Has anyone ever asked you a question that gave you pause, so you couldn’t just respond off-hand and you had to really think about your answer? Has anyone ever asked you a question that made you smile and confide in them? You were taken by surprise by the intimate nature of the question, but you answered it anyway because it was so unexpected? Or what about a question that really got you talking? You didn’t intend to go on and on, but there was just so much to explain, and you felt so strongly about what you had to say...
These types of questions are gold in dating situations. When you know how to ask the right questions, you know how to have a good conversation, and though it comes naturally to some, most of us could use some practice. We talked about asking open-ended questions briefly in our blog post Keep the Conversation Flowing, which is a good place to start. Today, we're going to dive a little deeper, and discuss three major types of questions that will help you get the most out of your conversations.
"Feeling" questions are a type of open-ended question where you ask someone specifically how they felt about something. These are excellent questions to ask because they get a person really involved in the conversation. We all experience strong emotions, and we all want to share how we feel. So, when you give someone the opportunity to tell you how they feel about something, they will usually open up — and feel closer to you as a result. Instead of asking someone, "So you really like to swim, hey?" Ask them, "How does swimming make you feel?" The former requires a simple yes or no, while the latter will elicit a longer, more considered response.
A spontaneous question serves to take your conversational partner by surprise — shake them up a little! If you feel a chat is getting stale, try throwing in a random question, something that is totally unrelated, and maybe even a little funny. Something like, "What's the weirdest thing you have in your home or that you've seen in someone else's home?" No doubt, the person will laugh, give it a think, and come back with an answer that will have you laughing along with them. This is also a good way to get to know someone better. People are more likely to answer spontaneous questions spontaneously — and therefore honestly — simply because you've shaken them up!
This type of question digs a little deeper. Instead of asking someone what they had for lunch today, call the whole concept of lunch into question! When you think a little more broadly, and you make connections between seemingly mundane activities and larger issues, you will make the other person think as well. But this line of questioning is best kept for select occasions — don't ask why everyone is programmed to have lunch at 12 every day and how that's a microcosm for the robotic way our society functions, if it's not a thought you've ever had before! When you do have a deeper thought, pay attention to it and store it away for a future discussion. You'll be amazed at what people have to say when provoked to do a little thinking.
Now that you have some questions up your sleeve, we hope you feel ready to give Livelinks Chatline a call and have a great chat! It's free for women to chat, and men get a phone chat free trial.