Having a genuine curiosity about the people around you is the general attitude to have when getting to know someone. Everyone has a story to tell and when you get that story from them, they will feel connected to you. For some, being understood is one of the greatest feelings you can give them. These stories may come out naturally. If not, you can elicit these stories either by asking them or revealing your own personal stories first to entice them to share theirs as well. For example, if you want to know about their family, you can simply ask, “Do you have any siblings?” The other option is you can simply talk about your siblings first and then ask, “What about you? Any brothers or sisters?” Here are some topics you can reveal about yourself or ask her about.
What kind of style do you like on guys?
What was your best job?
What was your worst job?
What kind of work do you do?
Do you have a best friend?
Who is your favorite actor/actress/singer?
What kind of movies do you like?
What pushed your life in this direction?
Ever done drugs before?
Where do you like to shop?
How do you like to relax?
Are you romantic?
Have any pets?
Do you work out?
What is your drink?
What were you like as a child?
Have you ever been cow tipping?
What is your favorite movie?
Do you like coffee?
Where have your traveled to?
Where would you like to travel?
What was the best country you’ve been to?
Have you ever kissed a girl?
Do you have any tattoos/piercings?
Do you play video games?
Where do you like to club?
What is your passion?
What are you studying?
Where were you born?
What’s your nationality?
What languages do you speak?
Where did you grow up?
Do you have any brothers or sisters? What are they doing?
Are you single?
What languages do you speak?
What kind of food do you like?
What are you celebrating?
Are you superstitious?
Do you think men understand women?
Are you a trusting person?
What do you like to do when you are out with your friends?
What do you like to do on the weekends?
Are you artistic?
What do you like to do for fun?
Where do you like to hang out?
Do you like going to museums?
Are you into fashion?
Do you play any sports?
What do you like to do in your spare time?
Can you shoot pool?
What kind of music are you into?
What bands do you like?
Do you like dancing?
Can you cook?
Did you hear about (current event)?
What did you do this morning?
What would you do if you won a million dollars?
Would you ever want to be famous?
What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever done?
Are you close with your family?
What did you hate most about your ex?
What is your dream?
What makes you happy?
Are you a spiritual person?
What were you like as a child?
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
What was the happiest moment of your life?
What was your dream job as a child?
What are your friends like?
What do you look for in your friends?
What values do you hold most deeply?
What are the most important things in life?
What is the meaning of life?
Do you believe in soul mates?
Do you believe in true love?
Do you believe in romance?
What are you passionate about?
What did you dream of becoming when you were younger?
What was your most embarrassing experience?
What was your wildest experience?
Do you believe in ghosts?
What’s the wildest thing you’ve ever done?
What television character do you most relate to?
What is your favorite holiday?
What the most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?
Do you have any talent?
What’s the worst pick-up line you’ve heard?
Ever dated someone you met from a club?
Tell me about yourself?
The list of possible questions goes on indefinitely. You should never come to the point where you have nothing to talk about or have nothing to say. When you ask a question, you should be ready to answer it as well. Have something interesting to say or a good story ready when you ask a question. Delve deeper into questions rather than rattling off question after question like an interview. For example, if you are going to ask about her siblings, you can follow-up with what they are like, what they are doing, where are they, their relationships, and stories about you and your siblings.
i. Common Interests
As you get to know the other person, you will find out more about her along with her goals, hobbies, interests, history, and passion in life. These topics will come up naturally in conversation. If they don’t, you can simply bring up the topic. When one of these topics arises, you should delve deeper into these topics as they are something your target is passionate about, will likely be interested in talking about it, and we’ll give you a better picture about the type of person she is.
There are three basic responses for when she brings up her interests. You will be an agreement, feel neutral about the topic, or be in disagreement. Regardless about your feelings on the topic, you can continue the conversation successfully while still being honest about your feelings.
If you agree with her stance on a topic or share in her interests, you will bond and cultivate your connection with her as long as it comes off as sincere. This is first done by having a positive response. “Wow! I would have never imagined I would meet someone here who is an artist.” You should only agree if you truly do agree or truly share a common interest. If you start agreeing with everything, then it will come off as insincere. Furthermore, you won’t be able to back up your response with details, personal stories, or answer her questions about the topic. Sharing details you know about the topic and your personal stories will validate that you truly do share this common interest. “I’m really passionate about my art. I’ve been painting since I was eight. I’m actually having my art exhibited at a studio this weekend. I will send you an invite.”
If you are neutral about a topic, you can still continue an interesting conversation by asking the right questions, relating to her indirectly, and showing a genuine interest and curiosity about the topic. You may be neutral about a topic simply because you don’t know very much about it or have not been exposed to it in your past. “I really have no artistic ability, which is probably why I admire artists so much. What kind of art do you do?” You can relate to her indirectly by talking about stories in the past that relate to her interests or talking about someone in your social circle that is related to her interests. “I know nothing about art which is strange because I grew up in an artist family with my father being a musician and my mother and architect. Although, I did just see the Picasso exhibit….” If you know absolutely nothing about the topic, simply ask her questions about it that delve deeper than what she is telling you on the surface. “What inspired you to become an artist?”
If you are in complete disagreement on the topic, it is okay to say so. It will make the times that you are in agreement more sincere. Also, it is a hiatus for stimulating conversation. Though, don’t end up in an argument with your set. If it is headed in that direction, simply cut the thread and move on to a different topic. It is also possible to relate to her on a different level. “I have absolutely no artistic ability, but I really admire creative people. I feel like all successful people are where they are because of their creativity….”
ii. Personal Stories
After you have built enough comfort and trust, she will start to open up and may begin telling you personal stories about her life and experiences. Within these stories, pay attention to hints at the type of person she is, what her interests are, and tangential topics that you can discuss. You can relate to her stories in the same manner as discussed in the prior section. For example, you can tell similar stories that you have experienced in the past, relate to something she talks about in her stories, or simply ask questions about what she is talking about. If she begins talking about depressing or tragic situations, show empathy, cut the thread, and then change the topic. You want your interactions with her to be positive. You don’t want her to associate negative feelings with being around you.
You should share personal stories about your life as this will build comfort along with her trust in you as she gets to know you as a person. As mentioned before, telling personal stories can be related either directly or tangentially to the stories she shares with you. For example, if she talks about some hardship in her past, you can go ahead and share a hardship in your past. Be cautious not to mention any demonstrations of lower value or other stories that will reflect poorly on you. This includes stories of you being jealous, psychotic, violent, needy, emotionally unstable, mean, used, etc. The exception is if she reveals something about her that makes her vulnerable or in a position to be judged poorly. Then, it would be okay to relate to her and can be important for her to feel comfortable around you.
Your personal stories should reflect a wide variety of topics and give a broad picture about the type of person you are and the values you have. Your stories should demonstrate your value and be interesting. They should carry emotional ups and downs to capture your audience. Humor is a plus when appropriate.
Calibrate your stories to the situation and person you are talking to. When the mood is up, don’t bring down the crowd by telling a tragic story about your hamster dying when you were 6. On the other hand, if the mood is low you can empathize with your set with a personal story or choose to lighten up the mood with a happier topic. You can calibrate your stories by watching the reaction of your audience. For example, if you are talking to a librarian and she starts wincing or wandering off during your story about dropping ecstasy at the rave last weekend, you should cut that thread and change the topic to your trip to the local art museum yesterday. By having a wide variety of stories and life experiences to talk about, you should be able to relate to almost anyone out there from all walks of life.
Telling stories can reveal different aspects of your life. Topics of stories can include your family, friends, childhood memories, hopes, dreams, goals, hobbies, sports, recent events, travel, pets, school, your evolution, recent revelations you’ve had, funny things that have happened to you, events you have been to, interesting interactions you’ve had with people, or even what you had for breakfast. You don’t have to be a world traveler to tell interesting stories. Everyone has a story to tell. This includes the person you are talking to.