7 Ways To Stop Talking To Someone Without Being Rude

There are times when you’ll encounter people who are up for a chat and will talk away. But you don’t want to talk and want to avoid them.

You might wonder: how do you stop talking to someone without being rude? How do you end a conversation politely, especially if the other person won’t stop talking?

Public Payphone, Bourke Street Mall, Melbourne, Australia

Sometimes you’re in the middle of something and talking isn’t ideal. Perhaps you’re avoiding the person talking to you altogether. Or you’re not in the mood for talking and it’s just bad timing.

You often mean well and don’t want to abruptly cut the person off – be it a friend or a complete stranger, talking in person, over the phone or through social media.

As an introvert who thrives on quietness and stillness, I don’t want to talk all the time. Don’t want to entertain small talk or in-depth discussions all day, even if my friends genuinely want to chat. Over time, I’ve learnt there are subtle yet intentional ways to quickly wind down a dialogue amicably without hurting anyone’s feelings.

Here are some of these ways to stop talking to someone and end a conversation gracefully.

1. Set time limits and boundaries

Make it clear how long you can chat to keep the conversation short. Someone might ask ‘How are you?’ and you could reply along the lines of, ‘Good. I’m heading off in a few minutes. How are you?’ If you’re already talking and there’s a pause in conversation, you could mention something similar.

Setting expectations on your availability at the start is a subtle way to say you are up for a short interaction. It’s a way of saying while you need time for yourself, you’re also happy to make time for the other person.

If the other person was after something from you, then they might get the hint and get straight to the point. When you set boundaries and someone feels you are avoiding them, then that’s their problem.

Public Payphone, Elizabeth Street, Melbourne, Australia

2. Move the conversation along

Genuinely engage with the other person right away, listening and focusing on what they are saying. Ask questions about what they seem excited about. Ask more questions to get them to open up, putting the attention on them to show they are important.

You could also use prompts like, ‘Oh, that’s interesting. What did you do next?’ to get the other person to the point. People are generally happier when they have more genuine conversations without the obligation of trivial small talk. So the sooner you engage with them, the sooner you can have a thoughtful discussion and the sooner you can get away.

Personally I like to listen and learn about the person whom I’m talking to. Being an intuitive introvert has helped me read people fairly well. It helps me to carry on conversations that make others feel valued – and then slip it in that I’ve got to go.

3. Use non-committal body language

If you’re chatting in person, you can try looking elsewhere, break eye contact or start slowly walking away. You could also use short and sharp responses to hint that you’re no longer interested in talking.

While turning away may come across as impolite, body language speaks louder than words. Body language is a natural extension of yourself for most part and many people can read and get social behavioural cues.

Public Payphone (2), Elizabeth Street, Melbourne, Australia

4. Pretend you’re on a call

It’s probably one of the oldest tricks in the book to avoid someone especially in public, pretending to be on a call. Or you could keep your head down with eyes glued to your phone, scrolling away without saying a word.

5. Read a book

If you have a book, pull out a book and read a book. Reading is generally regarded as a quiet, solitary activity and you need to focus to understand what you’re reading. Others might then be inclined to leave you alone to read.

Similarly, put on headphones and listen to music – another way to show others you want to be left alone.

During lunch time in the office (pre-pandemic times), I like pulling out a book while eating and have some quiet time reading. That or scroll on my phone. Most of the time my colleagues leave me alone. At times it actually takes saying ‘I’m reading’ or persistently looking down at my phone for others to get that I want to spend my short break alone away from the office chatter.

6. Put your hands up and be honest

Sometimes people won’t get that you don’t want to talk even after you’ve dropped subtle hints. Sometimes you have to be honestly upfront that you want to stop chit-chatting.

Theatrically interrupt the conversation in person by raising both hands up in surrender, excusing yourself saying you got to go. Or gesture the other way like a lollipop man saying your ride or train is coming along. Chances are the person talking will take note of your unexpected theatrics. Or maybe say you want to be left alone without raising your voice.

If you’re chatting virtually, try saying ‘I’ve got to go’ or ‘Talk to you later’ followed by an emoji, such as a heart or happy face to show you mean no hard feelings.

Public Payphone, Swanston Street, Melbourne, Australia

7. Walk away

If someone really won’t stop talking, walk away. It could be the more polite thing to do rather than use aggressive ways or language of saying you don’t want a conversation, avoiding any unpleasant confrontation.

If it’s a stranger who won’t stop talking to you and you feel uncomfortable, silently walk away (or block them online) as soon as possible to avoid potential stranger danger.

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Research has shown different people have different wants and expectations when talking to others. A Harvard study examined 932 conversations between pairs of people found conversations didn’t end when participants wanted them to. It also found about 69% of participants felt a point they wanted the conversation to end while the rest wanted to keep talking. Most participants also incorrectly estimated how long their partner wanted to converse.

Sometimes people want to keep talking to you because they are happy to see you. Maybe they are eager to share something with you. Maybe they want some company or are extroverts who feel energised when socialising with others – and conversational flow stimulates a sense of belonging.

While entertaining others is important, there’s a time and place to have a chat with someone. You’re entitled to have your physical and mental boundaries, even if it means dropping out of talking with someone because you aren’t up for it.

You are important and don’t forget to prioritise your own needs. Sometimes silence and being alone is what you may need to feel better again. As writer Susan Cain said on the importance of quietness:

‘Solitude matters and for some people, it’s the air they breathe.’

Public Payphone (1), Swanston Street, Melbourne, Australia

Notably different cultures have different ways of communicating and not wanting to communicate with others. Asian cultures are generally quieter and more reserved. If you’re someone who embodies these stereotypical Asian traits, perhaps you’re inclined to let others speak. People who are chatty might see your quietness as a great opportunity to talk over you and you could find it hard to pipe up to ask them to quiet down. Others might see you as ‘too quiet’ with not much to say and leave you alone after saying a few words to you.

Being both an Asian person with stereotypical traits and an introvert, there are many occasions when I want no talking. On one hand, each time someone talks to me, I want to be ‘save face’ polite and engage in conversation. On the other hand, that introvert side of me really wants quiet, and quietly but intentionally will use one or more subtle ways, stand up for myself and walk away from a conversation without a scene.

Having brief conversations and cutting conversations short doesn’t invalidate a relationship, especially with people who mean well. Those who care about you would respect your boundaries.

If you can joke around with someone, chances are they should be able to handle a blunt conversation and back off respectfully when you ask for peace and quiet.

How do you stop talking to someone politely?

189 thoughts on “7 Ways To Stop Talking To Someone Without Being Rude

  1. Sometimes talking to people can be the worst. Thanks for sharing! There’s always some risk that introverts can still come across as rude, but at a certain point one must do what’s best for themselves and not worry too much… it is worth a try to politely disengage of course

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    • You said it, ‘sometimes talking to people can be the worst’. I’m totally fine with people wanting to break off a conversation all of a sudden but some people don’t get it and really see it as rude. Always good to do what’s best for you and move along.

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  2. Great tips Mabel! I am more extroverted than you but there are times when conversations wear me down and I dont want to continue. My favourite saying is “I’m sorry I have to go now as I need to
    However I am the kind of person who likes to strike up a conversation with a stranger and sometimes this works and sometimes it doesnt. Most people like to communicate with other humans as we are social beings. But of course there is a time and place for a good chat 🙂

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    • Thanks, Charles. It sounds like you like engaging conversation and learned a lot from others. Agree that some conversations can wear you down and it can be a challenge to get away, especially if the other person looks happy talking to you. A lot of people need social interaction to fill their cup and that’s because as you mentioned, we are social beings. Hope you are doing well.

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  3. Simple tips that ought to be common sense, but I guess some people can’t take a hint sometimes. To be fair, I’m awful at determining if a person is talking to me out of politeness or truly interested in getting to know more about me…and forget about knowing if they want to stop talking. Thankfully, I’ve gotten slightly better over the years by watching body language videos on YouTube, but I have a ways to go before I can really hone in on having just the right amount of conversation for specific people. Thanks for sharing!

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    • I am sure you’ve never been that awful at reading people! Sometimes people like to keep to themselves so it can really be hard to gauge if they are interested in talking to you or wanting a conversation. Most of the time I assume the other person doesn’t want a conversation if they don’t say much after a few pleasantries. Hope you are doing well 🙂

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  4. Thanks for sharing Mabel. I enjoyed reading this. Sometimes it can be hard to stop a conversation or tell someone you don’t want to talk anymore because you care about how the other person might feel or you don’t want to come across as rude. It’s interesting how there are different ways to respond depending on the situation and who you may be talking to

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    • Thanks so much for reading, Katie 🙂 That’s so true, you don’t want to stop a conversation as you care about the other person’s feelings and care about them as a person. I think being as polite as possible makes it easier on the other person. Being honest about not wanting a conversation is in itself something to be respected – as opposed to putting in half an effort talking to someone. Hope you are doing well over there.

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  5. I can’t recall having trouble to end conversations but I often have a problem that I feel it’s similar: when at a party or social reunion, I just don’t know how to leave. Maybe I’ve been wanting to leave for some time but I don’t know how to. And the moment I say “I have to leave” people start replying: “Oh, not so soon!”. I hate it hahahaha. I really have a problem with this.

    On the topic of differences in conversation between Asians and Westerners, I have a good example. In China, when talking to someone and they say “Well I’m leaving, bye”, they turn around and leave (also when talking on the phone, they say “Bye” and hang up). In Spain, farewells take AGES. You can say “Well, I’m leaving” and then expect to have another 10 minutes of conversation. I don’t know why, but it’s like that hahaha.

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    • That’s such a good observation – going to a party or social thing and you don’t know how to leave. I think that happens a lot. And that’s so true when people say things along the lines of ‘It so early!’ when you are leaving 😄 Usually I’m always one of the first people to leave and I just go up to the hosts and excuse myself in front of everyone lol.

      That’s so interesting in Spain people drag out leaving for as long as possible. It might be the polite thing to do. That or wanting to avoid where you are going next 😄

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  6. Hello Mabel,
    Very nice to read your writing again, and you shared some very important and wise advice! I also noticed the new header illustration – it’s lovely. I hope you and all your dear ones are continuing to stay safe and healthy.
    Best wishes from Japan,
    Takami

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    • It is lovely to see you, Takami. Thank you for your kind words. Also thank you for complimenting the new header. It was illustrated by an artist called Pinodesk and you can find her on Etsy. We are doing okay here, still in lockdown. Summer is coming here in Australia and hope things will get better. Take care over there in Japan.

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  7. Hello Mabel,
    Very nice to read your writing again, and you shared some very important and wise advice! I also noticed the new header illustration – it’s lovely. I hope you and all your dear ones are continuing to stay safe and healthy.
    Best wishes from Japan,
    Takami

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    • That was exactly what I was thinking when I wrote this post – that many in Melbourne are eager to go out, socialise and talk after lockdown after lokdown For me I realised the solitude over this last year has been such a blessing.

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  8. Nice topic Mabel. While I’ve never come across a person who would indulge in unwanted conversation, I feel body language is an awesome tool to convey your thoughts. However, friends’ chit-chat is endless and we have a group here that could talk for hours and would accompany you to your car and wouldn’t stop till you say – ok, bye now. 😀

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    • Thanks, Balroop. Agreed that body language is a very good way to get you out of talking if you don’t want to talk or want to leave. I hope that has worked for you. It sounds like you and your friends are very supportive of each other, talking to each other until getting to the car…and talking the moment you step out of the car to say hi 😀

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  9. This is an excellent post. Most women I know have been trained not to be excessively polite, especially to men, and we get trapped in unwanted conversations all the time. Often, our hints and body language are too subtle–or the men are too unobservant–but when we finally walk away or say we have to go, men tell us we’re “rude,” or “stuck up,” etc.

    It’s good to have an arsenal of escape lines prepared in advance. 🙂

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    • Now that, is an excellent point. Women today are still expected to sit down and shut up, and listen to what they are being told. If we have an opinion, some may also consider it rude or overbearing. Or if you state an opinion, you could then face a barrage of mansplaining.

      I do think walking away is a very good response. But if you can deliver a punchline and walk away, even better.

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  10. These are fascinating suggestions. I try to be upfront and say I don’t have time to talk if I don’t. If I do have time yet, I don’t want to chat with the person trying to engage with me; I’ll usually persist, so I avoid being rude because you never know what benefit may come from the interaction for the person from me or from the person to me or both.

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    • Thanks, Gary. Hat’s off to you for trying to be upfront if you need to get away from a conversation. You must be used to it by now. Like you mentioned, sometimes I’ve chatted with people and I learned something or it lead to something. I think that’s how many connections here have been formed 😊

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  11. This is really useful my friend. I am also an introvert that finds small talk anxiety inducing. It feels forced rather than genuine conversational flow. Setting boundaries is so important even if they feel uncomfortable at first. Miss you my friend x

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    • Thank you my friend. Agreed, small talk is anxiety inducing. It’s gets worse when the person, especially a stranger, starts asking you questions. So setting boundaries straight up is important, or simply walking away. Miss you too my friend ❤

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  12. As always Mabel you give me a lot to reflect on. As an extrovert, who as you point out energizes through socialization, these are good reminders. I really like your first tip about setting expectations straight away. I will admit that one place I rarely speak is on a plane to someone I don’t know. I have been caught in hours of conversation and felt very uncomfortable. So I have my earphones at the ready. Perhaps in a plane there really is no escape and this the feeling of being trapped. And I’m an extrovert!

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    • Very kind of you to say, Sue. Thank you so much. You are always so eager for a chat and wanting to make sure the other person is okay. So hearing that you have earphones at the ready on the plane is surprising. Good on you for knowing your boundaries as an extrovert, and I hope the earphones have helped you get some quiet while flying. I would always be up for a chat with you, even on a long flight 😀

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      • The earphones have worked well. Although a few years ago I was using my earphone trick, but the gentleman beside me was quite relentless in starting up conversation. Once we got talking he turned out to be such an interesting individual. Dave and I ended up visiting him in both Ireland and Mexico in subsequent years. Perhaps it is good to have methods ready to stop conversation but also be flexible as one never knows where a conversation may lead!
        I’m delighted to hear you would be ready to have a chat Mabel. I treasure our time together those years ago.

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        • You are so right. Sometimes you never know where a conversation could take you, even if you are not in the mood for talking. That is so lovely you made a friend on the plane, and later ended up visiting him on your travels. A conversation can certainly take you places 😊

          I also treasure the afternoon we spent together those years ago. It was a pleasure to meet you.

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  13. I can relate to this. As an introvert myself, I’m often ‘trapped’ in a situation where someone just bumps into me and starts talking and keeps talking and talking. Usually what I do to escape from this is making up an excuse — I have to go to a meeting, or a friend is waiting for me, or something else. Most of the time it works, although there were rare occasions where the other person insisted on talking with me despite the signs I have given him/her.

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    • It’s good you can make some excuses to get away from a conversation. As you alluded, some people can be very insistent on talking and talking and not getting your hints. As an introvert, and maybe you can also relate, when people keep talking and don’t get the hint it wears me down and can be draining. So sometimes I’ll just say a quick by and walk away even though it seems rude. Hope all is well with you over there, Bama.

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      • Things are much better now in Indonesia, but the central government still implement restrictions which are based on a city’s/regency’s performance in handling the pandemic. The better the numbers are — low new and active cases, and high vaccination rates, among others — the lesser restrictions are imposed. Hope you too are doing well, Mabel.

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        • Good to hear things are much better know over there. Some countries are starting to open up. Maybe you can start traveling abroad soon, or if not more frequent travels close to home. I’m alright over here. Hope you have a good week, Bama 🙂

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  14. Hi Mabel,
    These are great tips. I don’t usually have any trouble ending a conversation if I need to, although I must admit that some people seem to drone on and on about their complaints as if it’s my duty to listen to them. If I felt it helped them, I wouldn’t mind so much, but I think they probably just blurt it all out to whoever they meet.
    Have a wonderful weekend. Stay safe.

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  15. I feel being frank is the best way. It is best to communicate that getting late for work is not good and I need to rush. Or even saying that I will catch you up a little later is fine as well. I’m sure some people are good at making alibi but then it varies from person to person. Suit yourself.

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  16. Great topic, Mabel. I’m astounded at how some people can really motor at the mouth. I’m a friendly sort and don’t mind a bit of chit chat but not on and on. It’s important to know when to end it and to take social cues from others who are maybe not as happy to see you as you are them. 🙂 I will try some of your tips next time.

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    • Really like how you say it, ‘some people can really motor at the mouth’. Some people have a lot of energy and can go on and on, which I find quite fascinating. It’s nice of you to engage in chit chat and entertain others when you re up for it. Also very considerate of you to observe social cues of others as and when they want to leave. Thank you for reading. Hope all is well with you 🙂

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  17. These are all grat suggestion, Mabel. I find that because of COVID I’ve had more text messages.
    People have stopped using the telephone. I think I like texting because one can always text back at a later time. Of course, these are less personal ways to interact but I think it will be the future way to communicate. My grandson, who’s 10 and has a cell phone, likes to text. I guess we have to adjust.
    As far as in person, I’m usually up front and will say, ” Sorry, this isn’t a good time. Let’s catch up on another day. But, it’s good to see you.”
    Fantastic topic … and, write …. Isadora 😎

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    • Such an astute observation, Isadora. Agree that these days people tend to text (phone text or online chat). That way you can reply when it suits you and when you feel you can give the other person your full attention. These days many of us live all over the world and so it makes sense to chat via text.

      That is lovely you and your grandson text – and hope the two of you have many memorable chats over text. Thank you for your support and take care 😊

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  18. What an interesting topic considering social distancing, the pandemic, and smart phones. I feel like folks don’t engage like they used to. I remember walking into a classroom and all the kids would be talking to each other — years later, they just stare at their phones.

    I think many today feel more comfortable staring and scrolling at their phones than striking up a conversation. I was talking to some single friends about meeting guys, and I can’t help but feel these days in this call-out culture and videos being so easily recorded that people would be terrified to talk to strangers! But apparently it’s different over there!

    As far as talking goes, I strive for balance, as much as possible. I listen then, depending on the situation, go from there. Older people can be lonely so I listen — I try not to be in a hurry and pay attention to people because I think having a supportive community is important. And you can make someone’s day by being there. Just yesterday, the drug store lady was talking so so much, my friends and I were all waiting, but she was obviously wanting to practice her English, so we let her talk.

    But in the city, where it’s more dangerous, I can understand how protecting your time and space might be the higher priority. I don’t know, now I’m remembering another time where a woman we met at a restaurant just talked for ages to us, her food was cold, but we listened. I guess we’re weird. 😛

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    • Wow, thanks for your reflection, Lani. A lot of food for thought there. Not surprising since you are a thoughtful and articulate writer 😛

      I did think about the pandemic when writing this post. As you said, these days people probably don’t engage like they used to. People seem absorbed in looking and scrolling on their phones. I totally agree with your single friends and anyone can record or screenshot what you chat or share about online. It’s no wonder why some people ghost others online when they feel uncomfortable.

      You are right that some people may be lonely, and it’s very kind of you to listen to others. It’s such a simple gesture, to sit and listen and it could really mean the world to someone. And one day you might be lonely and want someone to listen to you too. The drugstore lady who talked heaps sounded like she meant well 🙂

      I think you got to be careful talking to any stranger in general. Who knows if they are setting you up to fall into a trap of some sort. You can never be to careful to end the conversation and walk away. Hope all is well with settling in, Lani 🙂

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  19. Nice write, Mabel, about one of those social hazards that one is frequently up against. Introverts like us do not have a problem as we need more time with ourselves. But it is not so with the outgoing types who derive their energy by being with people. Some of them are indeed interesting and rewarding to engage with, whereas many are creeps weaponised to wear out people. All your tips can be selectively applied depending on the situation.

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    • Lovely to see you, Raj. You said it very well, that introverts like us need more time for ourselves. While it can be insightful and rewarding to talk to someone, talking on and on can wear us down. As you alluded to, some people also talk to us to take advantage of us, even if we know them for a while. Hope you are doing okay and staying safe over there, Raj.

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    • So lovely of you to read the comments, Jacqui. I am sure the commenters appreciate your time. I like how you say it, ‘conversation stopper’. That is a good one, pointing out the other person is in a hurry or heading somewhere…which they always are 😀

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  20. Wonderful to read you again, Mabel 🙂 This is such a perfect subject, as there is no easy solution and love the ideas (and comments) of how to deal with such situations. It can be frustrating when in a hurry, and then I get caught up in such a situation and I simply ride it out… I just have a hard time saying “no” or “sorry, I really have to go” when I should. These days, however, with the worry of Covid, it is kind of nice being drawn into a conversation even if it is a bit unwanted 🙂 Wishing you well, Mabel, and take care!

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    • It is wonderful to see you again, Randall 🙂 I was debating whether to share this piece or not, thinking that everyone is wanting and eager to talk with all that is happening in the world. As you said, it is nice being drawn into conversation. You are so polite to stay in conversations and ride them out. You probably get remembered for being a good friend who listens, and people remember you 🙂 Hope you are doing well and take care too.

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      • The timing of this post is perfect, because I think now people will be buzzing about having been use to not having to be too social, so there may be a bit more anxiety. I do enjoy listening to others, but the isolation of the past 18 months has made me less patient 🙂 Cheers to you!

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        • Quietness is something that can be so comforting and soothing. I think many people might come to realise that as they come out to socialise. It’s lovely to catch up with one another but at the same time it’s also lovely to spend some time by yourself. Sounds like you learn a lot over the last year, Randall. Take care 🙂

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    • That is a very good line, ‘I’ve gotta go’. Straight to the point and telling the truth. Hope it always works with your dad when you are caught in a long conversation with him 😀

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  21. Fun post as always Mabel. I must admit I don’t often have this problem. Here in our little microcosm most everyone is busy and very few will engage in an unwelcome conversation. There are one or two exceptions and we’ve all learned various ways to avoid them BEFORE the conversation would begin LOL!

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    • I like how you describe my post, fun. Thanks, Tina 😊 That is great you have a little microcosm where most keep busy keeping to themselves. Good that you know how to avoid getting stuck in conversations before they begin. You got a great skill 😊 Hope you are having a good week.

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    • Thank you so much. I so relate to that – being introverted and don’t know what to do sometimes when caught in a conversation. It can be hard hiding from the person talking to you 🙂

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  22. These are great tips, Mabel. I’ve run into a few people who tend to be a too chatty. It seems to always happen at the grocery store when I’m in a hurry. 🙂
    Have a good day! Lauren

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    • Thanks, Lauren. That is a good observation. I’ve also encountered chatty people at the grocery story. Hope you always manage to get away from chatty people at the grocery store, or have a quick chat with them. You have a good day too and enjoy the rest of your week 🙂

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  23. Such an excellent and concise post Mabel. Your methods are all great, and I’ve probably used a few myself. But I think averting our eyes from the person we’re talking to is very effective if someone gets the drift. I know if someone isn’t looking at me when I’m talking I’ll slowly ease myself away. Do no harm, but find a way when it’s time to go lol 🙂 ❤

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  24. These are all great ideas Mabel. I think the first one is the best for me. I like the idea of setting boundaries and having time limits on a conversation. Some people just don’t get the hint and that’s where sometimes other tactics have to be used. We can be firm and assertive without being rude. Hope you’re doing well.

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  25. Yessss appreciate these boundaries so much! I feel like it’s important to be able to advocate for oneself and to have specific strategies to do so, especially for people who may be accustomed to giving into the demands of others over their own needs and wants. Glad you mention cultural considerations too as you usually do.

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    • Yessss glad you liked setting boundaries when interacting with others. Interacting with others can be draining and not appropriate at all times. Meeting your needs is important – it’s a form of taking care of yourself and self-care. You have a good weekend, Thomas. Thank you for stopping by.

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  26. Hi Mabel, A nicely constructed set of tips. You can’t always rely on people reading body language or hearing statements that are closers. I find it amusing, albeit frustrating at times.
    I am often amazed at people who are chattering away endlessly on their phones…I guess I don’t have that much to say. 🤣 Thanks for another interesting post.

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    • Thanks, Jane. Yes, it can be frustrating when people keep chatting and not recognising that you want to leave. I’m not much of a talking-on-the-phone person, so like you, I am also amazed at people who can talk heaps on the phone (unless it’s with someone I haven’t talked to in ages). Hope you are doing well and have a good week ahead 🙂

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  27. Hi Mabel! Great post. I’ve struggled with this situation countless times. I’ve become better at setting boundaries and using the strategies you suggest but it’s still uncomfortable in some cases…and some people just don’t get the hint!

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    • Thanks, Caroline. That is great you are better at getting away from conversations these days. Agreed, it can be uncomfortable sometimes, especially if people just keep talking and don’t let you get a word in! It can be equally uncomfortable when the other person seems caught up in their own world. Sometimes you just got to try your best to get out of such conversations 😊

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    • Thanks, Donna. Being honest and setting boundaries can be really nice ways to tell someone you aren’t up for a long chat. Hopefully you don’t have to resort to walking away cold turkey to get out of a conversation. I am sure you are nice to talk to and if you want time to yourself, people understand 😊

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  28. Haha, I have a dictionary to cut off conversation, from “losing signal”, “disconnected” to “too loud, I cannot hear you”, “my fish is jumping out” 😛 But that works only on the phone/internet. Personal contact is a bit difficult. Depends on the situation, I might use Option 2 (Move along) for a few minutes and then find a reason to leave, or Option 7 (walk away). It’s certainly better to walk away than pouring the anger/frustration on another person.

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    • Hahaha, you got some funny ways to end a conversation, even if it’s more suitable over phone or online chatting. I like, ‘I cannot hear you’ on the phone – and you can make some pretend disconnecting noise too 😛 Agreed walking away is a good option if the other person won’t stop talking in person. It is then that they might get the hint 🙂

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      • Most people do get the hint when we walk away. But some doesn’t. I have an (talkative) acquantaince who stalks me, even to the bathroom’s door. Luckily, I didn’t have to see him on bad days 🙂

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        • That’s so funny that you got a talkative acquaintance who will stalk you everywhere until the bathroom door. It reminds of how sometimes people are also chatty when they are in a public bathroom behind closed doors 😀

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    • I like how you describe how some people can ‘rabbit on’. So true. I think if all else fails, the last option walking away would be the best option and then the other person might get the hint. Have a good week, Sylvia 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • I get people talking and talking to me for a quite a while, such as with friends and work. It happens quite a bit. So I keep in mind several ways to get out of a conversation for when I want to leave 😀

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  29. Lucky for me, here most of the time (more like all of the time) the only ones who would engage me in these sort of random chats are those sales persons in shopping malls. I only have 2 steps to deal with them: 1. Hands up to show them I’m not interested, 2. If they persist in following me, I would say “Leave me the fuck alone, will you?”, yes, with a proper “fuck” word in the sentence.

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    • The sales people in shopping malls can be annoying when you don’t want to buy anything. When you get firm with them, hope they get the message and leave you alone. If not, you can always repeat yourself, louder 😄

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  30. Just getting to this post now, after a month away from home.

    This is an interesting topic, from both sides. Interactions with other people can seem tricky. There’s so much information overload ‘out there’ these days! I’m afraid many of us have lost the value of human connection. We have become so busy with our devices and too much work, needs being so much greater than they were, say, 50 years ago. Suddenly whatever crosses our path tips us into overload, be it traffic or the needs of someone else. If I am the person wanting connection and I see the other person drifting energetically or physically, I feel deeply remorseful, as if I’ve violated their space and can’t make it better. Yet if someone is overloading me, I just want to escape, yet being ‘polite,’ I hear them out until I can’t sleep that night, I am so overstimulated!

    All this being said, I don’t have any solutions. You offer some valuable ones, for those who absolutely need to draw back from human interaction. As you know, I live remotely in the quiet, and without that, I would likely be quite insane. 😜

    Wishing you all the very best on this Samhain day! Enjoy whatever comes that is usually hidden from view 😉 xoxoxo

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    • It is an interesting topic, trying to get away from a conversation when you don’t want to talk. You are so right when you say, ‘Interactions with other people can seem tricky’ and also when many of us have lost the value of human connection. Not only are so many of us consumed with works and our devices, we are so distracted by them as well. Sometimes maybe we really are happier in such a state. Other times, maybe we get too engrossed and forget about the importance and satisfaction of in-person human connection and interaction.

      It must be hard when someone unloads emotionally on you and just aren’t in the mindframe for it. Understandably you would want to escape. Lovely to hear you live in a quiet place, Bela. Hope you enjoy the quiet and company you keep 😊 It was a lovely Samhain over here. Would do it all over again. Take care 😊

      Liked by 1 person

      • Glad to hear! 🤗
        And this: ‘Sometimes maybe we really are happier in such a state.’
        You have a point here.
        Late yesterday afternoon, we went to visit a dying friend. Old Hispanic family, many generations here in these mountains. His death will literally mean the end of an era here. Much tragedy in this family. Loving hearts, but lots of addictions, alcohol in the elders (including him), heroin in the youth. Very sad. I massaged the man’s swollen legs as family streamed in and out. We have lived here only a year, though they know us better than most and there is trust and genuine affection. Still, by the time we left 2 hours later, I was unable to ‘dump’ the impressions both visual and kinesthetic. Had a hard time sleeping.
        We intuitive introverts feel things so deeply.
        And yet we will visit again and again, his wife of over 50 yrs is as in need of grounded support, as he is of peace in his passing.
        That is what is happening in the middle of nowhere.
        I can only imagine how blown out i would feel in a city. And totally understand how others must do what it takes to remain sane.
        Love to you, Mabel. ❤️

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  31. I haven’t thought much about this. I probably would walk away or smile politely, then look ahead. These days with covid, some people just might want idle chat for a few minutes. If it’s in public place, it’s ok. We are ourselves have to be prepared to be rejected/ignored also. It works both ways.

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    • Agreed. These days after being in lockdown for so long, people are probably more inclined to chat with each other in person for a bit longer. Then again, some people might prefer to not go back to pre-Covid, constant chit-chat normal life. So maybe they will have some ideas on getting away from a conversation. If I really have to or want to go, I’ll just excuse myself, say goodbye and walk away.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Agreed. These days after being in lockdown for so long, people are probably more inclined to chat with each other in person for a bit longer. Then again, some people might prefer to not go back to pre-Covid, constant chit-chat normal life. So maybe they will have some ideas on getting away from a conversation. If I really have to or want to go, I’ll just excuse myself, say goodbye and walk away.

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  32. I use the phone one all the time, Mabel. Also, pre-pandemic, I used to take out a hanky and cough a lot into it, saying I needed to go and get a drink of water. That worked well, although people may not want to talk to you in today’s world if they see you coughing a lot.

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    • That is a very clever way to excuse yourself pre-pandemic, with the hanky and a bit of a cough. It could even be something you pull off while talking to someone over the phone. Agreed, these days it may not be the best way to exit a conversation. Or maybe it still is, just tone down the coughing as much as possible 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Mabel, this is such a fascinating topic, so much is hidden in the body of conversation. It is not an easy skill to develop and doing so with strangers become even more challenging. There is an art and we need confidence to initiate a conversation but the bigger task is maintaining it and doing so without infringing into one’s sensitive matter. We need knowledge on the subject but it is the skill to navigate that matters the most.

    We really don’t, so many things depend on the culture we are grow up and also the type of personality we are, the extrovert just don’t think too much on these things, they start talking and if things are not moving they move ahead, not much emotion attached either. On the other introverts think a lot and take time to get into any such conversation with a stranger but with those they know and trust, they are the best persons to talk. It is always good to have some conversation with stranger while we are on a travel as we get to know so many different aspects, the more different people we meet and talk, the more different perspectives we have for us. Something that makes us enriched with rich thoughts and a respository of nunaced perspective.

    More so, having meaningful conversation is what makes all the difference, given the truncated span of attention now-a-days we have. we pay so little attention to building good meaningful conversation, we are on the go and what’s next, the current thing gets ignored or discounted. Some of us realize we are making a mistake but the other side is not ready to reconcile, we can do so much and not farther. We are all in a hurry to get there, we really don’t know where that there is, communication has become so mechanical and there is no emotion and no patience to stay and listen.

    Hope all well Mabel, long time. Always a pleasure to be hear. Take Care!!!

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    • This was such reflective, poetic reading of my post, Nihar. Love it when you say there is ‘so much (hidden) in the body of conversation’. For some of us, it is not easy talking to someone in the first place and you could even get nervous just seeing someone approach you to have a chat. Maintaining a conversation is like trying to keep your personal boundaries and try not to infringe on someone’s space. You are right – knowledge on the subject helps to carry a conversation but skill is what is needed for both people talking to each other to feel comfortable chatting.

      So true extroverts don’t usually think much about not talking to someone, and more often than not start talking right way. Some of them do mean really well. Other times, introverts find this uncomfortable at this sudden conversation and feel the need to retreat. Agreed, making the effort to talk to people (as opposed to keeping to yourself) while on travels can be such an enriching experience. You learn so much about local and local culture that way, and these conversations will probably be the conversations you will remember for a long time.

      Yes, many of us have a ‘truncated span of attention now-a-days’ and communication has become so mechanical as you put it so aptly. It’s partly because we are so distracted by screens in front of us, going from one thing to another in a matter or minutes or seconds. We just want to get the conversation over and done with and on to something else. While I do think some of us may really need space, making an exception now and then for a conversation could be a very meaningful conversation for the soul.

      It has been a while. Lovely to see you, Nihar. Hope all is well over there with you. Take care 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • Indeed Mabel, everything today is in a jiffy and every relationship is accounted for in our books of life, literally so time is money, and we look at why should we being spending time with someone where there is no tangible or financial return.

        Today, relationship and conversation have become a victim of commercialisation and materialism, nothing is spared from our time value of money or what’s the deal or what do we get, we have stopped seeing things from pure relationship and friendship or for that matter value the quality time for having a good conversation. Unfortunate though but that is true, and its the reality we have to face, most of us may not want that way but it is a vicious cycle and we are all trapped, not knowing how to liberate us from such a conundrum.

        The power of conversation defines the way we nurture our relationship, and a meaningful conversation empowers such relationship whether in family or as friends. It needs meeting of mind and having a space to share and engage with thoughts that are both thought provoking and backed by compassion and care, without having the right emotion in place such relationhip can go so far and not farther. We keep emphasizing on rational thoughts and how much we debate on having a rational bent of mind but we miss the essence as emotion plays a significant part and we just cannot keep it apart, but we do so, and try to get knotted in the maze of logic and rational mode of thinking. These are required in certain cases and certainly in business and professional matters but when it comes to personal and general things we need to give emotion its due where it deserve to be included, excluding takes the sense out of the essence…we miss the main plot for the side character.

        So much more we can deliberate on this matter as communication today has become so vital for how we manage and make things happen around us and how we lead a much more meaningful life, art of communication, there is a role played by philosophy, both art and philosophy has a much greater role to play in the thick and thin of science and technology that is dominating and driving everything we do…we need to balance things out.

        As always such a lovely feeling to be here and have our usual animated debate, thanks so much Mabel. Take good care of yourself…:D

        Like

        • So agree when you say that ‘relationship and conversation have become a victim of commercialisation and materialism.’ It is true and many don’t value the essence of time. Giving someone your time and attention is such a valuable, meaningful gesture but so many choose to see such a gesture as a transaction to be gained from. It is indeed a viscious cycle where only so few of us see what is really going on and watch on helplessly.

          A meaningful conversation, even if it’s just for a few minutes, can be both empowering and even a life changing moment. It’s conversation that encourages us to think, see things from different perspectives and see the world in a totally new way. A meaningful conversation also encourages us to reflect upon our life, actions and habits and spur us to make changes. It is mind and emotion coming together – and yes, emotion plays a part in shaping who we are and how we grow. Rational mode of thinking is important but so is thinking creatively and emotionally. And some things can only be felt. Emotion is what makes a conversation and connection meaningful, personal and one that we will remember.

          Art and philosophy certainly have a big role in this world. It’s everywhere and everything that we do, facilitated by the beauty of genuine communication and conversation, alongside the fascination of science and technology.

          It’s a pleasure to have you here, Nihar. You are always welcomed here. Love chatting with you. Hope your week is going well 😀

          Liked by 1 person

          • Indeed Mabel, we are all living in a new economy termed as “Attention Economy” where we are paying for our attention and there are these big companies literally minting money from our attention, but the unfortunate part is that we have forgotten to pay attention to things that matter the most to us, and we are everywhere virtually, and in reality we are nowhere.

            We keep shifting, hopping and changing not sticking to things and staying on course, there are plethora of distraction out there to keep us busy for doing something but getting nowhere.

            We don’t spend time with others, top of it not any quality time but the bigger problem is that we don’t spend time with our own self, we don’t talk and conversations are out of picture, we are all digitally hooked and getting ourselves off the hook is such a herculean task, and we are all struggling to get our acts together, though we are all together in this battle but we are all fighting our own lonely war.

            All well here Mabel, hope everything is fine at your end. Lovely exhanging such beautiful thoughts. Take Care!!! 😀

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            • Spot on, Nihar. We are indeed living in the Attention Economy where we are constantly distracted by what’s trendy or the supposed next big thing which a lot is material. There’s only so much we can get out of chasing the next thing or materiality. What’s important and what actually matters tends to be right in front of us right now in the pressent. ‘we are everywhere virtually, and in reality we are nowhere.’ Beautiful phrase from you Nihar and you summed up Why some of us feel empty even when we are so busy.

              Distraction keeps us busy. It keeps us working and preoccupied but not necessarily going where which makes us happy and most fulfilled.

              Quality time and quality conversation with others is so important. And yes, spending time with ourselves and having conversations wiht our own self is equally important – and the lack of that leads to a lonely war as you mentioned. It’s important to take time out for ourselves, talk to ourselves and get to know ourselves and what matters to us, and then we can have more meaningful conversations with others.

              Busy here with book writing 😀 Hope it was a good weekend for you, Nihar. Have a good week 😀

              Liked by 1 person

              • Indeed Mabel, we are all going through that critical phase of transition from the physcial world to that of the virtual world…once virtual reality and augmented reality is in full swing we will be literally transported. We really don’t know how to deal with such a transitory phase of our life, and the world at large is learning. There are excitement about new things and there are challenges, we have to balance it out and grab the window of opportunities that comes our way…

                Great to hear that you are writing a book, it will be great success, and there can’t be much more fulfilling exercise than completing and publishing a book, such a joy to go through that journey. We literally share a part of our personality as if we are physically being part of that book…looking forward to it.
                Wishing you lot of success Mabel and have a lovely week ahead. 😀

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                • It will be interesting to see how we connect when we all shift ever more so to a digital, and higher consciousness, world. It indeed will be a massive shift in the way we live our lives but it is the way forward. Maybe it will be the norm to talk to others virtually – and we’d still have our ways to get out of such conversations when we feel the need.

                  Thanks, Nihar. Writing the book has been such a journey. I might share a bit of my experience writing the book in the next blog post. Drafting a book is one thing, editing it is another and publishing a book is a whole other realm. Looking forward to visiting yours soon. Hope all is well with you 😀

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • Indeed exciting time ahead, the virtual space is going to literally change our ways of working and living…fingers crossed as we really don’t know what is instored for us.

                    There can no better way to self discovery than writing a book, I agree Mabel, writing is just one part of the grand project, these editing and marketing is such an important aspect just get eclisped but makes all the difference…

                    Take care and have a lovely week ahead. 😀

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                    • This virtual space will continue to evolve over time, and interactions will evolve over time too. So exciting to see how we may talk to each other in the future. Maybe travel will be so much more faster and we can travel more and have so many diverse conversations.

                      Writing is indeed a grand project. I am very excited for my book to come together and eventually see the light of day. Take care 😀

                      Liked by 1 person

                    • Indeed Mabel, exciting time ahead, so much more to explore and so much more to do, lets open our mind and heart, enjoy the joy of exploring and experimenting with these new things…
                      Wishing you a grand success for the book project, just enjoy the journey…take care 😀

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                    • Keep exploring, and find and experiment with new things. There is no limits to where we can go with someone or our passions. The book writing journey will be a long journey…and it’s getting there. You take care too. Hope you have a good day 😀

                      Liked by 1 person

  34. This is really interesting read and I got some really good tips too. I normally use one trick which I would like to share here. If I get bored of talking to someone or irritated, I text my bestie/my brother to call me immediately. Normally they call and I take excuse to pick the call and never return 😄😄😄 This is tried and tasted trick and I taught many people also.
    Thanks for sharing great tips, keep smiling ☺️☺️☺️

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