The dreaded silence…

I’m really into posting questions these days (it’s because it is exam time and I’m procrastinating!!!)
I’m kind of a introspective person and I always attempt to analyze why I feel or act the way I do.
Regarding shyness….I think one of the main reasons why I don’t easily engage myself in conversations (with new people) is because I get this feeling that if I did I would be invading, like, it is none of my business and I should not be butting in, especially if the group of people know each other well and I am new.

I think it’s common for shy people to not speak unless spoken to. Does anyone else feel this way?

ALSO…(I know others feel this way) I feel my mind draws a blank when I’m with people I’m not really comfortable with…when I’m with my family I have no problem talking constantly…going from topic to topic…but with others I feel frantic when we have finished one subject – I don’t know what else to talk about because it seems my brain has gone blank (even though I know there is some stuff floating in there) I hope the other person comes up with one…otherwise there is the dreaded silence…

Anyway…it’s good to get those things out. anyone want to comment on how they feel?


  1. I have felt similar to what you described many times. When I am with people I know (like family) I am much more animated and free with my emotions (positive and negative) but at work, I try to keep a social mask on and I end up feeling like the conversations are just superficial.

    One time I tried to act as if my co-workers were family members, like sisters, and this had some interesting effects. I think some of them were surprised I even spoke to them.

  2. Yes I often feel awkward with small talk. I have felt that small talk was superficial and useless but now I am learning the importance of small talk.

    Small talk breaks the ice; gives people time together without the awkward silences thereby creating the possibility of deeper communication; and gives people a chance to explore possible real topics.

    Similar to warming-up before exercise, small talk is warming-up before “really” talking.

    People who only do small talk are boring (and many shy people do not speak for fear of being one of these boring people).

    Small talk and conversation can be viewed as a game or challenge — can I really make contact with this person?

    If you try and do, great. If you try and don’t, great – no harm done and no need to judge yourself or worry about what the other person thinks of you because not everyone connects.

    If you don’t try, then you will never know if real contact could have been made.

    Take risks and try not to assume that the other person will think bad of you. It is actually worse to be silent than it is to take a risk and speak because the other person may automatically discount you.

    Small talk and conversation are important topics, anyone else with ideas?

  3. I agree that small talk is important if only to let people know you’re not so different from them. When I listen to some of the conversations of the more social people at work, they don’t sound clever all the time or say something profound. They speak about the same things we talk about when we feel free to speak (last night’s TV shows, movies, job, kids, love life or lack of it, news, etc.). It’s just hard for me to get started. It’s a real effort each day to break away from my work space and get up and try to get in on the conversation. I feel more comfortable staying planted in my seat, but then no risk, no gain…

Comments are closed.