This is a running list of good Conversation Transitions to use: more are added as they are found or suggested in the comments below.
Yes. And _____.
Speaking of *Old Topic*, *New Topic*.
I can relate to that, I too/also _____.
My take on ______ is ______.
I’d love to stay longer, but it’s getting late and I *insert legitimate reason* [need to work tomorrow].
“Hear me out” is less defensive than “Let me explain”
“Can we talk about ____?” To shift the conversation topic without making others feel like you are forcing and hijacking the conversation, which is an abrupt and disrespectful thing to do: you are forcing your personal desires onto everyone else.