How to Pretend to Be Interested in a Conversation

Someone is talking to you about a really boring topic, and you are bored out of your mind. This just might help you.


  1. 1
    Don't take your eyes off the speaker. Maintaining eye contact makes them think that you are paying attention. If you look away, they'll suspect that you don't care.
  2. 2
    Listen occasionally. Every now and then listen to a couple of sentences, in case they ask you if you know what they're saying.
    • Be aware! If the person suspects you've switched off, there is a risk of them saying something completely random or stupid, just to see if you're listening.
  3. 3
    Add side questions and comments. It makes it seem like you are interested, and care enough about the person talking. Nod, say "uh huh", and "oh really" now and then.
  4. 4
    Don't be rude or ask stupid questions. Don't respond to something terrible they've just said with a comment like, "Well that's lovely."
  5. 5
    Explain that you need to go. Say that you'd love to hear more but not just now, as you have an appointment to get to on time. Just be nice about it and you will avoid hurting their feelings. It's quite possible you'll be more willing to listen another time.
  6. 6
    Make more effort in future. Connecting with others is part of what humans do. It's fine to limit the amount of connecting you do but when you are with someone, try to stay alert and interested. Keep the conversation to a minimum, so that what you do give of yourself is genuine.


  • If you are someone who innately writhes during small talk, limit the occasions during which you're confronted with it and learn quick exit strategies that allow you break off conversations kindly.


  • If someone constantly bores you, it may be because they're complaining, whining or obsessing. If this is the case, it is okay to gently point out that what they're saying isn't going to change the thing they want done and that maybe there are some solutions both of you could work on to fix things.

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Categories: Conversation Skills