We’ve all been there. It starts out as a harmless conversation until your viewpoints no longer match. The atmosphere becomes tense and it is hard to bite your tongue. No matter whether a separation discussion or a debate on COVID-19, an argument is then often inevitable. So how can you defuse the situation? How can you stay true to your principles of respect, equality, and empathy when the going gets tough? This month we provide another five valuable tips on how to handle arguments and keep your cool in conflict situations.

6. Arguing requires you to take a position
In an argument diverging positions are often an expression of dynamics that we consider useful to achieve our goals. Don’t insist on disproving the other person’s position but instead ask yourself what lies behind your own, because…

7. Arguing is about vested interests
… generally the answer will be vested interests. In the final instance your goal is to realize those interests. The more transparent these interests are for all participants, the greater the probability that the argument will open up new options.
Our advice? Ask the person you are arguing with why they are making their demands. This will make things a lot clearer and easier to understand.

8. Arguing requires the right words
It isn’t always easy to find the right tone and words during an argument. Even if you are convinced that you are doing everything right, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the other person will understand things the way you mean them. It is worth asking the other person what message they heard. Consider whether this corresponds with the one you wanted to convey, either consciously or subconsciously. Remain interested, engaged, and polite.

9. Arguing requires a structure
Another important aspect is the time and location of the conflict situation. Where you are can often directly impact a discussion. If you feel that things could develop into an argument, make sure that everyone who could contribute to a solution is present.

10. Arguing can strengthen your mindset
Few situations demonstrate as clearly exactly where we currently are in our personal development as an argument. If you can use conflicts and crises to further exploit your own personal potential for development, then you will always gain from an argument.

Our conclusion:
Try to take up the challenge of engaging in conflict, while treating the other person with respect and as an equal. Only be doing so will you be able to find a solution. And should it not be possible to arrive at a peaceful resolution, then seek help. Whether personal or business-related, mediation is a good option for resolving arguments.