5 Small Talk Tips for Dating



Written by: Alyssa McCarthy / Social Skills / February 6th, 2018

The hours of blog reading and profile updating have finally paid off. You’ve swiped right, matched, and are staring dreamily at the person across from you.

The conversation takes an awkward turn and within 10 minutes you’ve initiated the “oops-my-condo-is-flooding-and-I-need-to-leave-immediately” escape plan.  

After a series of fruitless dates, you’ve decided to meet someone naturally... Except you can’t seem to muster up the courage to approach that someone who has locked eyes with you from across the room.

Don't worry! We can help.

For a quick tune-up, take a look at this SLP’s guide to small talk.

Keep It Light

Don’t overshare. Small talk is an important tool for developing comfort between strangers and acquaintances without having the pressure of getting into all of the heavy hitters. Ease and comfort will allow for deeper discussions to flourish naturally.

Ask the right kinds of Questions

Question-asking is the surest way to take the heat off if you’re feeling the pressure to perform. Just remember to keep the questions open and non-invasive and be ready to jump back in!


Practice Good listening skills

Attentive listening means committing to keeping the phone out of sight and listening with more than just your ears! Eye contact shows interest and respect. While you’re looking, you might also pick up a few cues from their body language.

Reflect and Relate

Use reflective statements to show off your good listening skills. Reflective statements are also a great way to politely redirect the topic or to relate back to your own experiences while allowing the other person to feel acknowledged.


Don't Overthink it

Be true to yourself. Small talk is not intended to dazzle! It’s okay to not agree with everything that is being said and it’s okay to not share the same interests.

The dating world can be challenging, but keeping these tips in mind will hopefully remove some of the guess-work for you. 

The Well Said team provides support in social communication training to better develop your comfort and skill for a range of situations and contexts, including small talk for dating.

If you suspect you might benefit from some one-on-one support, let us know!