Polite Conversation Rules
1. Look at the speaker. Show interest! Make eye contact, nod, & smile.
2. Do not interrupt.
3. Keep your story interesting, but brief. Give others a chance to speak. Do not do ALL of the talking. Ask questions to find out what you have in common. (What do you think? Do you know what I mean?)
4. Avoid unnecessary details. Don’t sidetrack. For example, if the time of day that something happened isn’t important, don’t waste time getting it right.
5. Don’t overuse the word “I”. (I think…. I can do that! I know…. I did that…)
6. Don’t always be the hero of your story. Even though most stories do have a hero, work to build others up as well as yourself.
7. Don’t speak too loudly. Louder does not equal better or smarter.
8. Do not exaggerate. Not everything is “the best,” “the worst,” or “the funniest.” Also, if you constantly tell “tall tales”, others will begin to be suspicious and you’ll become known as dishonest or untrustworthy.
9. Do not contradict (correct) others, especially if it’s not important. You are inserting unnecessary details into the person’s story.
10. Cultivate tact. Don’t be untruthful, but also don’t be hurtful. Do not tell someone that he or she looks sick, sad, or tired. This will only make the person uncomfortable.
Remember silence is an option. “Say the right thing, or say nothing.”
“I agree with John….”
“Miranda made a good point….”
“I have a different view because….”