How to Avoid Being Talkative

Being talkative is a real issue that can often bring down social relationships. Whether you're talkative because you always have a story to tell, to having a psychological fear of rejection, here's how to avoid being talkative.


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    Avoid personal references - "I", "me", "my", and personal experiences are usually boring to others and can keep you going for a long time. This is a craving that can turn into a bad habit, which is hard to take down. Only (occasionally) throw in short stories that pertain to the topic at hand.
    • If you do tell a story, make sure it's funny. If a person is bored or has no reaction to the story, they (honestly) probably think the words were wasted time and/or space.
    • People subconsciously love to talk about themselves. The less you do it, the less you'll want to do it. Talk about others instead.
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    Ask questions and find out information. If you do bring something up about yourself, ask a question or find information from the other person(s) perspective so that it doesn't seem like a waste of time. You may also be approached with something that seems boring to you, which will make you want to ask questions less.
    • For the final sentence, you might think this will make you just talk about yourself and not ask others. Instead, pair questions and taking interest in others with talking. Make it your goal to talk with people and not at them.
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    Put yourself in their shoes. Think about how you would feel talking to yourself. If you're bored, annoyed, bothered, tired, or out of interest, take this into consideration. You'll know what you need to fix and/or work on. If others have admitted to feeling bored or careless but you see nothing wrong, you may be (slightly) self-absorbed and should see that as something to work on.
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    Get an opinion. Grab one or some very close friends and ask them honestly if you're too talkative. Tell them you want 100% truth on their opinion and that you can definitely handle anything they have to say. Tell them you're doing it not for personal benefit, but for their benefit too, so they don't have to deal with these issues and even help you fix them.
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    There are simple rules that you should keep in mind before and when speaking. It's a basically a guide to when to keep your mouth shut. Remember to stop speaking if the following happens:
    • If they're not paying attention or talking to someone else
    • If the story is a long one and nobody asked to hear it
    • If you got the story from the internet
    • If you're talking about your dreams or work
    • The person seems bored or uninterested
    • The person is looking at their phone, tablet, or computer
    • The person is working
    • You're talking too fast
    • You're the only one laughing


  • "Think before you speak" is a fantastic moral to keep with you. Oftentimes people are talkative because they speak whatever comes to mind. Really assess what you're about to say before it comes out.
  • Don't make your conversation self centric, instead try to speak about something of common interest .
  • Give a person a full 3-5 seconds after they stop speaking before you begin. They may not be finished.
  • Never try to prove your superiority in your conversation, this may irritate others.
  • Talk to a friend. Ask a close friend if they honestly think you are self-centered, talkative, arrogant, or even obnoxious/annoying. Make sure they know you want the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
  • Focus on them for a while. Breathe and listen.


  • Don't feel the need to constantly fill dead space. If nobody's talking, that's just fine! Maybe it's just not the appropriate time to bring anything up.
  • Take a personality quiz at to determine whether or not your talkativeness is because of a psychological personality disorder - this is nothing to be afraid of, but disorders that show up positive should be assessed by characteristics.
    • You may need to seek professional help.

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Categories: Conversation Skills | Relationships