Why Talking To Strangers Can Be Good For You!

I have friends that will talk to just about anyone they meet, my husband is the same.

i’m shy. I grew up in California and was taught never to talk to strangers. When I moved to Washington state at 30 years old, it was a whole different story. People were friendly and they even talked to me in the grocery store. I found this odd but also heart warming.

I’d never experienced this before and enjoyed it. It’s one reason I moved to Washington state.

I’m still shy though.

I have a friend who says she’s actually trying NOT to talk to strangers, which made me laugh. She is one of the most personable people I’ve ever met and she’s really good at walking up to a stranger and having a conversation about ANYTHING. It’s so inspiring, I wish I could be like that.

Talking to strangers is a great thing, you make unexpected connections. People often feel like they connect more with strangers than with friends and spouses.

There are many reasons it’s easy to speak to strangers such as:

  • It’s easy to be honest with someone you’ll never see again.
  • We expect our spouses to understand us and read our minds, it’s easier with a stranger.
  • With a stranger we start from scratch and we start from the beginning.

In the Ted Talk “Why You Should Talk to Strangers”, Kio Stark mentions ways to connect with strangers, which I found very interesting.

She says she’s obsessed with talking to strangers and she hears a lot of stories. Talking to random people helps rupture her daily routine, rapidly builds empathy and offers the unique thrill of gleaning something real about someone she’s never met before and probably will never meet again.

To listen to more about why you should talk to strangers, watch the Ted Talk Below:

Here are four tips that Kio mentioned in her talk.

  1. Find someone who is making eye contact and start with a simple smile and see what happens.
  2. Find something you can both comment on, like art, or someone wearing funny clothes. See if it starts a conversation.
  3. Notice something about the person and give a compliment. Maybe say “you have nice shoes”.
  4. Next time you talk to a stranger and feel comfortable, tell them something true about yourself. She had an example about her Dad dying when she was young. Usually the other person will disclose something about themselves.

Kio Stark is the author of When Strangers Meet, the novel Follow Me Down and the independent learning handbook Don’t Go Back to School.

If you happen to meet a stranger and they turn into a friend, you may want to check out my post on “How To Have Better Conversations“!

Do YOU like talking to strangers and do you find it easy?  Please leave a comment!

TOPIC: Why Talking To Strangers Can Be Good For You!

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