How To Keep A Conversation Going With A Girl (For Guys)

Making conversation can be challenging, and it’s even worse if you’re talking to an attractive girl. You might be worried about making mistakes, looking bad, or making her feel uncomfortable. Our culture also often expects guys to make the first move and to carry the conversation. That’s a lot of pressure.

In this article, we’re going to give you the inside scoop on how to keep a conversation going and how to come across as interesting and fun when talking to girls, especially ones you’re interested in.

Sections

  1. How to keep a conversation going with a girl
  2. How to keep a conversation going with a girl you like over text
  3. Tips the girl you like wishes you knew
  4. Common questions

How to keep a conversation going with a girl

Lots of guys struggle to talk to girls, even though they can talk to their guy friends for hours. It can feel like you have nothing to say.

Here are the best tips for finding conversation topics when talking to a girl and some ways to keep the conversation flowing.

1. Follow her conversational breadcrumbs

We drop potential topics into our conversations, intentionally and unintentionally. Listening carefully and asking about things she mentions can help you have a conversation she enjoys.

Conversational hints are often mistaken for throwaway comments.[1] For example, if you’re talking about a movie and she mentions that one of the actors “reminds me of my brother,” try asking about her family.

There are also cues in her tone of voice or expression. If you ask her whether she smokes, she might say, “No. I’ve managed to avoid that vice.” If she emphasizes the word “that” and smiles, she might be flirting. You can try asking which vices she hasn’t avoided in a flirty way.

2. Keep your conversation topical

It’s good to have some conversation topics prepared, but try to keep them back until they’re needed. Talking about things that become relevant at the time makes you seem more confident and natural.

If you see a cute dog walk by, it’s natural to point it out and talk about your dog or pets in general. This will feel more relaxed than asking about pets without any context.

This is probably what you do with friends anyway. Try remembering this technique when talking to a girl you like.

3. Ask open questions

Asking questions shows that you’re interested in talking with a girl, but some questions are better than others. Open questions encourage her to talk more, which keeps the conversation flowing.

Open questions can’t be answered with one word. Try to reframe your questions to encourage a longer answer. Rather than asking, “Do you like living here?” you could ask, “What’s your favorite thing about living here?”

If you’d like her to offer longer answers, make sure that you reciprocate. If she asks a question, give her a full answer, even if you could just say yes or no. She’ll probably match your conversation style.[2]

4. Talk about things you’re interested in

When you’re talking to a girl you like, you want to show her that you’re fun to have around. If you ask about things you’re not interested in, she probably won’t feel interesting when she answers.

Instead, choose topics that interest you, and be curious about her thoughts and opinions. This doesn’t mean that you should dictate all the topics of conversation, but you’re allowed to move on from things you find boring, just as she is.

5. Keep the conversation light most of the time

Once you know someone well, deep conversations are often the most rewarding. When you’re just starting talking to a girl, it’s better to prioritize light, upbeat topics.

This lets you build up trust before you start discussing serious things.[3] It also lets her associate you with smiling, laughing, and generally having fun, which makes you more attractive.[4]

Don’t avoid serious conversations entirely. You don’t want to seem too trivial either. It’s about trying to find the right balance. If she brings up a serious topic, don’t try to make light of it unless she does.

6. Share something personal

Conversations are a two-way street. You’re trying to find out more about her, but you also want to let her get to know you. This means you will need to offer something personal to keep interesting conversations going.

You don’t need to have an anecdote about everything you talk about, but you try to have an opinion on topics you bring up. If you ask her where she would most like to live in the world, for example, try to have an answer for yourself.

7. Focus on her thoughts and dreams

When you’re getting to know a girl, try to focus on learning more about her as a person rather than her life history. Often, this means talking about hopes, dreams, and aspirations.

Asking about her hopes for the future can often be a safer topic than her past, as it lets her avoid anything she might not want to talk about.

Try asking hypothetical questions, such as, “What would you do if you didn’t need to go to work?,” or “What would be your ideal superpower?”

8. Ask deeper questions to avoid interview mode

When talking to friends, you probably don’t cover lots of different, unrelated topics in quick succession. Instead, you probably talk about something for a while and then move on to a related topic quite smoothly. Recreate this smooth way of keeping a conversation going with a girl by talking more in-depth about a specific topic.

Once you find a topic that seems to be interesting to her, ask more questions about it. For example, if she says she likes music, you could ask whether she likes to listen or prefers to play an instrument. You could then ask about whether she’d like to perform, how she feels while she plays, and what made her choose that instrument.

9. Try being unusual

No one wants to be bland. If you try to hide unusual or unique aspects of yourself, that’s exactly how you’ll come across. Conversations are about showing a girl who you are in a way that keeps her interested in knowing more.

If you feel yourself avoiding topics to make it easier to blend in, try to remind yourself that other people actually judge us far less than we expect.[5] This can make it easier to be brave.

If you can’t think of anything unusual to say or share about yourself, try to come up with unusual descriptions of something you often do or enjoy, such as your job.

Here are some examples of unique descriptions for several professions:

Writer: I make things up for a living.

Software engineer: I make silicon do math.

Software tester or Quality Controller: I get paid to break things.

Bank staff: My job is giving other people money.

This is deliberately confusing, so quickly smile and explain. You can prepare these fun answers in advance, but don’t overuse them. These work when delivered with confidence, so use them if they feel natural. If not, stick to whatever makes you feel comfortable.

10. Give honest compliments

Compliments make us feel good, so include some in your conversations with a girl you like. If this sounds tricky, check out our guide to giving great compliments.

There are two kinds of compliments; those which continue the thread of the conversation and those which break it. Here’s the difference.

“Keep going” compliments

These should be the most common compliments you give. They are quite light compliments, such as “That’s a really interesting way of thinking about it,” “You’ve really thought about this,” or “You can’t stop there. Tell me more.”

It’s difficult to use too many of these. She probably won’t even notice them as compliments, but they’ll make her feel good about herself. This makes her feel good about you as well.[6]

Overt compliments

These obvious compliments can create a pause or disconnect in the flow of the conversation. That’s a good thing, as it lets her realize that you mean the lovely thing you just said.

For example, you might be talking about hobbies when you say, “Your face lights up when you talk about this. It’s beautiful to see your passion.” It’s unexpected and pauses the conversation, but feels good to hear. These disrupt the flow of conversation, so use them sparingly.

11. Match her energy

Have you ever worried about appearing overwhelming? How about dry or boring? Many guys worry about both. There’s no right answer. The perfect energy level with one person can come across as boring in a different place or with a different person.

To find the right balance with the girl you’re talking with, match her energy level. This helps keep her comfortable and engaged in the conversation.

If she’s relatively quiet and quite still, keep your voice low and your movements small and slow. If she’s excited and enthusiastic, increase your volume and try to be a little bit more lively.

12. Watch your body language

Even the best lines or conversation starters will fall flat if you come across as bored or aggressive. Having open, positive body language can help you to keep a conversation going smoothly.

If you’re not sure about your body language, try checking out our in-depth guides:

13. Prepare to follow up

If you’re having a great conversation with a girl you like, prepare your follow-up. Here are some ways to set up talking to her again as part of a natural conversation.

Make vague plans

If you’re just starting a conversation, it might be too soon to ask for specific plans to meet up again. That doesn’t stop you from making vague suggestions, though.

If she mentions something that interests you, or if she sounds interested in something you mention, say that you’d be happy to go together sometime in the future. For example, if you’re talking about hiking, you can suggest showing her your favorite trail sometime.

Follow up with texts

Show that you’re interested in keeping in touch by dropping her a text after your conversation. Try to mention something that you had talked about to follow up on.

You could say, “It was lovely to meet you. I’d love to hear more of your thoughts about ___ sometime,” or, “Thanks for the company today. I’ve found that book we discussed, so let me know if you’d like to borrow it.”

Look for things you can check in on

Try to remember things she says about the future. These may be things that you can talk to her about afterward to show you were paying attention.

For example, if she mentions she has a job interview coming up, you could ask her how it went. If she tells you she’s taken up running, ask her how it’s going the next time you talk.

How to keep a conversation going with a girl you like over text

Talking to your crush over text can feel even trickier than face-to-face. You have time to think about your messages, but you can also feel under some pretty heavy pressure to come across well.

We have a great article on how to keep conversations going over text, but it can be different with a girl you like. Here are some suggestions to keep your text conversations going smoothly with the girl of your dreams.

1. Say something she can reply to

The most important aspect of keeping a conversation going with a cute girl you like over text or online is to make it an actual conversation. Ask a question, offer a topic of conversation, or say something interesting.

Check your messages by thinking about how the conversation would flow if she matched your style. If you say “What’s up” and she says “Nothing much,” where would you go from there? Change your messaging style so you’re creating a conversation.

Be especially thoughtful with online dating

On platforms like Tinder, Instagram, or Twitter, it takes very little effort to send messages to lots of different women, so guys often resort to the “hey and pray” approach.

This usually makes both sides feel bad. The girl you like realizes you’re playing a numbers game, which doesn’t make her feel special. If you’ve sent out lots of messages without positive responses, you’ll probably feel rejected.

Break this cycle by sending out fewer messages and putting a little more effort into each. Show that you’ve read her profile and highlight a couple of things that interested you. Tell her a little about yourself, and ask a question or two. Making an effort can make you stand out.

2. Send her pictures

Show her that you’ve been thinking of her, and create something to talk about by sending her pictures of something interesting from your day. This could be a beautiful sunset, a cute cat you saw while walking home, or a delicious dinner you’ve cooked yourself.

Pictures can also let her get to know you better. A picture of something you found funny shows your sense of humor, while a picture of a big pile of work on your desk tells her you’ll be working hard this week.

However tempting it might seem, don’t send intimate pictures unless she asks for them or sends some first. You’re probably trying to seem flirty and confident, but it can make a lot of women very uncomfortable.[7]

3. Mention how you feel about things

Conversations aren’t just about facts. We also want others to know how we feel about things. This is how we understand them better and feel a connection.

During a face-to-face conversation, we get a lot of information about someone’s feelings from their body language.[8] Over text, we don’t have that information. Keep chatting by saying something about what you’re thinking or feeling after giving a piece of information.

For example, if you say, “I’m just about to go for a run with the dog” you could add, “I really hope he doesn’t pull too much today,” or, “I love seeing him running next to me.” These extra details make the conversation feel more natural and flowing.

4. Say good morning or goodnight

Sending a text first thing in the morning or last thing at night is a good way to show her that she’s on your mind. It’s also something you wouldn’t often do with someone you weren’t interested in romantically, so it can help to show her you’re interested without any pressure.

Try including a question or observation in your message. Here are a couple of messages you could send at the beginning or end of the day:

  • “Good morning. Got a busy day planned?”
  • “I’m going to get some sleep now. I hope you get some rest before your test tomorrow!”

Tips the girl you like wishes you knew

One of the advantages of writing this article as a woman is that I can give you all the tips my girlfriends and I wish you all knew.

1. Remember she wants a smooth conversation too

While you’re worried about whether the conversation is going to sputter into an awkward silence, try to remember that she’s probably thinking the exact same thing. She’s probably had plenty of awkward conversations as well and is hoping this one flows well and ends with a smile. You’ve both got the same goal, so try to relax.

2. Talk to girls more often

Talking to a girl you like is easier if you talk to girls regularly. Having female friends or chatting with female coworkers can give you insight into women’s lives.

For example, guys (often with good reason) assume that women like to talk about fashion. But without female friends, you might never realize how excited we get about pockets. Younger women especially often talk about how women’s clothing never seems to have enough of them. So if you say our outfit looks cute, we’ll feel pretty good. Commenting (positively) on our skirt’s pockets might make us swoon.

That might be an exaggerated example, but here’s the point: demonstrating that you understand her perspective on the world helps to build trust.

Try to increase how many women you speak to regularly. If your friendship group is mostly male, consider taking up another hobby, or spend time talking to female work colleagues or your friends’ girlfriends.

3. Expect her to carry her end of the conversation

Try not to carry all of the responsibility for a great conversation with a girl you like. It’s easy to feel that maintaining the conversation is your job, but it’s not. Remind yourself that conversations are a shared responsibility, and make space for her to do her fair share.

For example, if you ask a question, give her time to ask one in return. If you feel responsible for driving the conversation, you might rapid-fire questions at her like she’s on a quiz show. Slow down and let her lead sometimes.

If she’s only giving short answers to your questions, try waiting to let her elaborate. Keep looking at her with an interested expression. This gives her permission to talk more.

If she’s really not responding, she might not want to talk. Check our article on how to tell when someone’s not interested in talking to you to understand the signs.

If she’s interested but assumes that the guy should make all the effort, think about why you’re attracted to her. Are you willing to put all the effort in long term? If not, maybe consider moving on.

4. Realize she’s not perfect

Everyone wants others to think they’re perfect, right? Not really. A guy who puts us on a pedestal is a bit like the guy who says he loves us on the first date; he’s not seeing our real selves. And that can be uncomfortable.[9]

Rather than thinking about her as your ideal woman, remind yourself that she’s human, with strengths and weaknesses just like anyone else.

5. Don’t just try to hook up

A great conversation leaves both of you feeling awesome and interesting. If she senses you’re only talking to her because you want to hook up, she probably won’t feel good. In your first few conversations, focus on getting to know her and becoming a friend.

Try not to worry about the “friend zone.” It’s actually very common for friendships to turn into romantic relationships.[10] Worrying about being “friend zoned” can make you come across as creepy or awkward. This is because you’re not being totally honest about what you want (a romantic relationship rather than a friendship), which she will probably pick up on.

Talking about the friend zone or the (related) “nice guy” problem also implies that being friendly is a form of “work” you’re doing to ‘earn’ her romantic interest. That’s unlikely to make her feel good about herself, or you.

Don’t try to hide your interest. Just make sure she knows that you think she’d make a great friend even if she doesn’t want to date you.

6. Assume that she probably knows her stuff

If you’ve heard women complaining about “mansplaining,” you might be left feeling a little confused and uncertain. Lots of guys worry that they’re going to come across badly if they give their opinion or talk about things they know.

We’re going to help you out here with one simple tip that can make sure you never get accused of mansplaining:

Assume that she’s both intelligent and knowledgeable.

Try to actively make this assumption, because even really great guys can struggle if they’re not working on it.

Treat her thoughts and opinions as just as valid as yours. You might be surprised at how much this makes you stand out, in a good way.

7. Show that you’re safe

As a guy, you might not have wondered whether you’re physically safe when talking to someone you’re interested in. As wrong as it may seem, the girl you like almost certainly has. Helping her feel safe allows your conversation to flow, and makes it more likely that she seeks out your company.

As a decent guy, you might be hurt by the thought that she doesn’t automatically feel safe. That’s OK. You know that you’re a good guy, but she doesn’t yet. So show her. You can make her feel safer by:

  • Not standing between her and the exit
  • Giving her easy opportunities to leave the conversation
  • Offering her your contact details rather than expecting hers
  • Respecting her personal space
  • Not pushing for personal details
  • Having control of your emotions. Being obviously angry can be scary
  • Having good empathy
  • Moving away from topics that make her uncomfortable
  • Respecting her boundaries
  • Using her preferred communication style, such as WhatsApp, Snapchat, or even talking on the phone

If thinking about what will make her feel safe is new to you, don’t worry. Studies show that even women rarely realize how much ”safety work” we do.[11] Learning how to make women feel safe in public can help the girl you like to feel comfortable talking to you.

8. Be honest and be yourself

Talking to a girl you like isn’t about trying to “win” her. Instead, it’s about finding out who she is, letting her know who you are, and seeing whether both of you are interested in taking it further.

“White lies” like pretending to be a huge fan of her favorite band aren’t a good idea if you’re hoping to build a long-term relationship. Instead, ask her about them and then tell her about your favorite band. This shows her that you’re honest, that you’re interested in understanding what she likes and you’re happy to share the things that make you happy. And that makes you someone she can trust.

Common questions

How do I get a girl’s attention?

The best way to get a girl’s attention is to be confident enough to approach her and ask a question. Listen and care about the answer. You don’t need to be loud or the life of the party. Being honest, thoughtful, trustworthy, and kind will make you stand out from others.

Show references +

Natalie Watkins writes about socializing for SocialSelf. She holds a B.A. in Experimental Psychology from the University of Oxford, an M.S.c. in Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience from the University of London, and is currently in her final year of an MSc in Integrative Counselling at the University of Northampton.

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Comments

  1. From your advice to girls

    “Remind yourself that you’re only crushing on a guy once you talk to him. Until then, you’re attracted to your image of him. Having the courage to start the conversation can help you start to get to know who he really is.”

    Um this is actually good advice to give to guys approaching girls. It will make it easier to talk to her.
    You should include it in this article.

    Reply

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