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How To Get People To Open Up

Assumption questions

You can use them to guide the conversation in a way that leads a person to open up.

How they work: you make assumptions about someone based on your observations and see if you are right or not.

How they help you: these questions show that you pay attention and care about what is being said. And if the assumption is wrong, they will react to it; you can use this reaction and start a new related conversation.

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How To Get People To Open Up

How To Get People To Open Up

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKO6MidWggs

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Key Ideas

Reducing your personal filter

The reason we are afraid to open up, to share some things is the fact that we are afraid of how others will react.

If you want to make someone be comfortable in your presence and feel safe to open up, consider reducing the filter you use for "judging" the world around you.

Why we use small talk

Because we are afraid of being judged, we keep out a lot of ideas and feelings.

So instead of talking about what we really want, we put on a sort of filter and spend the time discussing the weather, classes or sports, because all these are safe topics.

Share something weird

To show that someone is safe to open up with you, share something that is considered to be somehow weird. Just be careful to not seem too crazy.

Sharing something slightly odd about you will signal to the other person that you don't really care about what others think and also that you are not a judgemental person, so they'll feel safe in your presence.

Make sure your value is high enough

Before sharing something weird about yourself, make sure your value is high enough; this means you have proper hygiene, you have a decent amount of social proof,  you are in decent shape, you dress well and make eye contact.

The higher your value, the easier it is to get away with saying something weird.

Assumption questions

You can use them to guide the conversation in a way that leads a person to open up.

How they work: you make assumptions about someone based on your observations and see if you are right or not.

How they help you: these questions show that you pay attention and care about what is being said. And if the assumption is wrong, they will react to it; you can use this reaction and start a new related conversation.

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Trusting your instincts

Your first impressions are usually pretty accurate. But whether they are wrong or right, first impressions affect us in a big way and we are slow to change them.

You have to be willing to update them quite rapidly. 

Reading first impressions
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  • Funny people are smart: Effective humor production acts as an honest indicator of intelligence in humans.

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