Love & Relationships | Turning A Bad Argument Into A Healthy Conversation
Arguing- it’s that thing we all hate, but it continues to happen…and there is no way to really stop it. It can happen with your mate, a family member or a friend. You waste time bickering back and forth and placing blame because you just know you’re the one who’s right. Have you ever wondered why it seems like you don’t get anywhere in an argument? It’s because you don’t. In most arguments both parties just want to be understood, so they yell over what their loved one is saying. If we all take the time to speak, listen and place blame in a positive manner we could prevent the same disputes from recurring, and hopefully eliminate all the time and fuss in a future conversation.
Speaking: It’s important not to yell at the other person. Communicate in a calm, even tone. Yelling will only do two things- frustrate the other person and anger you more causing you to lose track of every point you want to make. Most people talk faster when they are yelling. If you’re talking faster, you are not completing your thoughts. The point in an argument is to get your problem out there so it can be solved. We all know that when someone is yelling at us, most times we’re so angry or confused at why they’re yelling that we’re not fully listening to what the other is saying.
Listening: Not listening effectively is what causes the same arguments to keep occurring, either because you didn't hear everything that was said, or because the speaker doesn't feel you were paying them attention. These communication blocks are called barriers, and they occur with the speaker and the receiver. When you roll your eyes and cross your arms while the other is speaking, it gives off the impression that you don’t care about what they have to say, causing an emotional barrier in the communication process. Surfing the Internet, sending a text on your phone or channel surfing give off the impression that you aren't paying attention, which causes the speaker to think you aren’t listening, creating a physical barrier. If the speaker goes into the argument thinking that their loved one is not going to understand what he or she is trying to say, it causes him or her to impair the message they are giving, ultimately doing what they already felt was going to happen.
Placing blame: It’s the most common phrase you hear in an argument- YOU, YOU, YOU! Never place blame on the other person. Instead of saying “you did this or that,” try “I feel that” or “I may have not been clear”. You’ll be surprised how much one word can change the tone of a conversation. No one wants to feel blamed for something, or worse, no one wants someone else telling him or her they did something that, in actuality, they may not have even done. Avoid pointing those fingers. This is another way of saying you without speaking, and it ties into listening. How can you really listen when the other person is shoving their finger in your face?
Remember that communication is not just about talking; it’s also about understanding the other person. Make it a point to listen! Whether you realize it or not, we are always communicating, so be careful of your nonverbal expressions and body language. Following these rules won’t prevent an argument from occurring, but it will help turn that negative fussing into a healthy discussion, and hopefully prevent you from getting high blood pressure in the process.
-Til Next Time!