22 Nov

Holiday Small Talk: 12 Questions You Can Ask At The Dinner Table To Help You Avoid Talking Weather & Politics

Holiday Small Talk: 12 Questions You Can Ask At The Dinner Table To Help You Avoid Talking Weather & Politics

Do you ever find yourself at a holiday gathering saying the same thing over and over? “ Hi, who are you?” “Oh, we are related?” “What do you do?” You talk weather, current events, and go home. You don’t remember who you met, what you talked about or if any of it even mattered?

I believe holidays don’t have to be that way. I also believe your presence is the best present you can give at the holidays. In order for this to happen though you have to wake up. You have to become conscious that you want the holidays to be different. You have to take responsibility and shift the conversations you are having.

This does not have to be hard or time consuming. You can do this while sitting at the stoplight while holiday shopping.

Do these two things. First, choose your presence or your attitude. Second have a few questions or ideas that you want to know about the people in the room. Pick topics that are interesting and universal.

Choose Your Presence:

I think this year it is critical that you pick the presence you want to be before you jump in the car for that family or work gathering. Will you be grumpy, tired, fun, happy, or joyful? You don’t have to pretend to be something you are not. You do need to be authentic and know you will get the results of your choice.

Have Pre-prepared Small Talk Questions:

Here are 12 that I’ve prepared for you. Cause well, I secretly hate small talk too.

  • What would you say is the funnies thing that happened to you this year?
  • Seems tomorrow is “black Friday” what is the one item you might be willing to get up early on black Friday to buy?
  • What type of car do you drive? Where is the most memorable place you have gone in it?
  • Do you have any pets? What do you love about your pet?
  • Lovely <insert item here ring, bracelet, t-shirt> you are wearing. Tell me about it. What does it mean to you?
  • Do you send holiday cards? Why or why not? (It’s not about judgment it’s about hearing the story.)
  • What is one goal you have for 2017?
  • What’s your favorite food? Tell me more about the first time you ate it.
  • What was the best thing that happened to you this year?
  • If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
  • What’s your favorite color? Why?
  • If you won the lottery what are the first 3 things you would do with the winnings?

(Warning you may want to answer these questions because a good conversationalist with put these ones back on ya.)

Holidays and the perception of all the obligations that go with them are not easy for everyone. Use these questions simply as guides to avoid the dreaded political talk and create a connection in a new way.  This holiday especially don’t be afraid to say – I do not talk politics.

It’s not lost on my team or me, the humans are becoming less human and the computers are becoming more so. This holiday make the choice to be happy.   Choose to have an enlightening conversation with that friend or family member at the dinner table. It really is easy to make a simply authentic human connection. Who know it just may be the start of a new holiday memory or tradition.

For more on this topic see my Open Office Live Video

 

[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://hollyduckworth.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/4203_2.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]Holly Duckworth, CAE, CMP is an executive coach, keynote speaker, and author. As your Spirit Strategist she is a trailblazing business consultant and thought leader. Holly works with CEO’s and executive leaders to reinvent with intent. Using spiritual tools, visioning, meditation, affirmations and Universal Truth she helps leaders transform their personal lives and companies from competition to collaboration. [/author_info] [/author]

 

A nationally recognized author, speaker and coach for conscious leadership and motivation. Holly is a regular columnist for MeetingsNet/IdeaExchange, Association Trends and writes regularly on the future of leadership for Science of Mind magazine. Join Holly in the conversation. Listen/watch her weekly show “Presence: How to Live & Lead Consciously.” Available on iTunes. She lives in Denver, Colorado. Learn more at www.hollyduckworth.com, visit her on LinkedIn & follow her on twitter at @hduckworth.

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