21 Jul Stranger Encounters – How to Meet People
“Stranger Encounters” is a segment on how I met someone new recently. Take what you like from my experience to learn how to meet people, in real life.
July 20th, 2022 at Mt. Nelson Athletic Park, Invermere, BC
On this morning in Invermere, British Columbia, I met David, his wife Jennie, and their children in the park pictured above. I enjoyed watching the family play a game of Ultimate Frisbee while having my morning coffee on a park bench. It was fun to witness this family play together and to hear the parents competitive sides come out. I used to play Ultimate Frisbee so that was the excuse that I used to say hello to them.
I approached them by saying, “Hello. I just wanted to say that I enjoyed seeing you play Ultimate Frisbee because I used to play Ultimate.”
Notice how I didn’t sit and try to scheme something clever to say, but rather, I pretty much just explained what I observed as my ice-breaker. I did consider that they might not want to hear from me – a total stranger – but I know from experience and from the research that I likely wouldn’t get rejected.
And this lead into a really enjoyable conversation.
They shared how as parents they are happy to play two-on-two Ultimate with two of their three children.
We also talked about van-camping as my partner and I had slept in our camperized van on a random street the night before. Their family is considering doing so in the future as well so David in particular had lots of questions for me. On this subject, we had what I call an “Information Gift-Exchange”. You can read about this concept in the Talk2MorePeople book.
I gave David a Talk2MorePeople sticker that has my contact information on the back. He told me a story about how he met one of his best friends eight years ago while walking with his young daughter. In that instance he invited the stranger over to his house for a barbeque and they have become lifelong friends.
Often when I meet new people, I invite them to remain in contact with me by giving them a sticker. When I do this, it’s always so enjoyable to hear how often people share their stories with me about how meeting a stranger once changed their lives.
I’m grateful for this enjoyable conversation and to have met them. It brightened up my already sunny morning. You can use your simple observations to connect with new people and you may very well be surprised just how well those conversations can go.