How to Talk to Anyone is a psychology-backed book that offers guidance on effective communication. Lowndes covers a wide range of communication types, broken down into verbal and nonverbal, across almost every possible context. Your approach should adapt depending on whom you are talking to and the specific context. Therefore, How to Talk to Anyone offers guidance on how you can become a master communicator. As a master communicator, you can connect with others irrespective of the environment.
About Leil Lowndes
Leil Lowndes is an internationally recognized communications expert. She has conducted communication seminars for major US corporations, foreign governments, and the US Peace Corps. Lowndes has appeared on hundreds of television and radio programs.
Part 1 – How to Intrigue Everyone Without Saying a Word
80% of first impressions is the way you look and move. In fact, studies suggest that emotional reactions occur in our brains before we even have time to register a reaction to somebody. Therefore, try to utilize Leil Lowndes’ tips to intrigue everyone through your first impressions.
The Flooding Smile
“Don’t flash an immediate smile when you greet someone, as though anyone who walked into your line of sight would be the beneficiary. Instead, look at the other person’s face for a second. Pause. Soak in their persona. Then let a big, warm, responsive smile flood over your face and overflow into your eyes. It will engulf the recipient like a warm wave. The split-second delay convinces people your flooding smile is genuine and only for them.”– Leil Lowndes
Lowndes advises against quick smiles. Instead, if you interact with somebody, you should start by looking at their face for a second and pausing. This pause will let you soak in their persona and then let out a big warm smile that floods across your face. Then, allow this flood to overflow into smiling with your eyes. While engaging with the flooding smile, you should also try to maintain eye contact. Others will respect you more if you maintain strong eye contact. Specifically, this ability is associated with intelligence and abstract thinking.
Lowndes’ second technique builds on the importance of maintaining eye contact. She describes how you should adopt sticky eyes. This means you should not break eye contact even after they have finished speaking. Once you have decided to break eye contact, you should do so slowly and reluctantly. Lowndes believes this approach will send a message to others to comprehend their conversation and respect them as an individual.
When you are seeking romance, you should utilize what Lowndes describes as epoxy eyes. If you are romantically interested in someone, you maintain deep eye contact with them even when they are not the person talking. If they are interested in you, keeping eye contact while they are a listener can be an effective aphrodisiac.
Hang By Your Teeth
Lowndes suggests you pretend you are hanging by your teeth on a trapeze bar to improve your posture.
The Big Baby Pivot
Lowndes recommends utilizing the big baby pivot when you meet a new acquaintance. Once you have been introduced, produce a warm smile, total body turn, and offer them undivided attention.
Hello Old Friend
One of the best approaches when reacting to meeting a new acquaintance is pretending they are an old friend.
Limit the Fidget
You should always avoid fidgeting, wiggling, twitching, squirming, or scratching when engaging with a meaningful conversation. On top of this, keep your hands away from your face.
Hans Horse Sense
When talking, you should allow yourself to express feelings and emotions. However, while doing this, you should also be focusing on your listener’s reactions. After identifying your listener’s reactions, you should respond accordingly.
Watch the Scene Before You Make the Scene
Visualizing a better version of yourself will allow you to successfully engage with people in real life.
Part Two – How to Know What to Say After You Say Hi
“Take consolation from the fact that the brighter the individual, the more he or she detests small talk.”– Leil Lowndes
Make a Mood Match
Try not to worry too much about what you are saying, but attempt to match the mood of the audience. The easiest broad approach to take is simply ensuring your words will put people at ease while also making you sound passionate.
Prosaic With Passion
As long as your words are putting the audience at ease, you can focus more on the tone of what you are saying. 80% of your communication has nothing to do with your choice of words.
Always Wear a WhatsIt
Lowndes suggests always wearing or carrying something slightly unusual. Possessing these objects will immediately draw other people’s attention towards you. On the flip side, try to make small talk by commenting on other people’s attire.
Who Is That?
Asking people you know to make introductions with other people can immediately provide an icebreaker.
Eavesdropping in group contexts is not rude. Instead, it shows curiosity. Therefore, do not be scared to eavesdrop on other conversations and say something like ‘excuse me, I couldn’t help but overhear…’
Never the Naked City
“Do humanity and yourself a favor. Never, ever, give simply a one-sentence response to the question, “Where are you from?” Give the asker some fuel for his tank, some fodder for his trough.”– Leil Lowndes
If somebody asks you where you are from, you should always avoid giving them a one-word answer. Use this as an opportunity to describe interesting parts of your area and your life.
Never the Naked Job
As with the last tip, you should always avoid one-word answers when somebody asks what you do for work. Instead, embellish your answer with fascinating facts about your role, company, or job history.
Never the Naked Introduction
When introducing people, you should always offer an exciting point for the conversation to flow from. Offering an unbaited hook when starting a conversation will only lead to awkwardness.
Be a Good Word Detective
A word detective can identify their conversation partner’s preferred topic by listening to every word said.
The Swiveling Spotlight
You will become more appealing in others’ minds if you learn how to keep the spotlight shining on them.
Like a parrot, simply repeat the last few words your conversation partner says.
People love telling interesting stories, so be the person who encourages others to tell their amusing stories to others.
Accentuate the Positive
Some people offer the advice of always being yourself. However, Lowndes states you should always emphasize your positives and leave your skeletons in the closet.
The Latest News
Try to keep up to date with the latest news so that you can star during the conversation.
Part 3 – How to Talk Like a VIP
Avoid Asking What Somebody Does
Lowndes believes you should never be asking the question, ‘What do you do?’ Instead, you should be asking others how they spend most of their time.
The Nutshell Resume
Try to avoid using the same stories about your personal life across conversations. Instead, build up a bank of true stories that roll off your tongue.
Your Personal Thesaurus
Avoid using the same words over and over. Having a broad vocabulary is impressive, and you can even choose to replace certain words with other more appealing words.
Kill the Quick ‘Me Too’
A common mistake made is immediately agreeing with another person. Instead of jumping in with ‘me too,’ you should wait and listen. In doing so, the other person will be far more moved if you wait to agree.
Wherever possible, start sentences with the word ‘you.’ Starting conversations with this word will immediately grab your listeners’ attention.
The Exclusive Smile
If you are meeting a group of people, you should greet each person with a distinct smile rather than smiling at a group.
Call a Spade a Spade
Try to avoid hiding behind euphemisms and merely tell it how it is.
Trash the Teasing
You should never make a joke at someone else’s expense. That person will hold a grudge against you, and others will be worried you will turn on them next.
It’s the Receiver’s Ball
You should always consider the receiver of your news before throwing it out there. Then, ensure you deliver any news with appropriate emotions.
The Broken Record
Whenever someone persists in questioning you on an unwelcome subject, simply repeat your original response. Use precisely the same words and the same tone of voice.
Big Shots Don’t Slobber Over Celebrities
You should not complement the entirety of somebody’s work and instead choose a recent accomplishment.
Never the Naked Thank You
You should never offer a standalone thank you. Instead, you must describe what you are thankful for.
Part 4 – How to Be an Insider in Any Crowd
Once a month, scramble your life. Do something you’d never dream of doing. Scramble therapy is scrambling up your life and participating in an activity you’d never think of indulging in.
Learn a Little ‘Jobletygook’
Lowndes describes gobbledygook as the language of other professions. Learn the minimal amount of information about a wide range of topics so you can sound like an insider. The most effective way of doing this is finding an insider fried to teach you some lingo.
Bearing Their Hot Button
As well as learning some of the language within a profession, you must also identify the hot issues within a field. Every industry has burning concerns that only specialist people will know about. Learn these hot issues, and you become infinitely more interesting.
Read Their Rags
Read magazines pertaining to the industry you will be encountering to learn insider news.
Part 5 – Instant Rapport
Be a Copy Class
Try to copy the movement styles of people you are engaging with. Doing so will make them feel more comfortable and receptive. Match your personality to your product.
Echoing is a simple and powerful linguistic technique. Hearing their words come out of your mouth creates subliminal rapport.
Anatomically Correct Empathizers
Use visual, auditory, or kinesthetic empathizers depending on your conversation partners.
The Premature We
Lowndes believes you can create a sensation of intimacy with someone even moments after having met them. The most effective way of doing this is skipping conversation levels 1 and 2 and going straight to the more intimate conversations.
If you want to make a stranger less of a stranger, try to identify a remarkable moment you shared during your first encounter.
Part 6 – How to Differentiate the Power of Praise From the Folly of Flattery
Offer praise to people when they are not even within a conversation. If they find out you have been complimenting them behind their back, then this means a lot more than flattery to someone’s face.
Carrier Pigeon Kudos
Become somebody who carries good news. Therefore, if somebody compliments another person, you should try to be the person who lets the complimented person know.
Throw a few comments into your conversation that presupposes something positive about the person you’re talking with.
Try to become a stealthy praiser. Do not make all your compliments obvious. Instead, hide them in the middle of sentences. These types of praise are often perceived as more genuine.
The alternative to accidental adulation is the killer compliment. Use these sparingly as they can be intense. Identify one specific quality and, at the end of a conversation, look them in the eye, say their name, and deliver the compliment. The author also provides several killer compliment rules:
- Deliver it in private.
- Make your killer compliment credible.
- Confer only one killer compliment per 6 months.
To keep your loved ones on side, you should utilize minor verbal strokes. These strokes will help them better understand they are appreciated.
Let compliments boomerang straight back to the giver. You do not necessarily have to give a big compliment, but you can say something like ‘that is very kind of you.’
If you want to come across as engaging on the phone, you must turn your gestures into sounds and words.
People will always perk up when they hear their name. Therefore, use their name as often as you can to keep their attention.
Salute the Spouse or Secretary
Whenever calling someone, always identify and greet the person who answers. Whenever calling more than once, try to make friends with them.
Part 8 – How to Work a Party Like a Politician Works a Room
Munching or Mingling
It is impossible to be fully engaged with a conversation if you are eating at the same time. Similarly, your audience will pay less attention to you if you distract them by eating.
Rubberneck the Room
Survey the situation at gatherings so you can better understand how to create positive conversations.
Be the Chooser, Not the Choosee
Make every social interaction a rehearsal for the moment that you meet people who could potentially change your life.
Come Hither Hands
You can arrange your body in a way that is open, focusing on your arms and hands.
Check every tiny detail of your conversation partner’s life. Then, refer to these details in your conversation. This should create a powerful sense of intimacy.
The Business Card Dossier
To ensure you remember details about new acquaintances, you should write down notes to remind yourself of the details you learned.
Plan your pitch and pace according to the other person’s body signals.
Lend a Helping Tongue
Whenever someone’s story is aborted, bring attention back to the story after the interruption.
Tit For Tat
When you do someone a favor, wait a suitable amount of time before asking for them to pay.
Dinner Is for Dining
You should never talk about unpleasant topics or tough business concepts while eating.
Comment below and let others know what you have learned or if you have any other thoughts.
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