While random video chatting can be a terrific way for you to socialize without the usual pressures of mixing with strangers, it’s still possible for things to get a little screwy sometimes. If this keeps happening and it’s preventing you from enjoying the random chats, don’t worry – assistance is on its way!
Even if it’s just an occasional occurrence, the information below could help you identify the problem and move forward like a pro. If you’re on a platform like Camsurf, you don’t want to worry about how your chats are going; you just want to have fun and meet new people, just like everyone else seems to be doing. Or are they?
This brings us to the first tip:
Remind yourself that you aren’t the only awkward person on the chat
Time for a bit of pop psychology. Statistically speaking, most of your chat partners have probably run into people who are even more awkward than you are.
In fact, you may have barely even registered as someone who could stand to improve their social skills.
Just imagine yourself from their perspective: would you get upset or annoyed if your chat partner told a corny joke that probably sounded better in their head? Probably not.
Your chat partner may not have even noticed a laugh that’s a little too high-pitched, excessive hair-stroking, or the fact that you keep adding “you know?” or “right?” to the end of every sentence. You may be keeping score, but it’s doubtful that they are.
Instead of supplying all the conversation, ask some questions and let your chat partner do the talking
Sometimes the problem could be that you’re trying a little too hard – there’s nothing that says “awkward” like nervous rambling. If you find yourself doing just that, it’s never too late to pause, take a deep breath, and ask a simple question to get your chat partner talking instead.
Pausing doesn’t just give you a break; it also balances out the conversation a bit and shows the other person that you’re interested in hearing what they have to say.
Remember that even if a chat started a little cringy, your chat partner would remember what happened last – not how everything started.
If you feel like the whole thing is a mess, you don’t necessarily have to write the entire conversation off as a flop. Instead, see if you can do a mini reset and slow the pace down to something you can both handle.
Plan ahead for topics you want to discuss
A significant factor in aimless rambling is having no clue what to chat about. This might seem like an obvious thing to point out, but that’s also where the answer lies: if you have something to talk about, you aren’t as likely to ramble.
Just have a couple of topics ready to throw out there whenever you sense a lull in the conversation, and those pauses won’t turn into awkward silences. This probably won’t affect the spontaneity of the chats, either.
After all, it’s not like you’re planning out entire conversations, and you can’t predict what your chat partner will say. It’s just a simple strategy to prevent some slightly embarrassing moments.
Be more selective about your chat partners
“It’s not me; it’s you.”
Could this really be the case? We’ve assumed that you are the cause of the awkwardness, but what if that’s an unfair assumption? The fact is, you aren’t going to be compatible with every chat partner.
However, if you characterize yourself as socially inept, you might be blaming every mismatched chat on yourself when it would never have worked anyway.
This is a little harder to be objective about, but once you start seeing the signs, you’ll know how to recognize them.
Maybe it’s time for you to be a little easier on yourself and to turn a bit of scrutiny onto your chat partners. Not that it’s their fault; if it’s a simple issue of clashing personalities, there isn’t anything that either of you can do. Except, of course, move onto the next chat.
Check your lighting and general setup
Have you ever had that one friend who gets a flashy manicure and suddenly develops an entirely new personality? Part of how we act depends on how we see ourselves, and that applies to what you see in your viewfinder as you random video chat.
If your lighting is too dim, bright, direct, or fluorescent, you’re playing with the cards stacked against you. In other words, good lighting is crucial.
Second to lighting, but still, something that’s worth your attention is the background.
If it’s messy or disorganized, you could end up competing with a pile of laundry for your chat partner’s attention – and nobody wants to do that.
If everything else fails, there’s no shame in just starting a new chat
There’s no perfect diagnostic approach to tell why some chats go wrong and can’t be set right again; the best you can do is remember that it can’t be perfect every time and keep going.
Plus, you have random video chat etiquette on your side (if there is such a thing): it’s common practice for chats to be ended suddenly by people who just aren’t feeling it.
Whether you’re bored, annoyed, or abashed by a perceived failure to be a brilliant conversationalist, feel free to end your current chat and start over with a new chat partner. It’s a foolproof solution, and you’re the only one who can make you feel bad about it – so just do it!
Hopefully, some of these tips will help you out if you ever find yourself in a tight spot mid-chat. Above all, keep in mind that random video chatting is supposed to be fun, so don’t overthink it. Just stop worrying and see what happens!