Often, we conduct a conversation with the sole purpose of simply keeping it going, rather than trying to make it especially interesting. The result is that it often becomes boring and uncomfortable.
A well-formulated question can make a person tell you a story. There’s no way they can answer it in the standard way.
Break the mirror
When a conversation is going badly, an amusing situation often develops which is sometimes referred to as “the mirror.” In order to seem polite, we often ask our conversation partner standard questions, repeat the words they use, or just agree with everything they say. As a result, we lose any enjoyment we might get from the conversation.
When we “break the mirror,” something special appears in the conversation, and it immediately ceases to be boring.
Play around with the expected answer
Another great way to break out of a boring conversation is to avoid giving the expected answer.
A non-standard answer to a question won’t drive people away from you. In fact, it will draw them in because you’ll seem different to others. Push the conversation forward, pose unusual questions, and offer unusual answers. That way, everyone around you will be fascinated.
Source Christopher Colin, “What to Talk About”