You are in the mid of a heated conversation – and the person you are trying to convince seems reluctant to grasp your point of view. What will you do?
Arguments are not logical. To win a fight, you have to understand people. Most people avoid arguing. But arguments can be utilized for good—they can teach, polish thinking, and test old ideas in significant ways. The examples below will help you think carefully, which will make you more likely to win the discussion.
The odds of winning an argument involve more than just logic and rationality as there are many other factors involved. The idea is to encourage them by finding enough common ground to win them to your side–not running to opposite corners and shouting across the divide.
Scientific Ways to Win Any Argument
1. Be social.
Arguments are not rational. So be respectful of other individual’s viewpoints, no matter how trivial it may seem. When people have their dignity validated somehow, they tend to be more open to info that challenges their principles. With the emotional connection created, you can then start getting rational.
2. Do not try to win the argument.
Attacking somebody’s thoughts puts them into fight-or-flight mode. Once they are on the brink, there will be no getting through with them. Thus, if you want to be influential, practice – Extreme agreement. Take your partner’s opinions and proceed them to their logical — and possibly illogical — deduction.
A study divided individuals with extreme political opinions into two groups — people who had to clarify why their views were correct and the others with clearing up how their principles can turn into actual policy. What was the result?
People who gave their explanations for being correct were just as confident in their beliefs after the research as they were earlier. But the people who had to clarify the procedure of execution had softer views.
4. Ask open-ended questions.
When fighting with your partner, ask questions that let him/her open up. Examples include:
- How can you change it if you have all the money in the world?
- Where do you see yourself in three years?
- How do you like your job?
It works in arguments in the workplace, too — open-ended questions help alter competitive communications into cooperative ones.
5. Be confident.
People do not listen to the brightest being in the room. Instead, they listen to those who pretend to know what is correct. They instinctively look for “messy proxies for expertise” like extroversion, gender, race, or confidence level instead of paying attention to what people are stating.
6. Stay calm.
Whether you are using or replying to a logical or emotive dispute, keep it as calm as possible. The best thing to do when in a quarrel is to stay calm and talk slowly—you cannot shout and talk slowly at the same time. Compelling yourself to talk slowly helps to keep the reactions under control and your thoughts balanced. If that sounds like a task, it is: “This requires a lot of discipline, but it’s easy to focus on.”
7. Demonstrate that other people agree.
Social proofing is one of the finest strategies to get people to see things your way. According to social proof, we suppose what other people are doing is the accurate reaction/behaviour in a circumstance. It is the cause of extended lines in front of an eatery that makes the food inside seem tempting. It is also why having the endorsement of a celeb is such an effective marketing device.
8. Go beyond anecdotes.
Experts often use ‘consensus’ as a last resort and for a decent reason. It is the composed ideas of all experts and not just the one you are quarrelling with. There can be one or two experts who disagree, but if the majority of experts have reached an agreement, it means that there is so much evidence in support of an idea that it is a definite thing, constructed on state-of-the-art knowledge.
9. If all fails, walk away.
Occasionally it gets dreadful, or the fight seems to be going in loops. If the discussion is not getting anywhere, ask your partner directly: Is there anything I can do to change your mind?
If they say that nothing will change their mind, have faith in them, and walk away. At times a fight is a stalemate —and that is fine. You have won if you have learned something.
In conclusion, the angrier you are in the fight, the less likely they will understand your point. Why? Because you lose the ability to sensibly sustain your position. The good news … being hopeful enables you to reason clearly, paving the way that you’ll win by sheer force of logic.
Liked Scientific Ways to Win Any Argument? Also read: One Mantra, To Live a Happy Life.
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