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How to Be Mindful in an Argument

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/04/well/mind/how-to-be-mindful-in-an-argument.html

nytimes.com

How to Be Mindful in an Argument
Staying mindful during an argument allows us to choose conversation, discourse and debate in ways that do not escalate the situation.

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Avoiding a heated exchange

Avoiding a heated exchange

When we disagree with someone, it doesn't have to turn into a heated argument.

Staying mindful during the exchange allows us to select conversation and debate in ways that do not aggravate the situation.

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How to be mindful in an argument

  • Start with yourself. How do you relate to the person or topic discussed?
  • Check in with your body. What are you feeling - are you uneasy, frustrated, angered, fearful? Note it, and allow yourself to be in it.
  • Pause, breathe, and return to your center. What are you arguing for or against? What outcome do you desire? Can you let go of your desire for it?

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Defusing an argument

  • Try to agree on what it is you are trying to resolve. Many arguments are the result of miscommunication.
  • When you express differing opinions, try to do so without coming across as angry.
  • If the disagreement continues, speak your truth even when it is difficult.
  • Remain calm and try to be respectful of the other person.
  • Keep an open mind to find a peaceful resolution.
  • Be thankful for the experience. It can help you grow and learn about yourself.

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Convince Them With Confidence

  • Speak confidently, be concise, and try not to repeat yourself. 
  • Give the appearance that you truly know what’s right from the beginning, even if you don’t have all o...

Avoid Common Argument Fallacies

Winning an argument often comes down to who can go the longest without contradicting themselves and keeping sound logic, not direct persuasion of the other party.

Anecdotal Fallacy

Using a single personal experience as the foundation of your argument or your big piece of evidence. 

For example, your phone may have broken right after you bought it, but you can’t use that to argue that those phones are not worth the purchase for others.

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Validate Their Feelings

Saying things like 'I understand why you'd feel that way...' or 'Anyone would feel like that in the same situation' validates the other person's emotions and completely disarm...

Look At It As A Conversation

Go back to the concept of talking with someone rather than talking to someone.

It can help keep the other person cool, which pretty much always means you've won the argument.

Make It All About Them

We naturally approach the world from our own points of view,

The key to successful persuasion is to show how and why something matters in relation to that person's life and experience.

Ask for their point of view

To gain trust and build rapport, you need to hear out what the other person thinks without interrupting or disagreeing.

Try asking open-ended questions, like: "Why do you think that...

Mirror your opponent

If you mimic your opponent (in a subtle way), they are more likely to believe you.

For example, if they are sitting cross-legged, wait a few seconds and cross your legs too. And make sure that what you are doing is not too obvious.

Make direct eye contact

...while you listen. This makes the speaker's arguments less persuasive, which makes your opinion look strong.

Fix the speaker in your sight as soon as they start speaking.