Arguing may not be ideal, but there’s a right way and wrong way to do it. Here are 4 things you should never say during an argument.
Instead of “I hate you” try paying attention to your emotions and what’s causing you to feel this way. Why are you angry?
The words “I hate you” should never be used when talking to a loved one. Do you really hate the person you’re talking to? Or do you just hate how the action made you feel? If not, then don’t say it. If you must say the word, be specific about your feelings. For example, rather than saying “I hate you”, say “I hate how this made me feel” or “I hate when this happens”.
Instead of “You always/never”, try being specific about the problem and the change you’d like to see.
These generalizations can make a person feel unappreciated, as if you only see their wrongdoings. “Always” and “never” are usually an exaggeration and it overlooks any effort.
Instead of “That’s stupid/ridiculous” try saying: “I don’t agree”
These dismissive comments are rude, insensitive, and it can make the other person feel as though you believe their feelings are far more important than theirs.
Instead of “I’m leaving if…”, try stating your specific desires and expectations.
This goes for “I’m leaving if…” or any other ultimatum. These statements can make a person feel forced and even if your needs are met, it will very likely be done begrudgingly. Ultimatums can also cause the other person to doubt your true intentions.
It’s best to stay clear of comments that you may later have to apologize from. Name calling, blaming, and criticizing can trigger the listener. It’s never a good way to encourage someone to change. It makes people defensive, leaving very little room to hear anything important you might say.
During a disagreement, take as many deep breaths and breaks as you need. It’s best to continue the conversation later when you’re calm (this also lessens the chances of saying something you’ll later regret). Remember that it’s not about winning. It’s about resolving a conflict.
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