Have you ever seen those old Bugs Bunny cartoons where one of the cartoon characters is trying to move a boulder and it just won't budge? No matter what they do - pry it with a crow bar or get ten of their friends to help - nothing makes a difference. It's a struggle.

Is that what your conversations feel like when you try and talk to others? I know mine used to feel this way, until I started using this technique to make conversations easier. It also made me feel better about my ability to make good conversation. Yes, using this technique helped me feel less self-conscious, at least when it came to talking to others.

How does feeling self-conscious cause you to struggle in your conversations?
Some common complaints I've heard are: "I just don't feel like I have anything worthwhile to say," or "I'm really boring when it comes to talking to someone one-on-one." Do any of these sound familiar?

You may think you have nothing interesting to say that the other person wants to hear. And that's ok. You don't have to have anything interesting say to have a good conversation. Huh? Let me explain.

People are really a self-interested bunch.
Dr. Phil McGraw once quoted his father as saying "You wouldn't worry so much about what others thought of you, if you knew how seldom they did." It's true. Think about how much you think about someone else's problems on a daily basis. How often do you think about world hunger, for instance? Unless your job involves dealing with world hunger on a daily basis, I'm guessing you don't think about it all that much. But what does this have to do about not struggling to have a good conversation? Why don't you have to have anything interesting to say to keep a conversation going?

It's because you can ask questions about what the other person is saying.
People are generally interested in their problems and their daily lives much more so than they're interested in others' problems. It's not selfish. It's just human nature. You can use this knowledge to your advantage so you don't have to feel like you have nothing to say. Just take something they said and ask a question about it.

Person A: "I just got back from Iowa visiting my Aunt Linda. It was a great vacation."
You: "What did you do out in Iowa?"

As you can see from the above snippet, you don't have to ask anything earth-shattering. Just ask a question that's related to what the other person is talking about. You draw them out more. They feel good because they feel like you're listening. You feel good because you're having a conversation without the struggle brought on by feeling self-conscious.

But what if you run out of questions?
It's called the end of the conversation. After you practice having smooth conversations using the art of asking questions, you should be prepared to gracefully exit the conversation. You both go on your merry way having felt better for talking to each other.

That's how you have a flowing conversation.
You don't have to struggle like a Bugs Bunny cartoon character trying to move a boulder. You just have to ask questions. It's the key to overcoming feeling self-conscious and having a good conversation.

Author's Bio: