How To Win Debates and Influence People? - Deepstash
How To Win Debates and Influence People?

How To Win Debates and Influence People?

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Exhausting someone in argument is not the same as convincing them.



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We often find ourselves in a position where we have already formed an opinion before the debate even started.

But changing your mind doesn’t make you a flip-flopper or a hypocrite. It means you were open to learning. The approach should be collaborative- one in which we show more humility and curiosity, and invite others to think more like scientists


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The Science Of The Deal

A good debate is not a tug-of-war, where you can drag your opponent to your side if you pull hard enough on the rope. It’s more like a dance that hasn’t been choreographed, negotiated with a partner who has a different set of steps in mind. If you try hard to lead, your partner will resist. If you can adapt your moves to hers, and get her to do the same, you’relikely to end up in rhythm.

In a war, our goal is to gain ground rather than lose it. But in a negotiation we can’t stand still and expect the other person to make all the moves. To get in harmony, we need to step back from time to time.


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Dancing To The Same Beat

  • We won’t have much luck changing other people’s minds if we refuse to change ours. We can demonstrate openness by acknowledging where we agree with our critics and even what we’ve learned from them. Then, when we ask what views they might be willing to revise, we’re not hypocrites.
  • Convincing other people to think again isn’t just about making a good argument- it’s about establishing that we have the right motives in doing so.
  • Be willing to listen to what someone else is saying and give them credit for it. It makes you sound like a reasonable person who is taking everything into account.


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  • A single line of argument feels like a conversation; multiple lines of argument can become an onslaught.
  • As important as the quantity and quality of reasons might be, the source matters alot.
  • The person most likely to persuade you to change your mind is you. You get to pick the reasons you find most compelling, you come away with a real sense of ownership over them.


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