps open doorways for new relationships, whether they are personal or business related. You learn how to connect with someone and identify with people you don’t know.
In a world where everyone is walking head-down staring at their phones, learning how to engage in and enjoy small talk is crucial in keeping social connections alive, and that means going beyond adding someone on Facebook.