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Being a seamless conversationalist comes naturally to some more than others. But even those who enjoy a good yabber are not necessarily carrying a conversation in the wittiest or most engaging way. Tim Herrera offers three tips for pulling off a worthwhile exchange in the New York Times. He writes that the trick is to be genuine, interested and resist the temptation to hog a conversation. That may be simpler said than done – but it is not impossible to improve your chats and take them from weary to worthwhile.

Understand the three tiers of talk

The three tiers of a good conversation escalate in how probing or controversial they can be. Using the tiers as a guide for what topic you decide to raise next can help navigate ambiguous social situations and save you from moments of awkward silence.

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