AEE 425: Where Were We? How to Bring an English Conversation Back from a Tangent

English conversation come back from tangent

Do you ever get into a conversation where the person you are speaking with goes off on a tangent?

Maybe they don’t even realize that they have gotten away from the topic but you need to bring them back.

You don’t want to get side tracked.

Find out how to bring someone back to the main objective of the conversation today.

In a more informal situation like at a party it’s great to go off on tangents because that’s how you build relationships and build great conversations.

A few weeks ago we talked about how to use “anyways” which can be used in different situations when the atmosphere is awkward but today we’ll talk about something that is related but slightly different.

Here are some way to bring someone back from a tangent:

  • “So you were saying….?”
  • “OK so anyways….”
  • “Where was I?”
  • “Where were we?”
  • “So what were you saying?”

 

In American culture we tend to get down to business right away when we enter a business meeting whereas in other cultures we know that there is more relationship building required and in that case it would be ok to go off on a tangent.

Pay attention to culture when it comes to going off on tangents.

 

What other phrases do you know to come back from a tangent?

Have you ever tried to use them?

Let us know in the comments below.

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