JUNE 24, 2021
“Arguments are healthy. They clear the air.”-Unknown
Arguments are lovely.
They give us ‘hot’ gossip. They make us validate our thoughts and opinions. They let us pin others down when they disagree with us, and they help us waste our time(without actually making it feel wasteful.)
The truth is, arguments are toxic, dangerous, and negative when there is no real basis for them. Many arguments are like that.
We react instead of thinking rationally about the situation and go entirely out of context to prove ourselves right.
That isn’t the right approach.
There’s a better one, just a few scrolls away.
What is an Argument?
What do you think an argument is?
According to dictionary.cambridge.org, an argument is “a disagreement, or the process of disagreeing.”
There are no bells and whistles to it.
But, the meaning of ‘argument’ we have is like a fully loaded Christmas tree that we need to un-decorate and simplify.
The only way to do that is by accepting this new definition and unlearning the old one.
Arguments don’t have to turn into “big fights” you have to tell everyone about. Arguments don’t have to be events that ruin a friendship or a relationship. Arguments don’t have to be giant events where you push someone down and prove your superiority.
Arguments are discussions where you try and reach towards a solution to a disagreement. That’s the undecorated Christmas tree.
How to Identify an argument?
Before we move on to dealing with an argument, we need to know how to figure out if we even are in an argument!
Yes, this sounds foolish and obvious, but we often turn normal discussions into arguments for no real reason.
That’s what happens in road rage. One person scraps another person’s car. Both of them know the cause and the solution. But they don’t discuss calmly and end up shouting at each other with no solid point. That’s not an argument. That’s anger.
Don’t put so many decorations on the Christmas tree that it collapses under that weight. Keep it light, keep it simple and keep it elegant.
The way to identify if an argument is even necessary is to ask this question: “Do I really disagree with that person, and is it important for me to prove my point, or am I just satiating my ego?”
If the answer is no, the argument doesn’t exist, and you just need to leave.
If the answer is yes, read on.
How to Deal With an Argument?
If you absolutely have to argue, please don’t add any decorations; they’ll make it uglier.
Yes, you need to keep it simple and to the point. Here’s how to do that:-
- Breathe and understand. Before blurting out any reaction, take a few deep breaths and calm down to realize what the argument is about. Is it a mistake you aren’t admitting, or is the other person not understanding your perspective? Whatever it is, understand the problem first.
- Respond, don’t react. Don’t just say what comes to your mind. Give a response that is to the point and leads towards the solution. The best way to respond is to listen and understand the other person first. Let them finish all they have to say, and then put out your thoughts and opinions. If the other person doesn’t accept them, ask the reason and listen intently. The key is to listen because that is how you will un-decorate the tree and understand the argument as it truly is.
- Separate the person from the issue. You don’t have to demean the other person or prove your superiority. You have to solve an issue. Don’t go into a rant about how the other person is wrong. Instead, stick to the original problem and keep the discussion to that. If the other person goes astray, simply say in a calm voice, “That isn’t what our original argument was. Let’s get back to the topic and find the solution.” Simple, quick, easy, and effective.
- Show respect. No matter how bad or wrong the other person may be, you need to stick to your values and talk with a sense of respect. Don’t just lash out your angry words at them. Explain your point of view and why it may be right. Many times, an argument continues for a long time because there is no proper communication. If you listen correctly and speak calmly, firmly, and respectfully, you’ll find a solution way quicker than by disrespecting the person or just blaming them. Try having a meaningful discussion. But if the other person does not listen to you or isn’t ready for communication, leave the argument there and come back later if possible. It will save you time and energy.
An argument doesn’t need to be a big event. It is just a simple discussion. Keep it to that.
Partnering in your success, happiness, and small arguments,