When you are engaged in a conversation with one or more people, you have to essentially take turns at speaking. If one person is doing all the talking, that is a lecture, not a chat. So, one very common mistake people will make is that they monopolize the conversation and end up doing all of the talking. People will often get very tired of just being talked to; so try to avoid that.

Next, stay on subject. If everyone is talking about how much they loved the latest production of "The Fantastics" that a local theatre group is putting on, do not change the subject to the upcoming Presidential election.

Then, when other people are talking, stay focused, and pay attention. If your eyes loose focus, glaze over and you start looking out the window at some birds flying by, the other people will not want to talk to you much. You need to listen to what they say, and ask questions that reflect the fact that you are doing just that. It will make the other people happy to see that you are interested in what they have to say.

And that leads to the next point - do not be insulting, sarcastic, or interrupt the other speakers constantly. If you do not agree with what they have to say, simply agree to disagree. Keep in mind, some people will not agree with your point of view. You are going to want them to respect what you have to say; so you do the same to them.

Often times, people will say things that will make you want to offer them advice. Maybe they are having a problem at work, with their spouse or kids, or some such thing. Well, do not just offer advice. There is an old saying about advice: wise men do not need it, and fools will not heed it. So, do not offer it. Then, there is the reserve of this situation. If someone asks you your opinion or for advice, then try (as best you can) to give it. If the issue is on a subject that you truly can not speak about, then go ahead and be honest about it, and tell them that. But, if you think you have something to say on the matter, then do so.

There is also a little side rule to this issue, that of offering advice or making criticism regarding something they did in the past. As an example, if a friend left a bike outside his back door and it got stolen, do not ask him why he did something so dumb. It is in the past; what good will it do to point out his mistake now?

Next, there is the issue of being a gossip. If you talk about people who are not there, some people might find it fun and enjoyable. Yet, deep down, maybe later, when they're at home, they're going to wonder if you do the same to them, talk about them behind their back to others? That is not the sort of thing that is going to endear you to them and make them want to talk to you on a regular basis.

Finally, there is the issue of people listening to you. In the same way that you need to pay attention to others when they talk, you want them to listen when you talk. Well, if you notice their eyes starting to loose focus, maybe they even yawn or look at their watch, these are signs that maybe you have been talking to long. If you drone on and on about the same thing for a long time, people can get bored, and then they will not relish the prospect of future chats with you. So, know when enough is enough!

Author's Bio: 

Peter Murphy is a peak performance expert. He recently produced a very popular free report: 10 Simple Steps to Developing Communication Confidence. Apply now because it is available for a limited time only at: communication skills