Growing up, our parents cautioned us on talking to strangers. Parents warn us that such experiences never end well. While this mentality saved us from a lot of danger growing up, it doesn’t do us much justice as adults. How do we learn and expand our circles if we do not take the initiative to reach out to people we do not know? Furthermore, who are we to date, do business with, partner up, or employ if we do not take reach out to that stranger next to us in a bus? How many opportunities have we passed up simply because we hesitated to start a conversation?
Why should we talk to strangers?
1. Strangers are future networks.
Talking to a stranger allows you to express interests, achievements, and goals. At the same time, it gives us a chance to meet people with similar interests. The similarities provide a common ground to further professional and personal networks that could propel us to our next big thing.
Courtesy of Kotlin Academy
2. It makes us better listeners.
Talk to a stranger because it allows you an opportune moment to ask intelligent questions, and create an open mind for all sorts of answers. We often have less implicit bias towards a stranger than we do towards our friends. This helps us listen keenly without employing judgment. With enough repetition, talking to strangers could give us the listening skills we need to connect with familiar people.
Talking to a stranger gives us opportune moments to ask intelligent questions, and create an open mind for all sorts of answers.
3. It betters confidence.
A stranger offers us a one-person audience with undivided attention. While there’s the risk of being ignored, striking a conversation with a stranger is liberating. It helps us overcome the anxiety of meeting new people, giving us the confidence to talk to talk to the people we already know.
4. Strangers come with fresh ideas.
We are made of different experiences. Talking to strangers helps us hear other peoples’ success and failure stories. Sometimes, these stories give us ideas on how we could do things differently to achieve our goals and overcome hurdles in life.
Now that you’ve read this, I hope you’ll be more willing to talk to a stranger.