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Friday, 3 November 2017

NaBloPoMo 2017: Day 3: 4 Practical Tips to Stop Arguing

As soon as you finish reading this sentence, close your eyes and think of 3 things you’d like to change in yourself. 

Got them?

Next – think about what you’ve actually done to change them. I mean – beyond wanting to change, and thinking you must change, and planning to change, and saying you’ll start next week …what have you PUT INTO PRACTICE?

If you found even one concrete step you’ve taken, congratulations! If you find that like many well-intentioned folks you haven’t really been able to act on your noble intentions, perhaps you should try to break down your intended goal into smaller parts that are easier to get started with.

Let’s say you find yourself getting into pointless arguments very often. Deciding “I will not argue henceforth” is great. But unrealistic. Because it’s not so easy for an argumentative person to stop arguing overnight. Instead, take time to break down this “I will not argue” into actionable tasks.

1 – I will move physically away from the site of argument so that I can no longer see the person who’s arguing.

2 – I will put enough distance between me and him or her so that the sound of the other person’s voice gets muffled and I can’t hear clearly what is being said.

This may sound funny to read right now when you are in a normal mood. But it’s a vital step when you’re actually arguing. Have you ever noticed what happens during an argument? You say one thing, the other person says something, and once irritation and anger set in, neither person is capable of actually processing what either one is saying. Each one goes off on his own trip.





Another thing I’ve noticed – oh yes, I argue too – is that often, my opinion gets decided not by WHAT is being said but by HOW it’s being said. The looks I get, the tone I hear, the body language I notice ….all these go to increase my irritation. Which is why doing point 1 and 2 I mentioned above can help cut off sensory inputs that fuel your irritation.

And two other painful things you SHOULD do….

3 – Keep your mouth shut for one whole minute. The urge to respond will fade away gradually.

4 - Think of what in YOU is provoking a particular reaction from someone. 

We’re not always the innocent victims that our mind makes us out to be. The sooner we realize this, the better we’ll be able to examine our own contributions to troubles that come our way. If you can find even one small thing that acts as a trigger and change that bit about yourself, it could work miracles.

Of all the things she wrote to me (which I’ve reserved for another post related to those particular things), my niece Rajashree shared an amazing insight of something that worked for her.

She says, “There’s a habit I taught myself in 20 seconds…it made me a more agreeable person…I never say “but” when I’ve just said sorry!”

Think about it …… when you say “Sorry” and affix a “But” after it, no one will notice the “Sorry”…it’s the “But” that takes centrestage. And it’s a clear indication that the apology is superficial because the “But” portion is what you really mean.

Now you may wonder, “So what if I don’t say it, maybe the thought will still be there in my head.” That’s quite okay to start with. Eventually, when you do it enough number of times, you will realize that your thoughts too begin to change and you will be more willing to accept an alternative viewpoint.


If you have any other PRACTICAL tips like this one, things that have worked for you, do leave them in the comments section so they can be useful to anyone reading this post…..

By the way, my nephew pointed out today that I've crossed the milestone of 100 posts on my blog...this one is the 102nd....a big thank you to all of you who read, comment, share your thoughts and encourage me to keep writing....


6 comments:

  1. Nice thought to bring up....
    Anger is the dangerous thing which ruins any kind of relationship...
    When I feel to argue ...I forcefully shut my mind and prefer not to talk for few minutes...in that few minutes ...I just think..."wether my anger is important or the person I'm abt to argue with..?""
    That will automatically reduce my anger and i say it in a good way what I wannted to tell ...by doing this I don't lose my temper...

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    1. That's an amazing way of looking at things, Bhargavi! Thank you for sharing it with us !

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    2. Having a view which is different from the other person may not always be considered as arguing. But, after giving our view, If we see that the other person is reacting without any intention of considering our view..it is best to move away from any such discussion.

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    3. You're right, Meena! Sometimes, not being ready to accept someone can have an alternate view itself is the trigger for an argument...

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  2. Most of the times I try to be away from the place of argument or try to be quite. But I think madam we need to express our views without going to the level of argument. It will relieves our stress.

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    Replies
    1. Yes...sadly, it's difficult for some to express without arguing.

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