My parents love to tell the story about a wedding they attended many years ago. Yes, the bride was beautiful, and they were thrilled for the happy couple. But that’s not why they love to tell the story. Instead, they repeat it because of the conversation they had at the dinner table with their friends.
After the standard “How have you been” question and answer session, there was a lull in the conversation. So one of my parent’s friends piped up with a statement/question that blew their socks off.
“Name the greatest rock n roll song of all time.”
After thinking for a second, a debate ensued that not only lasted the entire evening but many weeks after through email, text messages, and social comments. To this day, I don’t think they settled on one song, one band, or even one decade!
The next time they all got together, they asked their friend, “Why on earth did you ask us that question? We will never settle on an answer!”
To which they replied, “Well, that was the point. It was and is the best conversation starter ever!”
Have you ever been with a group of people, or even an individual, where the conversation falls flat? Or, maybe you’ve simply run out of things to talk about. Furthermore, perhaps you’ve heard the same stories repeatedly, and it’s just time to move on to something new?
But how do you decide what to talk about next? Or, maybe you can’t think of anything to ask.
Start with something random.
According to TheImportantSite.com, “Questions provide unique frameworks for thinking, which can open up doors to unexpected revelations.”
I mentioned a few times on social media this week that we recently returned from our annual family reunion in North Carolina. It’s one of the best weeks of the year, full of food, dancing, and catching up where things left off the year before.
Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t the best, so we found ourselves inside or on the porch chatting instead of lounging on the beach. After we answered all the “routine” questions, we often wondered what to talk about next.
So, I decided to ask random questions for everyone to answer individually. The questions were light and required a one-word answer that typically didn’t need an explanation. (However, if you were razzed about your answer, you were welcome to offer a rebuttal to stand your ground)
We certainly weren’t solving the world’s problems, but who wants to do that on a beach vacation anyway!?
And while it might have seemed like a juvenile or silly idea to some, it allowed us to learn something new about a topic or the person who answered. The best part? The game was free and took less than 10 minutes to put together!
While I never thought to ask my family what the greatest rock n roll song of all time was, here are a few other questions I did ask. Use them to spark your own conversations with family or friends. And remember to write the answers down, so you don’t forget all the new things you discover!
The Questions Game:
Ask a series of questions where the audience responds with one word (although you can make up whatever rule(s) you would like). Go around the circle, asking each person for their answer. Once the process is complete, the asker can continue with a new question or pass the baton to the next person in line.
- What tv show are you currently watching?
- What was the last movie you saw?
- What is the last film you saw at home?
- What is the last movie you saw in the theatre?
- What are you listening to right now?
- What is your favorite comedy movie?
- What is your favorite Christmas movie?
- What is the worst movie you’ve ever seen?
- If money was no object, where is the one place you’d love to visit?
- Who is your celebrity crush?
- What was the best concert you’ve seen and where?
- What’s your favorite comedian?
- What’s your favorite podcast?
- What are you reading right now?
- What kind of food do you consider yourself to be a connoisseur of?
- Where have you had the best version of this food? What restaurant?
- What would it be if you could only eat one particular food for the rest of your life?
- What’s the best recipe you make?
I’m sure there are millions of other questions to add to the list. What questions should I ask my family next year? Or, what do YOU think the greatest rock song of all time might be? Respond below!
You’re savvy “biz” friend,