The Surprising Benefits of Talking to Strangers | Nick Epley [Republish]

Originally published as Why Talking To Strangers Is Actually Good For Your Wellbeing | Nick Epley

Embark on a journey of rediscovery as we revisit an episode that’s sure to reignite your passion for meaningful connections. Join us as we delve into the timeless wisdom of Nick Epley, whose insights continue to resonate with listeners old and new.

Do you strike up a conversation with a stranger on a plane or while waiting in line? If you don’t already, you will after listening to Nick Epley in this episode. Nick talks through his extensive research about talking to people we encounter and how it actually boosts our wellbeing.

While many of us may default to surface-level exchanges, Nick challenges us to embrace the depths of genuine connection. But let’s not forget the elephant in the room – initiating these conversations can be a daunting task. Fear not! Nick equips us with the tools to overcome our hesitations and dive headfirst into meaningful dialogue.

Nick Epley is the John Templeton Keller Professor of Behavior Science and Director of the Center for Decision Research at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. With his unparalleled expertise in social cognition, Nick sheds light on why understanding one another is often easier said than done. Nick wrote the book Mindwise: Why We Misunderstand What Others Think, Believe, Feel, and Want and through its pages, Nick invites us to peer into the inner workings of the human mind.

As always, hosts Kurt and Tim end the show with a Grooving Session, distilling the essence of our conversation into actionable insights. But if there is just one thing you take away from this episode, dear listeners, is never hesitant to seize the opportunity to pay a compliment.

© 2024 Behavioral Grooves


[3:40] Welcome and speed round questions.

[4:57] Why it’s better to have a deep and meaningful conversation with a stranger?

[7:18] Why are we reluctant to talk to strangers about something meaningful?

[13:46] Why did Nick start studying undersociality?

[21:06] What happens when strangers talk on a train?

[29:33] How do you start a conversation with a stranger?

[33:20] The benefits of a compliment.

[39:21] Nick’s work in the future.

[43:35] The mind-blowing way to get someone else’s perspective?

[47:49] What music influences Nick.

[51:24] Grooving Session with Kurt and Tim discussing what we learned from Nick Epley.

© 2024 Behavioral Grooves

Other Episodes for Grooving 

Episode 220 – How Do You Become Influential? Jon Levy Reveals His Surprising Secrets

Episode 412 – Ask the Right Question, Get the Best Answer | Jeff Wetzler