Last week you learned why you might find it hard to leave a conversation (if you missed it, read part one here). This revolved around your false assumptions about how the other person might feel. Hopefully, I have convinced you to look at it in a different way. Today, I will share with you the exact steps you need to take to leave a conversation. If you’ve already tried switching the subject to something that you find more interesting, and still no luck, then do the following:
- Wait for a pause in the conversation.
- Give them a big smile
- Say, ‘It was nice speaking with, but…’. And add one of the following:
‘I just saw someone I need to speak with’.
‘I just have to refill my drink’.
‘I must check to see if there is anything interesting at the buffet’.
‘I’m just going to check on my friend’.
‘I need to go over and thank the hostess’.
Honestly, it doesn’t really matter what you say. When you are done with the conversation, you can leave. It’s as simple as that.
If you think saying any of these would be ‘rude’, you are going back to your old way of thinking about graceful exits. Change it around: would you mind if someone said any of these to you and then made a graceful exit? Probably not.
If you *would* mind if anyone said these things to you, and then left, then this is good news! It means that the problem is with you and not them. It can be changed. (As you can only change yourself and not others).
Whether it’s saying: ‘It was lovely chatting with you. Enjoy your evening,’ or ‘Oh, please excuse me, I just see someone who I really must say hi to,’ the graceful exit is incredibly easy. It’s our misguided emotions that makes us think it’s so difficult.