Improving Conversation skills for teenagers

18 Sep 2018

Communication skills are an important aspect of a teenager’s life whose academic and social success relies a great deal on effective communication.  It is the pathway towards healthy relationship building that transcends into a happy adult later on in life. Healthy communication turns an ordinary relationship into a spectacular one.

Healthy communication isn’t just about the smooth flow of conversation when the times are good. A person with good communication skills can discuss the most difficult things with ease and elegance. Here are a few tips to improve conversation skills in teenagers:

 

 

9 Tips to Improve your conversation skills

  1. Talk more: Whether you are an introvert or an ambivert who develops cold feet when meeting new people, the only way to harbor good communication skills is to talk more. Talk to your friends, teachers, parents, and siblings. Speaking up your mind with closed ones gives you confidence and the clarity to initiate conversations next time. It is like a practice match. The more you practice the better you get.

  2. Be informed: Obviously subject matters! You can’t hold conversations on nonexistent topics. Even if you don’t happen to be a bibliophile or hate the thought of reading newspapers, you can still keep yourself informed, on relevant topics, through social media. Talk about the complex current events with your friends or parents as it helps in organizing and sorting out thoughts. You’ll learn the art of dealing with disagreements while talking on difficult topics, without getting offended. An art worth treasuring these days!

  3. Attentive listening: Conversations are not all about speaking. You have to lend a patient ear and listen attentively to the other person to be an ace in effective communication. Ask questions whenever you deem necessary and show interest in listening to what is being said.

  4. Body Language: Sloppy body language can negatively impact other person’s perception about your interest in the conversation. Folded hands, lousy posture, yawning, being busy with the phone- all are a big no-no if you wish to have meaningful conversations. Be attentive and respectful to the person you are talking to.

  5. Find common ground in conversations: Small talk can be a little awkward initially but slowly you will learn how small talks help in finding a common ground in conversations. Common interests help you and the other person bond better, thereby making the situation comfortable for both of you.     

  6. Practice over texts or social media: You can practice effective communication through social media. Comment, chat or post about things that you like. Conversations over texts and social media aren’t as intimidating since you don't face to face with the other person.  Moreover, you get conversational fuel for future through photos and events posted by your friends. For example, the next time you meet a friend who attended a semester abroad you sure know what to talk about.


  7. Role Play: If the above tips do not help and you are still unsure about talking to other people, consider role-playing. Anticipating what would happen, in certain social situations, eases pressure and makes it comfortable for you to walk into them. If it is the big school fest or a college fair scaring you, practice what you would say in different situations through role play with friends, parents or even in front of the mirror. This helps you adjust the tone, temperament, and topics of conversation.

  8.    Seek help from professionals: It is never too late to ask for professional help. Behavior therapists are adept at dealing with socially awkward individuals who find it difficult to assimilate in social situations. Accepting a problem is one step ahead towards its solution.  

  9.    Never indulge in self-pity: Feeling sorry for yourself or hiding in your room to avoid social situations isn’t an escape route. It is going to drain away all the confidence you have. Instead of indulging in self-pity, take initiative and deal with the fear.  

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