5 Tips To Start a Conversation Without Getting Shot Down

So that cute girl across the coffee shop is reading your favorite book. Her angsty, Aubrey Plaza-like hipster vibe is just too compelling for you not to talk to her.

But she seems so engrossed in her reading that you’re intimidated as hell by the force field she’s put up. Then your inner monologue kicks in:

“Is she gonna blow me off?”

“Call me an a-hole?”

“Laugh in my face for trying to talk to her?”

“How do I break past her bitch shields and let her know what an awesome guy I am?”

We’ve all been down that road, and it doesn’t always end well.

However, it’s totally real to get a girl to like you with the sheer power of your conversational skills.

Here are 5 Tips you can put to use right away for starting a conversation – and keeping it going:

#1: Understand The ‘Ugly Truth’ About Talking to Women

Guys who get chewed up and spit out are oblivious to the factors involved with meeting and talking to women.

First off, it’s not your fault for being scared – because your brain is playing tricks on you. In the early years of human civilization, approaching a woman could literally mean death if she happens to be in alliance with the local Alpha Male. Walking up to Ms. Bookworm isn’t going to get you killed, but the caveman part of your brain is “protecting” you from the worst-case scenario. In this case, it’s rejection and ridicule.

You also need to internalize another little-known truth before even walking up to women. Even though you selected her because of her looks, she can’t know that (not right away at least).

Fact is, women can “smell” this a mile away. Once she picks up on your needy vibe, it’s game over.

I understand how that can screw with your head. You might say, “Well, I’m trying to start a conversation with a total stranger – so yeah, she probably knows I’m attracted to her!” I get that. As guys, it’s in our DNA to seek out a mate we find the most attractive. But remember, this is a game. And playing your cards right means downplaying that you’re into her.


Being too obvious INSTANTLY puts you at a disadvantage. If she gets the impression that you want something from her, it tells her you’re a guy with low social value. What’s more, she’ll be turned off by the expectation you’ve placed on her by having an agenda.

I’ve talked to my female friends about this. One of them told me, “Women get harassed on the street, subway and a lot of other public places. A LOT. I’d turn down a guy if I get a whiff of predatory behavior… which I’ve done more times than I care to count.”

Another friend told me, “Maybe not all guys are perverts, but I’ve had my share of ‘nice’ guys who expect me to fall for them just for being nice…I end up tuning them out for being boring. ‘Nice guys’ end up turning out to be a more subtle form of ‘jerk.’”

So it boils down to this: if we have an imaginary fear of getting hurt, women have to protect themselves from real-life creeps.

#2: Slip Past Her Creep Radar

That means she shouldn’t see you coming. But that’s not the same as sneaking up on her, though.

(We’ve just established women don’t like stalker-ish behavior, remember?)

The most casual way to introduce yourself then, is by NOT HOVERING. Don’t pace around, debating you should or shouldn’t make your move. Hesitation makes you look nervous and weak (read: low value), as if you’re doing something ‘wrong.’ By the time you go in, you’ve already ruined it because you’ve given away your intentions (and your leverage in the game).

Before you get to that point, you need to decide on how to approach her. Have a good idea of what to say so it’ll look casual when you do get in her field of vision.

Here are some basic guidelines:

– Act like you’re just about to leave. The sense of urgency means she won’t have to wonder when you’ll get lost.

– Adopt a posture that looks like you’re headed for the door. Then say something like, “Hey, I was heading out, but I just noticed…” or “Sorry to bug you, but…” When you’re aware that you’re snapping her out of herpersonal bubble, it will make her less likely to shut you down.

– If that’s not possible, make it seem you were walking by when you just happened to see her. Again, avoid the appearance of premeditation.

– Maybe you’re walking next to her along a busy street. Stay in the same direction, move a few paces ahead of her, then look behind and start talking. Let her catch up to you and continue the conversation.

– Refer to the first guideline if she’s sitting (like Ms. Bookworm). But don’tlook like a schmuck by standing there for too long. While you’re talking, get a nearby chair so you don’t break up the flow.

– Staying upbeat is key – you’ll want to be enthusiastic enough to keep her engaged, but not so much that you’ll look nervous and scare her off. The secret is balance.


#3: “That’s great, but what the hell do I say?”

As long as she wants you to stay, it doesn’t really matter.  (shhh!)

A good place to start is to watch how stand-up comedians perform. When guys like Hannibal Buress, Russell Peters or Chris Rock work a crowd, the same stories and routines tend to come up. Even if we’ve heard them, it doesn’t matter.

In the same way, think of a funny or interesting story about something that happened to you or someone you know. Don’t come off like you’re trying too hard to look cool – imply that in the story instead. Just bear in mind that is only meant to get things started – like a pilot flame, if you will. To keep the spark going, you’ll eventually have to improvise by introducing other topics.

If you’re worried about going blank, read up on current events, celebrity news and other trending topics. Or maybe you’re into a certain type (e.g. geeky, artistic, sporty, etc.) so do a little homework and have something relevant to talk about.

Imagine how mind-blowing it would be for a girl to meet someone who actually cares about her personality instead of hearing “Wow, you’re so beautiful” for the billionth time.

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