Continued from part 1.
Second Stage – Zeroing in on some commonality through testing, exploration, trial and error, and keen observation. In other words, you’ll be fishing around for something in common. When she’s talking, pay close attention and listen very carefully to what she says and how she says it.
Listen, watch, and note the body language. You’re looking for a common topic that you’ll both find interesting. If her emotion picks up or she talks a great deal about something, then you’ll know that she has an interest or is passionate about the topic.
Try disclosing something about yourself and look for any indication of interest. Watch to see which of your words cause her eyes to light up. Your discussion topic may not interest her but it may touch on topics that do.
For instance, you may be talking about whale watching in Alaska and notice that she doesn’t seem to care about whales or Alaska. But you do notice that her eyes lit up at the mention of the ocean cruise ship that you took to get there. This is your cue to forget the Alaskan whales and to talk about ocean cruise ship vacations in general.
You need to be flexible and allow the conversation to go in whatever direction her words and reactions take it. Remember, you’re fishing for common interests, so don’t fixate on one topic.
Third Stage – Making a connection at a deep level. If you make it this far, you’ve just earned her real phone number or (as the case may be) a second date with her. At this point you are going deeper into the interests and passions that you both want to talk about.
You will want to home in on values and beliefs. On your sense of who you are and her sense of who she is. What things matter the most? You can even ask her “What do you feel is most important about such and such?”
Your first conversation with a stranger is something that you should take charge of. It doesn’t have to be hit or miss. You shouldn’t leave it to chance or to the other person that something will take hold and develop.
Be careful to keep the conversation a 50-50 exchange. Always be aware of the give and take process of a conversation. Give too much and you’re dominating the conversation and the other person feels they can’t get a word in at all. You become a bore.
Take too much and the conversation becomes an interrogation. You’ll also come across as being secretive, as someone who doesn’t want to talk about himself.