…today’s secret…How to win an argument.
Some people go nuts when you challenge their crusted-over, nailed-down tight belief system on how things ought to be. They argue, especially about politics.
Traditional, undisciplined arguing is just a shouting match with childish rules. It’s verbal fisticuffs, first one to cry or leave flustered loses. Blood is spilled emotionally and/or physically.
Rarely does anyone change their mind because of an argument. When cornered, they dig in and sacrifice wealth, health, and dignity before admitting they’re wrong.
So, to win an argument you need to persuade, not argue.
Remember, you always have the option to walk away because you don’t have the time or patience to stay. Your call.
But, if you stay, remember that much of our situational reactions spring from our different backgrounds and experiences which makes communications difficult, especially at the beginning of a persuasion process.
Here’s the inside secret. People change their mind because they have an internal epiphany. They wake up in the middle of the night and realize what a doofus they’ve been in trying to defend the undefendable.
Their change in thinking comes from the inside out.
Therefore, your challenge is not to tell them how to think, but give them information to think upon and wait for the epiphany to emerge.
This first requires you to know what you want out of the situation. What is it you would like them to do, or know, or believe?
Second, you must begin the process to disarm their anger and reframe the conversation to possibly open up an avenue where a bond might form.
This is not as hard as you might think…you begin soothing their resistance through their side door.
Here are two keywords to get you in their side door:
Instead of saying “What the hell are you talking about” say “Yes, and…”
…the next words you speak will keep the flow going and allow both of you to remain engaged.
A few “Yes, ANDs” from you should hopefully implant some good epiphany growth seeds.
However, be careful. I’m assuming here that you have the superior “Yes, AND…” firepower.
If not, you may be the one moving off your position and agreeing with the person you were attempting to persuade.