Toolbox: Biggest Myth With Small Talk & 3 Mistakes to Avoid

Toolbox: Biggest Myth With Small Talk & 3 Mistakes to Avoid

In today’s episode, we cover the science of small talk with AJ and Johnny. 


Small talk can feel like a chore these days, but why is it important that we make small talk with people throughout the day, how do we make it fun and engaging, and why is it detrimental to our relationships and community to avoid or ignore small talk?


What to Listen For


The science of small talk and acknowledging others - 0:00 


What are the benefits to making small talk and why does avoiding small talk erode the strength of relationships and community?

Why do people go to extreme lengths to have their existence acknowledged?

Why is it detrimental to think of small talk as useless or a waste of time?



Why is small talk stopping you from being successful - 8:22 


Why do people think small talk is boring and how is that mindset hindering them?

In what way does small talk satisfy one of our most basic needs as humans?

How can we use small talk as a jumping off point for engaging conversations?

What pitfall do we need to avoid when making small talk?



Why is it so important for us to make small talk - 16:00


Does small talk require you to be positive and bubbly?

What is small talk really about?

What can you do to be more likeable?

What negative signals are you conveying when you ignore the attempts others make at small talk?

What one word can you add to make your small talk more fun and conversational?


Small talk is one of our more important tools in initiating engaging conversations. You can make it fun, but at times it can be awkward. That discomfort at the thought of awkward small talk leads people to opt out altogether in the age of smartphone proliferation. It feels much safer to stare at your phone than strike up a conversation with someone you don’t know. Unfortunately, this is leading to a lack of any small talk, even with friends and family. Over time, this leads to a total disconnect within communities as neighbors don’t talk to each other, friends sit on their phones when they’re out to dinner, and families resort to texting rather than calling each other.


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Resources from this Episode

Is Efficiency Overrated?: Minimal Social Interactions Lead to Belonging and Positive Affect


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