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Discussion Starter #1
I have a hard time making conversation with people I don't know. I've come to believe that the root of this is that I'm not genuinely interested in speaking to people or learning more about them. I can't think of any other type that is more interested in talking to other people. So, I'd like to know how you think about conversations with strangers. What is your mindset? And how do you think someone can become more interested in other people?

Thanks!
 

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practice and exposure.

I don't care who you are, if you set an assignment for yourself where you talk to 300 strangers in a month, you will improve a lot (doesn't have to be 300 successful interactions, just 300 attempts). If you set an assignment where you talk to 3000 in 6 months- you will be almost a changed person completely by the end of it. On my gap year, I really focused in on it where I wanted to be someone who could walk intoany room and immediately own it (this was back when I was 18/19), I was backpacking in Australia and so every week or two I was walking into new social environments- after 8 months I was pretty good at it. I'm not that person anymore, but I could get it back with practice if I were motivated to.

I'm not necessarily saying to go do that, unless you are THAT motivated to get this down, but it's just showing that practice is what matters if you want to improve any aspect of social skill. If you are studying for example get a job as a checkout person and start with small talk with customers, or volunteer, etc. Though really going traveling and hostel hopping would be my ultimate advice.
 

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I have a hard time making conversation with people I don't know. I've come to believe that the root of this is that I'm not genuinely interested in speaking to people or learning more about them. I can't think of any other type that is more interested in talking to other people. So, I'd like to know how you think about conversations with strangers. What is your mindset? And how do you think someone can become more interested in other people?

Thanks!
I think this is a great start. Just wanting to ask someone a question and acknowledging that they might be a source of useful information and support just like you did here. I want to have this same conversation with my INTP daughter all the time! Lol. She's not open for it yet like you are, she's just 12 years old and I wonder what life was like for you at 12. My sister is also an INTP and we love her mind! and in general see her as our genius sibling. The other thing about people is that they can generate new interests for the INTP to play with. For instance, I'm a dietitian and somewhere along the way my sister started to research nutrition to the point that I feel like she and I can argue nutrition research as equals, but I don't know if she would have gotten into this on her own ( hard to say with a younger sibling). I am also her new music source and the source of new authors and shows. I feel like I bring her abilities out and help her see what she is capable of accomplishing in the fields she is interested in. It kills me that INTPs sometimes don't get into jobs to use all their capabilities-- this is true for her. I'm trying to encourage her to go on to be a medical researcher/ doctor. Instead she is a medical transcriptionist. Im hoping I can support my daughter in her interests enough that she gets to use all her talents. I sometimes think that without me telling her that my sister wouldn't even know her abilities are amazing and marketable. Same with my daughter. Stick with some ENFPs we hope to help out! I hope this helped a bit. Oh, you need to show us interest in us and our ramblings in order to get these ENFP "catalyst for good change" effects. :). So keep doing what you just did!
 
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1) Recognize the existence of your own profound stupidity.

2) Always assume you have something to learn from even the stupidest person in the world.

3) FOMO. You can learn things from people that you can never learn by experience (lack of time/opportunity) or research. You never know where and when such information can come in handy.
 

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Oh, goody, I like analysing things and coming up with perspectives! :mellow:

Sooo there are two things you want to tackle:
1. How to get interested in people you don't know
2. How to talk to people you don't know
(I think both flow into each other in a circle, actually, e.g. you don't talk to people because you don't find them interesting & you aren't interested in people because you aren't talking to them, so you don't see their value)

Why do we (ENFPs) think people are interesting? I think it's a Feeler thing. We Feelers need social context to figure out who we are, what we feel/experience, what we can do/what superpowers we have and what curious things are out there in the world. Thus, we seek social context. ENFPs find a lot of inspiration in our interactions with the world. We have such a strong drive to live, experience and learn, and although we will also read a lot and enjoy our alone time, we will always prefer to get our knowledge through our connections with other people. We will seek people from different backgrounds and with different opinions, because we want to experience and learn everything in order to understand the world and ourselves. After we gather enough information from that variety of people, we will focus on a few and want to build deep meaningful relationships with them. So you see, we need to go out there, mingle, give a lot of things a chance in order to figure out what we're deeply interested in and stick to it. What was until then more of a goal to experience horizontally becomes a goal to experience vertically and reach the ultimate depth/the final frontier/the core of everything in the universe and ourselves.

How do we (ENFPs) talk to people we don't know? We say hi and then something smart/weird/funny. :laughing: The approach is always different, depending on how we feel in a particular moment or what we picked up on about that person. We look for hooks that will allow us to put our foot in the door (say, we learn that person is into fantasy, so we'll talk fantasy as an ice-breaker before we move on to deeper topics where it's more fun). Or we randomly throw something at people (smart/weird/funny) and enjoy their reactions, then pick it up from there (as an example, take any thread that was started by an ENFP).

Besides undertaking small challenges yourself as it was suggested earlier (start small and build up, it's like any skill you want to master), as @Alesha said, stick to an ENFP and tag along on different types of adventures, because not only the ENFP will give you access to a lot of opportunities, but will also kick off conversations for you in a smooth way (it's truly our talent to create bridges between people, it's just fascinating and beautiful to watch) and you can observe us in practice to pick up on what makes it work for us, then apply it yourself if it makes sense to you. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all the answers everyone. Very helpful. To be clear, I'm not the typical INTP, in that I have done many things such as forcing myself to go out of my way to talk to strangers and increase my social acuity. The issue at this point isn't fear, but that my conversations many times die prematurely, because I'm still trying to figure out and adopt the mindset of how to be interested in people. It sounds horrible to say, but at least around where I live, I don't find many interesting people. (Although, when I do they are usually ENFPs, idk why). Anyway, thanks for the replies. I'm going to consider some of your viewpoints.
 
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