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Lacking the knowledge on a wide range of topics


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Hey guys,

Something I tend to struggle with is that I feel I lack knowledge in alot of different areas in life. Things that most other people all seem to know. This is usually a big issue when in a group conversation, half the time the group will be talking about something and I won't be able to input anything into the conversation because I simply just don't know anything about the subject.

I also just don't have that many interesting stories to tell to people because I just haven't experienced enough. I know this is down to gaming way too much in my youth and not getting out there and learning/experiencing different things.

I'm only 19 but still, I feel like other people my age just know so much more random shit than me it gets quite depressing at times.

So basically i'm just wondering how you guys think I can get myself up to speed with everyone else and just being able to have conversations about all the random stuff that people bring up in conversation that usually I just have no clue about.



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Other than doing more activities and socializing more to create your own stories the best thing you can do is read. Read read and read some more. Reading helps you think about different topics and experience other viewpoints faster than anything else. If you are having trouble starting go to your local used book story and try and find 3 different books to take home and try out.

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If u dont have anything to say, how about asking some questions?

When I meet old people, I dont have things to say, like your situation, so all I do is making some questions.


Imagine news anchors. Most of the things they do is asking during interview, but it keeps conversation going.


People like to talk about their stories, so make other people lead conversation. You can start your own things later. After you figure out how people be a fluent storyteller.

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Yes asking questions is something I already do alot and it is very effective. But not so much in group conversations where I always tend to take the back seat and not say much at all. 

I'd like to be able to hold the floor in group conversation and just take a more active role but it is difficult when I can't always keep up with the topics. 

I shall begin reading alot more broader subjects, as I only tend to be reading self-help stuff at the moment. 

Thanks guys :)

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We live in a period that we have way too much information to know. Knowing about, like, what happened in 1924 in Java Island won't help much. I say it because I've lost a lot of time reading wikia and stuff like this...

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I KNOW how you feel. I look smart. I mean my face, my face looks like a know a fuckton of stuff. Far from the reality, because of games. It really makes me uncomfortable, specially around knowledgeable friends (and specially about films, because I love the art). I have this constant feeling of being some kind of fraud, even when it's not my fault looking (uhm, and being a bit, ok) nerdy.

The best advice I can give you is: LISTEN, LISTEN, LISTEN. Every random piece of information can serve in a casual conversation. You never know what you can learn next. Become a human radar. When you feel ready, make questions. When someone makes a reference, write it down discreetly, check it out at home later, whatever. Take it easy. You will eventually find out two things:

1. People tend to talk about the same things, so you will be subtly asked to know about some topics more than others. Rocket science can be fascinating, but you will probably be talking more about music... (Your strategy may vary at this point, you can try to be a jack of all trades or be that unusual guy who talks about rocket science. Or a bit of both. It is really an art, human interaction).

2. Many people drop shallow information to look smarter and better informed than their peers. When you put yourself in the world you will begin to REALLY notice this, not just acknowledge it's a thing. You will smell it. You will predict it. It will probably disappoint you and comfort you at the same time, since the expectative of the information you consider you need to know will drop.

I can't tell you this enough, take it easy, keep your cool. Learn slowly. Have fun learning, don't take it as a chore (trust me I also know that feeling). And L I S T E N.

Best luck! Please keep us updated if you can and want. ;)

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That's epic advice @Hitaru. I will use that. What i want to add is that at the end of the day you find yourself remembering truly only everything that you are interested in. I read a lot, about various topics. I read about parenting, psychology (i'm crazy about that), journalism, politics etc. But i can still not say that i know a lot about those things, and i think that's mainly due to experience. You have to experience most topics to actively remember it. I do think your brain stores more then you think but it will only come up when you really need it.

So maybe you don't feel like you know much, or have even any interesting thoughts about something but that is simply not true.

I read about politics but i still don't know how all systems and mechanics work, all protocolls etc. Do you know what i do remember? how politicians discuss and debate. How they try to pursuade someone else. 

That's 1 example. You see, i'm interested in the whole topic but at the end of the day the memory will be of very specific about some certain things. 

Hope this makes sense to you :) 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Wow, thanks for the responses guys!

@Hitaru, Great advice dude. I really need to take that last point home about taking things easy. I'm definetly wayyy too hard on myself but I just want to improve myself fast!
I feel like I'm like this because I want to start talking to girls and want to be able to talk about a wide variety of interesting topics.
I do like the idea of carrying a small notepad around and jotting things down that I'd like to find out more about. I will definitely start doing this.

@Ironfly, Yeah that makes sense. Experience definitely seems to be key for learning the most about things. I read quite a lot through-out the day, but I feel like the majority of what I read does NOT stay in my head. Infact most of the time, by the time I've got to the end of a article, all of the information mentioned at the beginning I've completely forgotten about! D:

I shall try and stay patient, and continue to keep on learning!




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  • 1 month later...

I can relate to this, and it sucks. My friends in real life cut down on gaming in around 2015~, the end of Highschool but I couldn't let go, and now I'm stuck.  Learning from mistakes and stepping forward is just a step in itself. Read a few books you're interested in, watch some good YouTubers who do news topics, etc. You do have good experiences, but it feels like you can't relate to your friends, which is fine. Things take time!

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