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5 Group Icebreakers to Make Socializing Less Stressful

Reaching out is a whole lot easier when you have a few tricks up your sleeve, like knowing a few conversation starters. But what about getting together in a group?

Having some icebreaker questions at the ready can help you sharpen your social skills and boost your confidence in group settings. If you’re worried you won’t know what to say, these icebreakers can also help you — and the people you’re connecting with — experience fewer gaps in conversation.

It may feel strange to start a conversation, but acknowledging this is a surefire way to put everyone at ease.

Try saying something like, “I don’t know about you, but my social skills are a bit rusty. How about some icebreakers to get us talking? I have one in mind we could try.”

Read on to discover simple ways you can break the ice — and build connections — at your next group gathering.

  • Ask “Getting to Know You” Questions

    After you’ve introduced yourself (or been introduced by someone else) at an event, repeat the other person’s name right away to help you remember it. “It’s a pleasure to meet you, Joe. So tell me…” and ask one of the questions below:

    • Where did you grow up?
    • If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you be?
    • What was the first album you ever bought?
    • Are you a beach or mountains type of person?
    • What is your favorite food or type of cuisine?

    Making eye contact, paraphrasing what’s being said, and avoiding the urge to interrupt are just a few of the active listening skills you can use to begin to build a connection.

  • Use Fun Questions to Deepen Connections

    Icebreakers don’t just get conversations moving; they also help foster an atmosphere for building a connected community. At your next volunteer or co-worker meeting, go around the
    room (whether virtual or in-person) and ask each person to answer one of the following questions.

    • What three items would you bring with you if you were going to be stranded on a desert island and why?
    • If you could have any superpower what would it be and why?
    • What famous person do people say you look like?
    • If you could have any celebrity over for dinner, who would it be and why?
    • What song best describes your life right now?

    If you have regular meetings with a volunteer, interest, or work group, kick off each week with a different question to keep the connections growing. Check out 100 Best Icebreaker Questions in Ranking Order for more questions you can try.

  • Play a Game of
    “Would You Rather”

    Would You Rather is an icebreaker game known for strengthening connections with people you’ve just met as well as with people you’ve known for a while. To play, take turns going around the room and ask each person one of these questions:

    • Would you rather only have summer or winter for the rest of your life?
    • Would you rather go on a hike or see a movie?
    • Would you rather never use social media sites and apps again, or never watch another movie or TV show?
    • Would you rather give up sweets or salty snacks?
    • Would you rather spend a week in the forest or a night in a real haunted house?

    Check out 250 Best ‘Would You Rather’ Questions To Learn More About Friends Than You Ever Expected for more creative questions.

  • Share Two Truths and a Lie

    This classic icebreaker game is another fun way to get to know friends, family, or people you just met on a deeper level. To play, each person takes a turn sharing three statements about themselves: two of the statements are true and one is false. Next, the other players try to guess which is the lie by asking questions.Here’s an example:

    “I’m from Boston, I’m allergic to shellfish, and I love Brussels sprouts.”

    The lie was “I’m allergic to shellfish.”

    Find more hints for playing — like keeping your statements short and sweet — from Parade Magazine.

  • Host Trivia Over Video Chat

    If you’re looking for a remote icebreaker game, playing a trivia game is a fun way to build connections. Sign up for a free account on Kahoot or Quizwitz to play a variety of trivia games.To run this remotely, you’ll want to share your screen with your team. Everyone will need to have a separate device to use so they can enter the game and submit their answers.

    To host virtual trivia, try one of these free video apps:

    Of course, any of the icebreaker questions or games mentioned above also work over video. So if you have a regular virtual meet up, switch things up each time by rotating your icebreaker.

As you give these icebreakers a try, give yourself a pat on the back for putting yourself out there and continuing to reach out to others. Well done!

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