I Don’t Know What To Say – What To Do When Your Mind Goes Blank During Conversation - Social Anxiety Advice

I Don’t Know What To Say – What To Do When Your Mind Goes Blank During Conversation

It happens to everyone. We all run out of words to say sometimes, however when you have social anxiety this happens more often than not. Your mind goes blank and you just can’t come up with anything smart to say.

No matter how much effort you put into it, you just can’t come up with anything worth saying.

It’s not that you’re not trying. It just doesn’t happen.

And once you remove yourself from that social situation, your mind starts working again and you’re able to come up with so many things you could have said but you didn’t.

Or sometimes you do come up with something to say while you’re still having a conversation, but it’s still too late because the conversation has already taken a different path and what you have to say simply isn’t relevant anymore.

This inability to have a conversation in real time can often get you misunderstood.

Sometimes you might even be called quiet or boring.

It’s definitely not something that would make you feel more confident and talkative. It just doesn’t. It only makes you more aware of your problem.

If this is something that happens to you a lot, you will appreciate this post because I’m about to show you what to do when your mind goes blank during conversation.

So what is the solution?

What Can You Do When You Have Nothing To Say?

First you need to understand why this happens, because understanding the reasons can help you change the way you behave in social situations.

You see, when you have social anxiety, your mind usually goes blank because you have some sort of fear that mentally paralyzes you.

This fear is usually fear of embarrassing yourself in front of other people, especially people you like or people you don’t know that well and you don’t feel too comfortable around. It’s a fear of losing your face.

fear of embarrassment and not knowing what to say

And there are many ways you can embarrass yourself.

You can say something stupid or something so out of context that they might think you’re weird.

You can say something that will reveal to them that you have no knowledge on the topic that is being discussed.

What you say might also reveal that you have no experience in this area and this could show your lack of social life. For example, the group might be discussing relationships and you’ve never been in one. And when you say something unbelievable because you lack experience, they might see right through you.

Basically, you’re being afraid of saying something embarrassing and that makes your mind go blank during conversations.

The solution to this problem lies in realizing that we all say stupid things or things that are out of context.

We all make mistakes.

Often, these mistakes get by completely unnoticed.

Why?

Because you’re not the only one who’s thinking about what to say next.

Other people also spend a lot of their time in their own heads, thinking about what to say in response to what other people are saying.

And these people often miss the mistakes that you make.

Now what about those people that are present and do notice that you’ve said something that’s out of context?

Most of them don’t really care if you make a mistake.

Most grownups that you talk to want you to feel good around them because if you’re at ease, they can be to and the conversation can flow naturally.

conversation flows

So even when they notice that you’ve made a mistake, they don’t make a big deal out of it.

Most likely they won’t say a thing about it.

But what about those times when they do mention it?

Well, in this case just smile and say, “That was funny.”

Show that you have a sense of humor and that you feel confident in your skin even when you make mistakes.

People who live their lives fully make lots of mistakes. They make them all the time because they know that’s a part of life. It’s a way of learning new skills and behaviors. It’s a way of learning what doesn’t work which in return makes it easier to find out what does work.

That’s why people who make lots of mistakes are so successful.

So, allow yourself to make mistakes.

Allow yourself to say whatever comes up in your mind.

Allow yourself to say something stupid once in a while.

You’ll notice that it won’t really damage your reputation. It won’t lower your status among other people. However, it will help you improve your social skills.

Every mistake that you make helps you hone your skills and makes you a better conversationalist, as long as you’re willing to learn from your mistakes.

And allowing yourself to make mistakes and say things out of context will help you get more relaxed around other people.

You see, when you don’t care about making occasional “mistake”, you worry less and you become more calm and collected. Consequently, your conversations become more natural and your mind goes blank less often.

But What If This Doesn’t Help?

What if being relaxed and comfortable around other people still doesn’t help and you still can’t come up with anything smart or interesting to say?

Well, social anxiety usually prevents you from living your life fully. It prevents you from having interesting hobbies that involve other people; hobbies that are worth talking about and would make you more interesting as a person.

Not having “cool” hobbies and an interesting life makes you feel like you’re not an interesting person. Consequently, you have nothing to talk about. Even when you’re relaxed around other people, you still have nothing interesting to say.

This can be a real problem, but the good news is that there’s a pretty simple solutions for this problem.

Simply put, become genuinely interested in other people and what they have to say.

Even when they talk about something that you have no interest in right now, make it an effort and listen closely.

Become acquainted with that subject.

If you really give it a try, you might actually become interested in that thing yourself. It might not happen right away, but it might happen some day.

However, the key is in soaking up the knowledge you can acquire through other people by listening to what they have to say.

Knowledge is not only science or philosophy or anything else that could be studied on college.

Everything you learn in life is knowledge and helps you become more interesting person.

You see, when there’s something that you’re not interested in right now and you pay attention anyway, you gain some knowledge and expertise on that topic.

So, next time that you talk to someone about that same topic you’re not clueless anymore. You can have a perfectly fine conversation without awkward pauses just because you’ve paid attention in the past and you’ve been genuinely interested in what other people have to say.

So ask questions and pay attention.

Over time you’ll gain insights in so many different topics that you’ll find talking with other people a real pleasure.

You just need to get started and your social skills will improve.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 6 comments
Laura

I know this feeling very well. It feels like my brain just shuts off around people and then turns back on when I’m alone. I know I’m capable of being an interesting person but I just have trouble expressing myself.

Reply
    Andre Sossi

    Hey Laura, I’m sure you can improve your social skills a lot. You just need to show your interest in other people and talk. The more conversations you’ll have, the more experienced you’ll get. Consequently, you’ll also get better at expressing yourself.

    Reply
Frank Benson

I always have issues thinking of things to say and I notice it even more when I’m with more than one person. When it’s me and only one other person, I feel sort of obliged to talk, so I say stuff even if I’m not so sure about it. But as soon as there’s one more person involved I really hold back.

But I don’t really mind when people say I’m quiet. At least they’re trying to involve me in the conversation.

Reply
    Andre Sossi

    You’re right Frank. People usually don’t want to hurt you when they ask you why you’re so quiet. They just want you to be a part of the conversation. Usually they value your input. If they didn’t, they wouldn’t ask. 🙂

    Reply
Adejumoke oyinlola

It’s just like frank said. I find it easier to make a conversation with one person especially if it’s in a noisy environment. But soon as it gets quiet and I feel like everyone can hear what I’m saying I get anxious. Even though I’m smart, I never answer questions in class even when I know I have the correct answers. And most times I hate that it makes people think I’m pompous.

Reply
    Andre Sossi

    Hey Adejumoke… That’s exactly what social anxiety does to you. It makes you feel like you’re under the spotlight and if you were to speak up it would only add more light on you and you’d feel like every is judging you. And we all know that this fear is irrational and yet it seems so hard to shake it off. Now in reality it’s not that hard to replace the limiting beliefs that make you feel this way. It’s just that most people don’t know how to do it…. after all, most get advice from people who never suffered from social anxiety and so the advice usually isn’t any good.

    Reply

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