CK & GK Podcast

Hate Small Talk? Here Are 5 Surprisingly Easy Ways To Avoid It

August 15, 2023 Jenny GK and Caitlin Kindred
Hate Small Talk? Here Are 5 Surprisingly Easy Ways To Avoid It
CK & GK Podcast
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CK & GK Podcast
Hate Small Talk? Here Are 5 Surprisingly Easy Ways To Avoid It
Aug 15, 2023
Jenny GK and Caitlin Kindred

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Caitlin Kindred and Jenny GK hilariously challenge the art of small talk, as Jenny, a self-proclaimed introvert, embarks on a mission to conquer awkward social interactions by diving into deeper conversations and defying societal expectations.

Meet CK and GK, your go-to gurus for mastering the art of chit-chat. Known for their signature blend of humor and authenticity, the ladies use their own experiences as introverts to help others navigate the often daunting world of small talk. They’re the ideal guides for those keen to break out of their shells and connect with others on a deeper level. Drawing on a wealth of research and their innate understanding of human interactions, their approach to improving small talk is as refreshing as it is relatable.

In this episode, you'll discover effective strategies to elevate your small talk skills for more meaningful interactions.


*** More tips to master the art of small talk in this week’s blog post! ***

Sometimes there are awkward pauses in our show, but I've learned in my 39 years of existence that I am absolutely horrible at small talk. So today we're sharing five tips that will help me—mostly me—and everyone else, up their small talk game. —CK

The best support is a rating and a share.


Support the Show.

View our website at . Find us on social media @ckandgkpodcast on
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- Facebook
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Thanks, y'all!

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Send us a Text!

Caitlin Kindred and Jenny GK hilariously challenge the art of small talk, as Jenny, a self-proclaimed introvert, embarks on a mission to conquer awkward social interactions by diving into deeper conversations and defying societal expectations.

Meet CK and GK, your go-to gurus for mastering the art of chit-chat. Known for their signature blend of humor and authenticity, the ladies use their own experiences as introverts to help others navigate the often daunting world of small talk. They’re the ideal guides for those keen to break out of their shells and connect with others on a deeper level. Drawing on a wealth of research and their innate understanding of human interactions, their approach to improving small talk is as refreshing as it is relatable.

In this episode, you'll discover effective strategies to elevate your small talk skills for more meaningful interactions.


*** More tips to master the art of small talk in this week’s blog post! ***

Sometimes there are awkward pauses in our show, but I've learned in my 39 years of existence that I am absolutely horrible at small talk. So today we're sharing five tips that will help me—mostly me—and everyone else, up their small talk game. —CK

The best support is a rating and a share.


Support the Show.

View our website at . Find us on social media @ckandgkpodcast on
- Twitter
- Instagram
- Facebook
- TikTok
Thanks, y'all!

00:00:00 - Jenny GK
Okay, so this will be the start of season three. Should we record something to kind of celebrate season three? Probably.

00:00:06 - Caitlin Kindred
Okay, you want to just improvise that right now?

00:00:09 - Jenny GK
Yeah, but just give me a minute to think of something funny. Oh, it's Tuesday, you know.

00:00:23 - Caitlin Kindred
Welcome back. Back to our show. I'm about to start making a list of songs that I really hope you turn into an intro. Like, wouldn't it be nice? Right? But you have to sing it like Adam Sandler does in 51st dates when he's, like, scream, crying. It like, Wouldn't it be nice, too? Oh, my goodness, everyone. We're so glad you're here. And this is why sometimes there are awkward pauses in our show. Because I've learned in my 39 years of existence that I am absolutely horrific at small talk and all things related to small talk. So today we're sharing five tips that will help me, mostly me, everyone else, up their small talk game. So stick around for that after we catch up.

00:01:23 - Jenny GK
But first, you could call her Cabbage Patch. You could call her baby, but not Chatty Cathy. Caitlin's a real doll.

00:01:33 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, I love it. This one's awkward, but I don't care because it still made me laugh. My co host is the perfectly tropical like, why tropical know? I'll take the perfectly part. Right? Yeah, that's fair. Totally get it. It's just weird. Before we get too far into our show, I have a shout out for oh, fun. Yep. Sonya Kilman, who's the co host of the indie podcast Opinionated Lushes, which, coincidentally, is number seven on the top indie comedy chart on Good Pods. Good for pretty exciting. I know, right? Good job. Wrote an article called the Best Podcast for Supporting Women in Podcasting, and it got featured on Good Pods. And she put us on the list. Yeah, it's a super short article, but she says, Why listen to this podcast? It's entertaining and educational. This is a great podcast to listen to. And sometimes adulting can be a lot of fun. I thought that was so sweet.

00:02:49 - Jenny GK
I'm so excited.

00:02:51 - Caitlin Kindred
I know. I'm going to link the article. I'll make sure to put it on our website, too, so you guys can check it out. But it's super cute and fun again, it's just super short. She lists five shows you should listen to. Totally agree with what she chose. They're awesome.

00:03:03 - Jenny GK
Wait, she chose five?

00:03:06 - Caitlin Kindred
She chose five.

00:03:07 - Jenny GK

00:03:09 - Caitlin Kindred
We're number five, which is pretty cool. She only chooses five and we're number five. That's awesome.

00:03:14 - Jenny GK
That's amazing.

00:03:15 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. And of course, she had to put her show on there because, of course, actually really fun.

00:03:19 - Jenny GK
So really, we're in the top four, right?

00:03:21 - Caitlin Kindred
Exactly. Right. Because you have to vote for yourself. Exactly.

00:03:24 - Jenny GK
We talked about that last week.

00:03:26 - Caitlin Kindred
We did. All right, so that's one of my obsessions, but I want to hear what yours are. Okay.

00:03:31 - Jenny GK
So I'm back on the tank. It's been a while since I talked to the tank. We got some new fish yesterday. We got a very large gobi. Those are the ones that you've seen at the bottom of the tank. They kind of take a mouthful of sand and then they sift it out and get the food.

00:03:45 - Caitlin Kindred

00:03:46 - Jenny GK
We also got the last tang that we will have in the tank. We already had a blue tang that's like a dory fish. And we had a sail fin tang. Or we have, like these fish are still alive. We have a sail fin tang, and she kind of has this beautiful yellow and black and white stripe pattern. And then, of course, very large fins like sails. And then yesterday we got a coal tang. And she's beautiful, dark, but shimmers red and has sparkles on her. She's very so we're naturally we're naming these fish because, like you've heard before, our fish tank is just one big soap opera. And we need a name for this last tang. And John named her new Tang. Yes, right?

00:04:43 - Caitlin Kindred
Yes. It's perfect. So yesterday we were at this place called High Five, which has fun games like foosball, air hockey, stuff like that. And Sam starts making friends, and the kid that he made a friend with is wearing a Wu Tang shirt. And I was like, I don't know who your parents are, but we could be friends. Let's hang out.

00:05:03 - Jenny GK
You know? I'm about to make a new Tank shirt.

00:05:06 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, yeah, you have to. And it has to have the fish on it.

00:05:08 - Jenny GK
Oh, yeah.

00:05:09 - Caitlin Kindred
I have to say, folks, I did see the fish tank, and I could just sit there and watch. I had to leave after, like, five minutes, and I was disappointed that I had to leave because I was like, this is the most soothing thing, and it's actually really interesting, like, what's in there and what they're doing. And I got to see the shrimp that looks like the one in Finding Nemo that cleans the tank up. It's really cool. I'm really into it. I love the tank. I can't wait to meet New Tang. Oh, my goodness. All right, well, I'm going to share my animal obsession thing, too. Have you seen the animals that talk with buttons?

00:05:49 - Jenny GK
No. Are we talking like Stephen Hawking?

00:05:52 - Caitlin Kindred
A little bit. For animals. Right, for animals. Okay, so you're basically watching these videos of dogs and cats communicating with their humans with wow. So the animal will go over to a button. They'll press it with their paw, and the button might say, like, food or loud or play or whatever.

00:06:18 - Jenny GK

00:06:20 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. And then the owner will go over and push a few buttons back and ask a question, and the animal will respond. Well, I am very fascinated by these videos, and I cannot get enough of them. I think it's so interesting what you can teach animals to do. Dogs, you know, you can train to do things like that. And everyone feels like my dog understands the things that I'm saying. It's the cats that I'm like, I'm sorry. The cat is going to answer. The cat is going to talk to you.

00:06:50 - Jenny GK

00:06:51 - Caitlin Kindred
And I completely lose my mind. Well, I had to get on the train. So I have two buttons oh, my God. That are set up right now. I do. I have two buttons, and one of them is for going to bed, and the other one is for playing because they tell you not to set them up for treat right away because then they learn to push the button and they automatically get a treat. Right. So every night when we're going to bed, I push the button, and the button says, Bed sleeping. And we all go and I push the button like two times. And then I go to my room and wouldn't you know it, they come right behind me and they get right on the bed. I know, it's wild. It's wild. And the other one is for playing. So we'll tap the button and it says play. And then we get some of the toys out and we start playing with the kittens just to see what they're going to do. And one of them, I swear he's going to push that button. He comes over to the buttons every time I push it. He's ready to tell me something. And I'm waiting for them to do it on their own. And there's a few training videos I need to watch to learn more about how to do it. But I also bought another kit so that I can add on more buttons. And I'm going to add on things like our names so that if they want to know where we are, they can ask and their names so they can say, like, where's Jack? Where's Ty?

00:08:09 - Jenny GK
Oh, my gosh.

00:08:11 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. And there's going to be one that says food, ultimately, eventually one that says litter, things like that, so that they can tell me what they need. I've seen ones that say hurt. Like, the dog will go over and say hurt, and then they'll tell their owner they're hurting, which was the main impetus behind this. Because cats don't tell you when they're in pain. Right. They're really good at hiding when they're suffering, kind of like that. A lot of us are like that. Right. I want to make sure that I ultimately get them to a point where they can tell me if something's wrong, if they're not feeling good. So that's really where this is going. But like kind of into, like, I really, really want to make this work because I think it'd be so cool to be able to understand what they want and what they need and be able to talk back to them in ways that they so suck it, Coco.

00:09:05 - Jenny GK
These cats can talk.

00:09:07 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, my gosh. You take that back right now. Cocoa gorilla. Is the best. Anyway, that's my obsession.

00:09:15 - Jenny GK
Okay, well, now it's time for my.

00:09:17 - Caitlin Kindred
Favorite part, the gym of the week.

00:09:19 - Jenny GK
And so I've had a lot this week, but this one comes as a special request. As y'all know, listeners, there are a lot of stories that I choose not to send to Caitlin because I want to say them on the pod and get her genuine reaction. But I am sure that this one will get a laugh twice.

00:09:38 - Caitlin Kindred
I've already sent it to her and.

00:09:39 - Jenny GK
She said, you got to share this one on the pod.

00:09:41 - Caitlin Kindred
It's so good.

00:09:42 - Jenny GK
Kit, my four year old son asked me, mom, how high can you jump? I said, not very high. He looks back at me, oh, because you got to carry those boobs around deadpan immediately does not skip a beat. That's his explanation.

00:10:00 - Caitlin Kindred
I mean, yes. What's the line in will and grace. Grace is jumping on a trampoline. You know, Grace was like, flat chested, right? She's jumping on a trampoline, and she looks at Karen and she says, you know, if I had your boobs, I'd have two black eyes right now. And Karen answers with, you'd also have a rich husband. So good, right? That's great. So good. So maybe that's how you look at it is like, yeah, I can't really jump very high, but I have a great husband. That's what I think.

00:10:31 - Jenny GK
That's really funny.

00:10:32 - Caitlin Kindred
Well, mine is courtesy of my son, as they usually are. We all know at this point that he likes to sing in the shower.

00:10:38 - Jenny GK

00:10:39 - Caitlin Kindred
So this week it was somebody once told me the world is macaroni, and I if only the world were macaroni. Right. Amazing. But I was like, as a child of the early aughts, I cannot let you think that those are the words. We have to change this right now. So did you know that the words to All Star come right back to you? I know the words way too well. That is really funny. Head is full of, like, random Will and Grace and Friends quotes and then song lyrics from the early on, if.

00:11:28 - Jenny GK
I was making my 90s list, all.

00:11:30 - Caitlin Kindred
Star would be on it. Yeah, it has to be. So now we know the lyrics to the song where we've been working on. This is correct. But then this also weirdly ties together. We've put their promo on our show before TV. Trivia pod did a shrek episode.

00:11:46 - Jenny GK
Oh, my gosh.

00:11:46 - Caitlin Kindred
And they were putting Trivia on their Instagram page, and I was like, I know that answer. I know that answer. I know that answer. And it was like one of them was when he goes to the Dulach place and it plays that it's a Small world sort of thing, and it's like, shine your shoes, wipe your like, I know every word. I know every single word to that movie. I'm obsessed with it. So it weirdly came in together. So now I feel like Sam needs to watch Shrek so that he can see how it all comes together. But the world is macaroni, guys.

00:12:15 - Jenny GK
I love it. I'm in.

00:12:17 - Caitlin Kindred
Yep. All right, we're going to take a quick break, and I'm going to have a promo from Actually Opinionated Lushes. Thanks to them for promoting us. And we'll be right back.

00:12:35 - Jenny GK
Three, two, one.

00:12:37 - Caitlin Kindred
Okay, we're back.

00:12:38 - Jenny GK
Oh, wait. Did you hear the countdown? Sorry, we were supposed to cut that out.

00:12:44 - Caitlin Kindred
We didn't. It's fine.

00:12:45 - Jenny GK
Okay, so today is five tips to up your small talk game. Now, this is a conversation that I have to have about once a year with new people in my life, whether it be starting a new school year or a new book club or something. I have to explain that I am an introvert.

00:13:11 - Caitlin Kindred
You're like an extroverted introvert.

00:13:14 - Jenny GK
I am loud and bubbly and overly excited, but my energy comes from myself. And so when there is structure and I know just what to expect, I can bounce right off the walls. But put me at a cocktail party and I am quiet and awkward and spilling things and just looking ridiculous.

00:13:35 - Caitlin Kindred
Yes, this is also me. I do this, too.

00:13:38 - Jenny GK
So today is to improve those of us who identify as introverts and say, okay, the smalls talk thing way too hard. Okay, so the inspiration for this was an article, an Idea Pod, written by Tina Fey. No, the other one. And it's all about conversationalist phrases, so I pulled just a couple from this article, but the link will be there so you can read the whole thing. Instead of saying, oh, that's interesting, try tell me more. Or if you want to be hip, say more.

00:14:14 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, say more. I've heard say less.

00:14:16 - Jenny GK
You've heard say less.

00:14:18 - Caitlin Kindred
I like, say more.

00:14:20 - Jenny GK
It's passing the baton to the other person.

00:14:22 - Caitlin Kindred

00:14:22 - Jenny GK
Keep talking. Ask questions like, how do you feel about oh, I've never thought of it like that. Just saying that is enough for someone to and, you know, a lot of people have this misconception or whatever. They'll just continue on. And then this is my favorite from Faye's article. She says, ask, how have you been? She calls it the how are you? On steroids. I call it the how are you? That you actually mean, oh, how many times? Oh, how are you? I'm fine.

00:15:00 - Caitlin Kindred
Okay. Yeah.

00:15:00 - Jenny GK
All right, conversation over. How have you been? Oh, my gosh, we've been so busy. I cannot believe with the school starting and DA DA DA. I mean, now someone is beginning to talk, and you can sit back and listen for your cue to step in.

00:15:14 - Caitlin Kindred
Can I just say real quick, some of these sound like lines that I would say to my child when I'm only half listening.

00:15:19 - Jenny GK
Oh, yeah.

00:15:20 - Caitlin Kindred
You know what I mean? Like the oh, tell me more about that. You did Godzilla movie. Tell me more about how this Pokemon is a fire type and can shoot fire out of its cheeks. I don't know.

00:15:36 - Jenny GK
Same thing.

00:15:37 - Caitlin Kindred
It does the same thing where it prompts them to keep talking, and hopefully it's an adult so you're actually paying attention and they're not talking about Pokemon, but still but you don't have to.

00:15:46 - Jenny GK
Invent something to talk about, right?

00:15:47 - Caitlin Kindred
Exactly. Yeah.

00:15:49 - Jenny GK
Okay, so the first one was to weave in these professional conversationalist phrases. Okay.

00:15:56 - Caitlin Kindred

00:15:56 - Jenny GK
My next tip is to steal a couple of ideas from Time magazine. The author Angela Haupt, wrote an article all about upping your small talk game called Small Talk Tips and Benefits. And she says, take advantage of free information. She's quoting Deborah Fine, who wrote the fine art of small talk? And they say, if you're at an art gallery, start talking about the art. If you're at a school function, start talking about your kids. If you are at a work function, talk about the work you do.

00:16:33 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. Okay.

00:16:35 - Jenny GK
That's the free information. She also says, if someone asks you a question, respond generously. Now, this does not necessarily mean talk about yourself for an hour and a half, but give detail. Just like when someone says, how have you been? They're trying to pass the conversation back to you. Do them the same favor. If someone asks you a question and you think you can speak to it for a while, do it.

00:17:01 - Caitlin Kindred

00:17:02 - Jenny GK
And then she says, in mixed company, if it's not part of the event, skip questions about marriage, kids, and work. So if you are at a mixer that is not related to work, don't ask someone, what do you do for a living? Because the answer might be, I got laid off last week.

00:17:21 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah, that makes a lot of sense.

00:17:23 - Jenny GK
Okay, my next tip, come prepared with small talk.

00:17:28 - Caitlin Kindred

00:17:29 - Jenny GK

00:17:29 - Caitlin Kindred

00:17:30 - Jenny GK
This is like do your homework. This is an article by Vernon Gunnerson with the Muse.

00:17:37 - Caitlin Kindred
That's a good article. That's a good site.

00:17:39 - Jenny GK
Yeah. He says, Read up on current events. Now, not necessarily politics or religion. Come on, people. We know we don't talk about that, but sports, celebrity gossip, human interest stories, book or music releases or reviews of recent books and music releases.

00:17:56 - Caitlin Kindred
Does this mean that I can just randomly go up to people and ask them if they watch Vanderpump Rules?

00:18:01 - Jenny GK
No, but after they give you your name, you can.

00:18:07 - Caitlin Kindred
Fair. Okay. I feel like that encompasses a lot that's human interest, celebrity gossip, and it did just get nominated for an Emmy. So I feel like that's a lot of things.

00:18:18 - Jenny GK
You could start with, who do you like in the Emmys? I like vanderpump.

00:18:22 - Caitlin Kindred
I like vanderpump.

00:18:25 - Jenny GK
Now, Vernon did forget to mention to listen to our show and talk about it, but my guess is in the part two, that will be in there.

00:18:32 - Caitlin Kindred
Also, I feel like we do do this right. Like, we give you some Fodder.

00:18:38 - Jenny GK

00:18:39 - Caitlin Kindred
Didn't use our show for that. Absolutely. I think that that's a good idea. I mean, you could go up to anyone right now and be like, have you seen the Barbie movie? Let's talk about the Barbie movie. Although I haven't seen it yet, but.

00:18:51 - Jenny GK
That even is enough. Okay. Have you seen the Barbie movie? No.

00:18:55 - Caitlin Kindred

00:18:56 - Jenny GK
I haven't seen it yet.

00:18:57 - Caitlin Kindred
I haven't seen it yet. But tell me, right? Yes.

00:19:00 - Jenny GK

00:19:01 - Caitlin Kindred
Love it.

00:19:02 - Jenny GK
So we had weave in some professional conversationalist phrases, defer to Time magazine, and then come prepared. Okay. So my next tip is to learn from the masters, the toastmasters. Caitlin, what do you know about toastmasters?

00:19:21 - Caitlin Kindred
Literally nothing.

00:19:22 - Jenny GK
Okay. Toastmasters International is an organization that their whole purpose is to help people become better public speakers.

00:19:31 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, cool. I love that. Yeah.

00:19:34 - Jenny GK
Being better at writing toasts, giving toasts.

00:19:37 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. I would have guessed that. Okay. Or, like, they really are really good at spreading.

00:19:44 - Jenny GK
Toastmasters. Put out an article called The Art of Small Talk, and it was written by Patricia Fry. Okay. In this article, it talks a lot about body language, and when I am feeling awkward and I am having a hard time in small talk, I know my body language starts to show disinterest, and it's because I'm uncomfortable. So I'm starting to close in a little bit. So she says, Just be aware of that face the speaker unfold your arms. Maybe lean forward when something is interesting, if you're sitting down, kind of lean over your lap a little bit. Of course, make eye contact, but not that weird eye contact where you're staring at someone, like, trying to change their soul or something. And then when the statement is appropriate, make a nod, show that you're listening, and give some nonverbal feedback. It might actually have the other person continue to talk.

00:20:39 - Caitlin Kindred
Good point. I feel like the unfolded arms piece is a good I'm one of those people who doesn't know what to do with white arms. Right.

00:20:46 - Jenny GK
Hold something.

00:20:47 - Caitlin Kindred
Right. I need to find something to hold, but if it's the wrong something, I'll fidget, right. And then it makes it look like I'm really uncomfortable. So maybe I just need to put, like, a glass in my hand, right. That forces me to either pass it back and forth, and you can be.

00:21:03 - Jenny GK
Mindful of what's in the glass.

00:21:06 - Caitlin Kindred

00:21:06 - Jenny GK
Like, you do not need to drink 17 beers just so you can be comfortable. You can hold a non alcoholic beverage.

00:21:15 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. That's why I said a glass and not like, my bevy. Right.

00:21:20 - Jenny GK
That becomes a tricky path if you're not careful. But a glass is a great option. Even a cocktail napkin, right?

00:21:28 - Caitlin Kindred

00:21:29 - Jenny GK
That you just finished a drink or you just finished an order of, and now you've got a cocktail nappy in your hand. If you're at a work event, it's okay to be holding a pen and a pad. It's okay.

00:21:41 - Caitlin Kindred
You know what I learned? This is from one of the clients that I have who's a salesperson. And she was talking about if you're someone who's inclined to kind of hold back and not engage with other people at work events, she said, get a small plate. Get a small plate when you're getting food because it will force you to get back up. Oh, that's clever. Around. I was like, oh, that's really smart. Because if it's a work event that everyone's eating at right. And you know you're hungry, if you get something really you know what I mean?

00:22:13 - Jenny GK

00:22:14 - Caitlin Kindred
Force you to get up and move back and forth to get more food. I thought that was an interesting that is really interesting.

00:22:19 - Jenny GK
I like that.

00:22:21 - Caitlin Kindred

00:22:22 - Jenny GK
Anyway, okay, so my last tip, avoid it altogether.

00:22:29 - Caitlin Kindred
This is the one I'm here for, right? Tell me more.

00:22:32 - Jenny GK
Tell me how can I get good at small talk? Don't do it. Now, a lot of articles will tell you practice, practice, practice. No, practice in the elevator. Practice with your server at a restaurant. Practice when you're waiting at the bus or the train station. Practice when you're in line at the grocery store. Practice, practice, practice. I am here to tell you just skip it.

00:22:56 - Caitlin Kindred
Skip the small talk altogether. Yeah.

00:22:59 - Jenny GK
Okay. So there's a couple of ways to do that. The first one is to skip over the small talk and ask deeper questions. You can say something like, hey, can I ask you a weird question? The person's going to say yes.

00:23:16 - Caitlin Kindred
They're not going to say no, that's strange. They're going to say, yeah, sure.

00:23:19 - Jenny GK
And then ask them, what's an unusual place that you've traveled to. What's something that you wish you could do more often?

00:23:26 - Caitlin Kindred

00:23:27 - Jenny GK
Right. Dig a little deeper. You don't have to necessarily get personal with it, but these questions are more than just read any good books lately?

00:23:43 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, in your right, right? Yeah, yeah.

00:23:47 - Jenny GK
Okay, so that's skip over the small talk. The next one is take on a more comfortable role for yourself. If you are at a party, help out the host.

00:23:58 - Caitlin Kindred
OOH, that's a good one.

00:24:00 - Jenny GK
Right? Chitchat while you're pouring glasses of wine or setting out food or cleaning up, take on a more independent job. Just recently, I was volunteering with a bunch of people that I did not know very well. I had only met them one other time, and they were explaining what the roles were in the volunteer event, and one of them was cutting up and breaking down boxes. I said, oh, I'll take that.

00:24:25 - Caitlin Kindred
Sign me up.

00:24:27 - Jenny GK
Really? And I said, yeah, I can do it. I know this is a job for really only one or two people.

00:24:33 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. And I don't have to. So I'm not with anyone. I don't want to do more than.

00:24:38 - Jenny GK
Have a little bit of small talk with someone, but I know I'm going to work with them for 1520 minutes, maybe an hour. And during that time, our conversation will evolve. It will not be a lot of two minute conversations.

00:24:51 - Caitlin Kindred
Right. And it will most likely start because of something that you do with a box. That's awkward. Right? Yeah. Like, you hit yourself in the face with it while you're breaking it down or whatever. Yeah, exactly.

00:25:03 - Jenny GK
So I said, yes, put me on the box duty.

00:25:06 - Caitlin Kindred
See, this is my go to move. If I'm in a small talk conversation and I don't want to be there anymore, I'll be like, do you need some can I refresh your glass?

00:25:16 - Jenny GK
Yes. That was my next one was?

00:25:18 - Caitlin Kindred

00:25:19 - Jenny GK
Ask if anyone needs refills.

00:25:21 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah, it's really easy.

00:25:23 - Jenny GK
And just say, oh, I'm going to go get another glass of water. Does anybody need anything?

00:25:27 - Caitlin Kindred
And then you can bring it back. And then they say, thank you, and then hopefully they start talking or you just never make it back.

00:25:33 - Jenny GK
Or they say, no, I'm good, and you say, okay, thanks. And you walk away.

00:25:37 - Caitlin Kindred
And you walk away.

00:25:40 - Jenny GK
There you go.

00:25:42 - Caitlin Kindred
Oh, my gosh, I love it. I'm here for that one.

00:25:45 - Jenny GK
I mean, why not? If it makes you uncomfortable, don't put yourself in a situation where you have to do it. There are so many times in our lives where we have to make small.

00:25:56 - Caitlin Kindred
Talk, so I think there needs to be another episode about what happens when you're the person who gets left in the conversation, right. When someone else is like, I'm going to go get a beverage. Do you need one? And then they walk away. And then you just are standing there awkwardly. We need to come up with a face.

00:26:13 - Jenny GK
Oh, how to break into another group.

00:26:16 - Caitlin Kindred
Right. Or what to do when you're just standing there by yourself. Right. I was the person who got left at the party because the small talk wasn't engaging. What do I do now? Yeah. I love it. Okay. All right, what else?

00:26:30 - Jenny GK
Okay, so my last tip for avoiding small talk altogether is to be a teenage girl going to the bathroom. Travel in pairs, find someone you know and tell them what you're dealing with. Be vulnerable, be open. And say, small talk can make me really uncomfortable. Will you stay with me until I establish a conversation? And I let you know that I'm okay?

00:26:58 - Caitlin Kindred

00:26:58 - Jenny GK
And if someone asks you that, say yes.

00:27:01 - Caitlin Kindred
Yeah. Don't be the person.

00:27:03 - Jenny GK
No, that's weird. I don't want to help you meet people. No, of course.

00:27:07 - Caitlin Kindred
Right. My social anxiety meter is through the roof right now. Can you just hover for a little while until I'm clearly more comfortable? Yeah, I think that someone will help you with that, for sure. It's awkward.

00:27:17 - Jenny GK
It's awkward. It's uncomfortable. And chances are that person might be hoping for someone to do the same thing for them.

00:27:25 - Caitlin Kindred
Very true. I like it.

00:27:27 - Jenny GK

00:27:29 - Caitlin Kindred
Okay, so your five are weave in expert conversationalist phrases, right.

00:27:36 - Jenny GK
Tell me more. How do you feel about that?

00:27:39 - Caitlin Kindred
Snag a few ideas from Time magazine, which is basically like, use the free information context clues around you to have a conversation about those items.

00:27:51 - Jenny GK

00:27:52 - Caitlin Kindred
Okay. Bone up on some small talk topics that are not religion or politics. Unless you're at a political event or a religious event. Right.

00:28:05 - Jenny GK
Talk about something you just recently bought on Amazon and you think is interesting.

00:28:09 - Caitlin Kindred
Come prepared.

00:28:10 - Jenny GK
Come prepared. Have something in your mind. This is going to be my go to when it's silence and awkward and weird. I'm going to say, oh, my gosh, guess what I just got in the mail the other day.

00:28:20 - Caitlin Kindred
Have you seen jury duty yet? That's my go to recently. Yes. Okay. The fourth one was use body language to express interest.

00:28:29 - Jenny GK
Keep them talking. Listen, nod, lean in, weave in one of those phrases. Oh, tell me more.

00:28:38 - Caitlin Kindred
Yes. Love it. And your last one was do everything you can to avoid it. Avoid it.

00:28:47 - Jenny GK
How do you make small talk better? Don't do it.

00:28:50 - Caitlin Kindred
Don't do it.

00:28:52 - Jenny GK
And don't do it by skipping over it and just having a deeper, more meaningful conversation. Don't do it by being useful and helpful and finding a role that makes you feel comfortable and you can talk about. Right. If you're serving punch, you can chitchat with people while you're doing that, but the punch is now the activity you have built in structure to the event.

00:29:13 - Caitlin Kindred
Very helpful.

00:29:15 - Jenny GK
And of course, grab a buddy.

00:29:19 - Caitlin Kindred
Buddies are always helpful. Yes. Just like you. You're my buddy. Oh, thanks. All right, I think that's our show today, guys.

00:29:28 - Jenny GK
Okay, well, whether you are deciding to talk about the weather or not, make a choice.

00:29:38 - Caitlin Kindred
Anna, grab a friend and run to the bathroom. Maybe she'll gas you up while you're in there. Yeah. All right. Bye.

Master the Art of Small Talk