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How to win an argument: Installment #4 in an Eight Part Series from Speaker/Motivator Michelle OieHello! Post 3/8 is about using certain types of words in an argument. That’s important because this post is about saying what NEEDS to be said.#4. BE BRAVE
Ever notice how SOME older people say whatever they want no matter how offensive? I believe it’s because they are tired. Tired of having spent 80 years holding back what they REALLY want to say!
Saying what you really want can be freeing. But try to do it when the other person is ready to hear it. Then again, they may never be ready to hear it.
Having an argument end with things left unsaid leaves resentment behind as fuel for a later argument. If you follow the advice in posts 1/8, 2/8 and 3/8 I believe you can be brave in saying what you want if you approach it carefully. And know that “getting things off your chest” doesn’t always have to happen during an argument. Here are some examples.
Prepare them by asking permission. This should create a relatively non-threatening space to speak since they have invited you to do so. I’ve started with, “Can I ask you a question?”, “Do you really want to know how I feel and what I think?”, “Can I be honest?” If they answer yes they are telling you they want to hear what you have to say and are ready to listen.
Using a non-attacking “I” statement (from post 3/8) you can say, “I just feel like every time I want to go to the library I have to answer a series of questions about it before I go. Why is that?” “I have a theory. Tell me if this is true…” “I feel like I earn money but I can’t spend it.” If you speak your statements through a “this is the way I see things” lens you can’t technically be wrong. Even if they don’t agree they will hopefully understand what you are saying.
I’ve let things bottle up for 10-20 years and it’s not good. By not saying anything I thought I was being nice. But what if saying it will help the other person grow? I also didn’t say anything because I thought I had to be less judgemental, sensitive or picky. Sometimes it is me who has to grow. But even so, it doesn’t hurt to get out how I feel so that I CAN grow. Maybe instead of arguing I ask them to help me understand some things and get beyond my hang-ups. Hey, it might be a bonding moment!
Resentment is the cancer of relationships. It’s best to get out in the open what needs to be said… in a LOVING way. This all depends on the person with whom you are discussing things but if it is a loving relationship you both will be more open to listening and will want things to end well. Good luck!!NOTE: To read the rest of this eight part series, and learn more about topics like Know why you are arguing, What’s your intent?, Use non-aggressive words, Be brave, Stay focused, Don’t interrupt, Keep talking and Face the truth., visit Michelle’s blog HERE.
Michelle Oie is living the dream as a full time employee, wife and mother. Although she has been a Christian motivational speaker and listener for over 10 years, she’s new to blogging and loving every minute of it! Check out Michelle Oie Speaking at www.michelleoie.com or on Facebook.