Catch Nicole in Catching Faith 2 now on DVD and streaming, buy your copy here!

Catch Nicole in Catching Faith 2 now on DVD and streaming!

  • Films
  • About Nicole
  • Press

    How to Make Small Talk With Anybody

    With weddings, graduations, open houses and other social events coming this summer, it’s in every girl’s best interest to learn the art of conversation. This is easier said than done—especially for the introverts among us! But regardless of personality type, conversation can be difficult. Small talk—those shallow conversations we have with strangers and acquaintances—is everyone’s least favorite pastime. But it’s also essential to building relationships! The foundation we lay in small talk shows us which relationships have potential for depth and pursuit.

    Today we’ve broken down some small-talk ideas for different situations and people. As you read this, keep in mind that the heart of good manners and conversation is selflessness. When we are focused on ourselves, we become insecure and paranoid about what people think about us. But when we focus on others, we are naturally better at conversation and less concerned about how we’re perceived.


    Making small talk with… a college student

    It’s common at graduations to run into older siblings and friends of the graduate. Whether you’re talking to someone who is headed to school or currently attending, here are a few things you can ask to continue a conversation:

    “What school are you attending? How did you choose that university?”

    “What’s your major? What do you enjoy most about that program?”

    “Where are you headed in the fall?”

    “You’re attending community college? Me too! Are you going for anything in particular? Where will you transfer to?”

    As they answer, use that answer to build another question. Don’t be afraid of pauses! That doesn’t mean the conversation is failing. It means you’re both thinking about the next step.


    Making small talk with… a young mom

    As you get older, you’ll start having friends and acquaintances who get married and have children, perhaps before you do. This doesn’t mean you won’t have anything to talk about. Here are some questions you can ask a young mom or pregnant acquaintance:

    “How did you choose your baby’s name?”

    “What’s your favorite part about having a [baby/toddler/three-year-old]?”

    “What activities and events are great for kids in this area? I’m babysitting this summer!”


    Making small talk with… a guy you like

    Here’s where it gets tricky. When you run into that mutual friend at a wedding and your heart does flip-flops, how do you talk to him without looking ridiculous? First, remember that he’s human just like you. You have nothing to prove. Second, you can never go wrong with questions—in any situation. Just use what information you know about the person or the environment you’re in to build a question.

    “How do you know the [graduate/groom/bride/host]?”

    “How was your [significant event] last weekend?”

    “What scholarships are you applying for this summer?”


    Try not to use close-ended questions, e.g., “Did you have a good semester?” This applies to all people you talk to—when you use yes-or-no questions, you create a stopping point for the conversation. Unless they follow up with a question, you’re in for an awkward pause. Stick with open-ended questions (how, what, why, where). But also do NOT fear the awkward pause! It happens to everyone. The mind takes approximately 15 seconds to formulate a thought. Give people (and yourself) that time.


    How to gracefully leave a conversation

    Perhaps you’ve asked the questions and had a good conversation—but aren’t sure how to get out of it. Things are starting to peter out and you sense a big pause coming soon. This is when you say something like, “Well, it was great to see you and learn more about your summer plans! I need to [grab something to eat/check in with my boyfriend/talk to the bride] before she leaves. Have a good night!”

    It’s that simple. Take time to practice, give yourself grace and remember this is a lifelong skill! You will use the art of conversation no matter where you go.


    Phylicia Masonheimer
    Phylicia Masonheimer
    Phylicia Masonheimer is an author and speaker teaching women how to discern what is true, discuss the deep stuff, and accomplish God's will for their specific lives. She holds a B.S. in Religion from Liberty University, where she met her husband, Josh, and now lives in northern Michigan with her two daughters, Adeline and Geneva.


    Project Inspired

    Hey there, welcome to Project Inspired. We're here to inspire you to know that God created you for a wonderful purpose. We are a community of believers who love God. You have gifts and talents from God that are unique to you, and we're here to guide you along the way.

    Read On

    7 Ways God’s Love Is Like the Beach

    As you head to the beach during your summer break, looking for God in the midst, here are seven quick truths to draw from. 1....

    10 Scriptures to Remember on Independence Day!

    Happy 4th of July! Check out these 10 Bible verses to remember this Independence Day!

    10 Ways to Live Your Best Life This Summer

    It's finally here! Summer! Summer! Summer! It's the perfect time to catch up on sleep, connect with friends and take vacations. But with a...

    5 Ways to Rise Above Mommy Exhaustion

    We all know that mothering is definitely hard work sometimes, but it seems that everywhere you turn in our culture today, downright defeatist messages...

    What a Christian Girl Wants Her Guy to Know

    Wouldn’t it be nice if guys always did what we wished? If they weren’t so unpredictable or took the time to know what we...


    Stay connected with Project Inspired.