I see thousands of first conversations.  They happen when I am running speed dates or bringing clients out into the field or at networking events.

Every day, millions of people are having a first conversation. For many people, this is something that they struggle with.  Whether it’s some social anxiety, a natural inclination to introspectiveness or that you don’t know how best to showcase yourself, holding conversations can be difficult for some people.

Now add to the fact that it’s someone that you’re interested in and your synapses and hormones are caroming everywhere. It can be a nerve-wracking affair!

So here are some tips to help get that first conversation off to a roaring start!

Ask Positive Emotional Questions

In order to stand out and create some great chemistry, avoid the normal, logical, “dating interview” questions like, “Where are you from,” “What do you do,” and “Where did you go to school.”

We’ve all had to ask and answer those questions thousands of times.  Boring! Instead, learn to ask them emotionally.  This will make them remember happy moments, feel happy and intertwine you with their positive feelings.

Examples:

Conversation with a Man 1

_

Have Stories That Illustrate Your Best Qualities

There are masculine and feminine energies.  Everyone should have a mix of both. Some examples of masculine traits/energies are risk-taking, assertiveness, and competitiveness.  A few samples of feminine traits/energies are: nurturing, sociability and empathy.

You want to make sure that you showcase these characteristics as they are some of the things that men (unknowingly or not) are looking for.

I am NOT saying to downplay any aspect of you, just to bring these energies to the forefront.  And, like anything, don’t list, describe. Instead of saying you’re compassionate, tell a story where your compassion takes center stage.

Compliment Men Correctly

We all like compliments!  They make us feel good and show that we are notices and appreciated by others.  However, men and women are built differently so it would make sense that we should complement each other differently.

Many of the compliments that mean a lot to women are based around physicality and beauty. “That is a beautiful dress!”  “You’re looking lovely tonight!” And while, yes, it’s nice to know that you like the color of our shirt, it doesn’t affect us the same way.

As men, we like to feel that we are capable, virile and respected. Tell us that we are strong, congratulate us on how we handled a difficult situation, compliment our skill at the pool table.  These things will puff us up and make us feel needed and appreciated.

I know that you can carry that box up the stairs because you are a strong and capable woman. However, if you say, “I know you’re strong, would you mind carrying this for me?” you’ll immediately tap into what makes us men!

Conversation with a Man 2

Understand the Man’s Mind

On average, a woman speaks 30,000 words a day while men only use 10,000.  That doesn’t mean that we don’t communicate, it’s just that we don’t use words as much.

So when I have my male clients, I suggest they up their word game and when I coach women, I recommend that they truncate themselves a bit.  Going into excessive detail responding to, “How was your day,” is not what a man is looking for. Save the deep delving for your close girlfriends.

Instead, try and mirror how he talks. If he responds to a question with 5-7 sentences, keep your responses to 5-7 sentences. That way, you’ll keep his interest and leave him wanting more!

++++++++++

Hunt Ethridge is a Hoboken-based dating consultant and a fashion writer. Currently, he is the Senior Dating Coach at New York Dating Coach (www.newyorkdatingcoach.com).