Tag Archives: arguments



Many of us like to talk but not listen, especially about the things important to us and we sometimes bore others with a lengthy speech or create conflict because we insist that our opinions be heard, that they are true, and don’t realize that others may have valid opinions and facts which are totally different from our own.

The way to reduce conflict and get our point across frequently means listening closely to what someone is saying, accurately reading their emotional attachment to the topic, and asking follow up questions to determine what they are really thinking and why they think that way.

Listening and probing a little with questions will help you to better understand where a human is coming from and understanding will lead to a better reply than just an impulsive one without reflection.

Only after getting all the vital facts, opinions, and emotional attachment should you proceed with your opinions and facts and you should do so as briefly as possible so that the lengthiness of your explanations don’t confuse the one you are talking to.

Realize that just listening intently and smart questioning does not mean that you will convince another human that your opinion is valid but they will feel that you have respected their point of view by carefully listening and devoting your precious time to them.

Frequently saying that you agree with one or two points which a human is making will put that human in a more receptive mood to perhaps accept your point of view also.

Finally, if after listening to someone that you feel is wrong and will deny that they are wrong it is sometimes best to say nothing at all and move on to a different subject or end the conversation. If you are the boss and it is an employee whom you disagree with then of course you will have to deal with the problem head on to the best of your ability.

This blog is about listening and not about how to win an argument, confrontation, or discussion which requires more skills than just careful listening. If you are smart then you will become a better listener than a talker.

Good listeners are frequently more respected than good talkers because most humans think that what they have to say is important even though it is frequently boring trivia.

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Challenge a firmly held opinion or belief or aggressively criticize another human and angry emotions will almost always appear. Trying to convince one that you are right and that they are wrong takes much skillful conversation when it is only a mistake and it is mission impossible if it is a strong belief.

Probe gently for someone’s mindset before you arrogantly proceed to voice your strong opinion or belief. Some subjects such as politics, religion, and sports infrequently lead to logical discussions but can quickly escalate into emotional confrontations instead. Avoid sensitive subjects unless they become serious important problems in your life.

If you are not sure about how a human feels about a sensitive subject but want to know then gently ask “How do you feel about ______? If you greatly disagree with the feeling then just say OK and don’t pursue the subject any further.

No matter how cool we try to be we can get upset sometimes. Yelling, ranting, and throwing a tantrum will just cause bad emotions in other humans and won’t make you feel any better after showing your emotions. The best action is to slow down and breathe deeply and try to do more thinking when you feel that you have emotionally upset someone. Remember no one is stress free and everybody has to deal with their own stress as effectively as possible. Try to be the calmer one in any emotional flareup and your words will usually be more respected and not as offensive.

There are many ways to make someone feel uncomfortable and this is frequently done in emotionally misleading and accidental behaviors. One can cause discomfort by asking one to do something that they don’t want to do. Discomfort is also caused by doing something which one finds upsetting. If you insist on discussing a topic that humans don’t want to discuss this effectively makes someone very uncomfortable.

It is almost impossible to decrease irrational anger. When humans get angry for irrational reasons calmly and respectfully listen to their grievance but remember that it will not be easy because intense irrational anger will make you want to respond as angrily. Don’t try to reason with them because they are in no mood to be rational. Don’t offer an insincere apology but try to find some action of yours which made them angry in the first place which you do regret and apologize for that.

Be careful when you joke about something because even the best jokes may be taken seriously which becomes painful and awkward. If you insist on humor in your conversation then build on the joke and make it more extreme until it is obvious that you must be joking. If your attempt at humor fails then admit that you are joking before the circumstance gets worse. Many people don’t get jokes so rarely joke or better yet don’t joke if you want a conversation to proceed smoothly and logically.

Jokes frequently destroy the boundary between logic and nonsense and some push a joke too much. A courtesy laugh will only motivate the joker to push more so avoid an untrue laugh. Express confusion and communicate in your own words what the joke meant to you and that you honestly tried to understand it. They may analyze the joke and you will feel that it was somewhat funny or it may reveal how their brain works humorously. Jokes frequently make fun out of human frailty and errors so it is best to ignore a joke that you don’t understand or disagree with.

Don’t joke at the opposite sex.  There are differences between men and women but making fun of one gender is a communication that somehow your gender is superior to the other gender and this is nonsense which is overly prejudicial and biased. Most women are more emotional and social and talkative and caring than most men but that should be no reason to make fun of them since nature programmed them to be different for the benefit of the offspring. It takes a good man and a good woman(s) to raise offspring in a balanced and healthy way as nature programmed.

Never hide an insult and pretend a compliment because no one likes to be deceived.

Though most of us probably feel that we are above feelings of jealousy, occasionally we may experience them. If this exists then try to convince yourself that the object of your jealousy is not as desirable as it seems. Instead focus on how lucky you are and on the things which are right with your life. Jealousy is primarily experienced by the economically poor in this society which puts so much importance  on the possession of many material possessions.

Jealousy of attractive humans is rampant in a society which puts more value upon beauty than on health and smarts and is the reason why so many are obsessed irrationally with their looks.

Frequently you must reveal a personally shocking truth to someone who is not ready for the truth so their minds must be carefully prepared to hear it. Don’t hit them with the complete truth at once but try to present it in smaller and slightly less shocking chunks. Evidence in small chunks and then the complete evidence will make a mind naturally rebel from that much truth but it is necessary that you maintain your honest reputation despite shock to the listener. A person will reflect upon the confrontation later and continue to respect you for being honest and your good reputation in their subjective biased minds will be maintained.

Being honest, sincere, and reliable will ensure that a strong bond continues in a relationship even after many arguments which should decrease in quantity as time passes if you continue to maintain a trustworthy relationship despite the arguments.

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Learn to communicate with discussion more than with angry emotional confrontation when you disagree. Learn caring communication which means listening carefully to what the other is saying and supporting their right to disagree with you on rather trivial matters. When discussing rather important things remember that it may take more than one discussion to reach an agreement or a consensus on what the best thing to do is.

Boredom can reduce mutual attraction and sharing exciting activities together can maintain or even increase mutual bonding attraction. Plan some exciting mutually satisfying activities together throughout the marriage and you will increase your chances of remaining attractive to one another.

One way of avoiding arguments is withdrawl or ignoring the assault on you which may come in the form of severe criticism or a confrontational argument. When one partner has given up on discussing or irrationally arguing about problems then mutual attraction begins to fade and the marriage will be threatened. There is no constructive arguing possible if there is illogical ranting, name calling, profanities, and put downs as well as emotional dissatisfaction being expressed.

Few marriages will last if pessimistic depression exists frequently in one spouse. Mental health is very important in a marriage and if one is mentally handicapped and therapy does not help, then the marriage will probably not last long.

Too much caring or too much nurturing and protection or support of your spouse will lead to an overly dependent spouse who will not be able to function independently on her or his own. Quality caring and not quantity caring is what is preferable in a marriage. Quality caring means caring about the important things in the marriage and not caring so much about the rather trivial experiences, conflicting personally biased opinions, and problems which you are having.

Religious holiday traditions, especially for women, tend to increase the attractiveness of the relationship. What really strengthens a satisfying relationship is having a common or shared morality more than anything else and a recommended shared secular morality is- except in emergency situations- don’t destroy biodiversity, don’t lie, don’t be inefficient, don’t steal, don’t commit adultery if married, and don’t murder.

Sharing and celebrating each other’s successes also strengthens the marital bond. In a similar fashion it also strengthens a friendship bond if you celebrate each other’s successes. Intense optimistic shared emotions strengthen human bonds.

It may not be so obvious but sharing mutual bad feelings and emotions such as hatred, disapproval, grieving, or empathizing with a bad experience can also strengthen the human bond between two or more humans. Any shared or agreed to mutually intense emotional behavior strengthens human bonds whether the behavior is bad or good. Shared intense bad and immoral emotional behavior strengthens the human bond between delinquents and criminals. Criminal successes increase the human bonding between the participants.


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If you argue for entertainment or fun stop the bad habit because you will start unnecessary arguments impulsively with other humans when it is not appropriate.

Arguing with someone’s opinion which you disagree with will only lead to random emotional behavior which will waste time and energy without achieving a useful goal. You will not change a person’s mind with emotional righteousness and little logic but if you emphasize the important points with firmly said words you may succeed in updating their opinions which will adjust more with your own.

Don’t argue but try to discuss a topic as unemotionally as possible. If your opinion is weak and has only one or a few important provable facts use those to express disagreement. Permit your opponent to make the important points first and agree with the important ones which you also agree with. If you can’t answer an opinion with facts then remain silent and don’t push the topic further. Avoid as many arguments as you can because arguments frequently only express emotional disapproval and don’t solve any important problems.

There is no right method to argue or a wrong method to argue. All arguments are bad for you and your family and society. You will get angry at many things in your life but decrease anger as much as possible and count to 10 or even more until you are calm enough to continue a discussion and not an argument. If you can’t control your anger seek anger management help from a professional or start reading as much factual information as possible and not emotion filled literary works and hyped up emotional shows on TV and the media.

CONCLUSION: Arguing is verbal fighting or verbal abuse and one of you or both will get emotionally hurt by an argument. If you discuss any problem and use as many facts as you can come up with without getting emotional over it you will have a better chance of finding a solution. An attempted logical discussion, even if it fails, will not hurt your feelings as much and not leave you emotionally scared and wanting revenge or an apology.

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Subset: n. a thing

Someone’s beliefs may sound crazy to you but these people honestly believe subsets which are completely illogical and unreasonable. It can be very difficult to listen to them coolly and maturely and respectfully. Pointing to the logical problems with their beliefs seldom helps. Understanding that another’s irrational beliefs were indoctrinated by bad historical myths and behaviors of their role models is smart. Live and let live without fighting about it is smart and silence is golden so don’t communicate about the wrong belief.

Most people try to avoid conflict but this is not always possible. When in conflict with someone listen to them and you may find common ground. Try to make them understand your position by communicating understandably but firmly. One side may give in completely or a little or the communication may increase emotionally but eventually there will be some conclusion even though it may only be a consensus that you each will remain with your own opinions or concepts.

Many employers are now using what can be called a verbal warning. The logic of a verbal warning is that it is an attempt to correct a problem before it becomes bad enough to make a formal action necessary. At that moment it is easy to become defensive and answer back with an objection but instead only listen to their topic with an open mind. Once you have heard the topic and understand what led to the verbal warning then adjust your circumstance and correct your behavior.

You may want to complain to those with some power over you since we can’t always solve our own problems ourselves. Be careful not to bother someone with a problem they’re powerless to solve. Describe the problem thoroughly without exaggeration and try to only use the facts. Once you have told your supervisor the problem let them behave the best even though you may frequently disagree with their solution or solutions. If a better solution suddenly exists in your mind then offer it respectfully and see if your supervisor will approve or maintain the same opinion.

All businesses have complaining customers. Listen carefully to the complaint to the very end since it will make the customer feel that they have been heard and understood. Continue with a question or two if you don’t understand the complaint right away. If you don’t have an immediate answer then consult with your coworkers who may have dealt with a similar problem. If your coworkers can’t solve the problem then take it to your supervisor.

One of life’s most flattering and stressful experiences is when someone asks you for constructive criticism. If you can help be honest and even tell the truth if it is bad news and not good news. Share your opinions and give them a chance to defend theirs. It’s even possible that you may change your mind. In the end what you can do is tell them the truth as you subjectively see it and they will either accept it or disagree in private.

Misunderstandings are common and you should try to easily avoid them. Don’t use random words but try to communicate as understandably and relevantly and politely as possible without emotional outbursts. Choosing the right truthful words should be enough but try to avoid using information which will make people feel intensely because they sincerely may not share your emotions or feelings on the subject.

Don’t express kindness and try to deceive people by trying to hide your personal feelings of superiority. This patronizing insults a person and tells them exactly what you really feel about them and unfortunately other people will have a tendency to react with approval to the patronizing.

Don’t talk to people when they say they are lucky or unlucky because luck should be a very small subset in your successful life and if you feel unlucky then it is usually your own fault that a subset didn’t work or perform as you wished.

When you ask what’s with a body subset such as a reddish eye or slurred speech be considerate because they are probably embarrassed before you communicate it. It may seem rude to start communicating the unpleasant fact but that is no reason why you can’t discuss it openly and honestly without implying disapproval.

Perhaps the hardest thing to master is to avoid conflict after easily saying NO or SORRY NO to a communication especially a favor. Justifying such a short answer can be very difficult. When we are asked to do a behavior which seems easy or enjoyable we frequently do it. Frequently saying yes to an asked favor can increase into unreasonable and impractical demands which sadly require you to create complete boundaries or you run the risk of becoming everybody’s servant and not getting paid for it.

Sometimes someone comes to you with a problem when they really only want emotional support to continue on and solve the problem mostly on their own. Learn to recognize a plea for emotional support and nothing more because even in close relationships at home and with friends sometimes just reassurance and empathetic expression is all that is requested when a bad situation arises and it is all that is needed in the circumstance. Probing too much at such a time may just create conflict and defensiveness which would not have arisen otherwise.

If you liked this evergreen blog read more of them and read one or more of my evergreen books, especially COMMON SENSE.