Are you an argumentative person?
Many people can name a time or two in their lives when arguing has ruined an occasion. It could be a picnic, a movie night, a barbecue or a family event. It might even be a special relationship event, like a honeymoon or an anniversary.
In most relationships, we find that arguing can happen without anyone’s trying, simply by the nature of two good-willed people having different opinions. We simply won’t always agree. The problem is that those disagreements have a way of evolving. While they may start out small, they can grow without limits until both people are exhausted, resentful, or even becoming physically aggressive.
They tend to get even worse once we try to stop them. This is because we attempt to end them by ignoring the other person, shutting him up, or proving him wrong. Rather than choosing to be the ones to drop out of the argument ourselves, we try getting the other person to be the one who drops out. Of course, this all only infuriates him, provoking him further, rather than providing him with a peaceful way out of the argument.
We know that divorce rates are high, and that it is largely due to the constant arguing that so many couples can’t seem to get away from. While things may look okay on the surface, many are bickering behind the scenes at every meal, on every vacation, and on every drive to and from church. Quite often, the arguments are about something that neither person can even remember the topic of later.
So, with so much time and energy wasted on forgettable topics, leading to both regret and resentment, it is clear that many of us need to find a way to stop pointless arguing and bickering from ruining the precious time we have with the people we love. So, this book does just that. It offers you multiple ways to put an end to unwanted arguing.
But, it attempts to fix only half of the problem – your half. What makes this problem unique in its solving is that it only needs to be solved halfway. Since it takes two to tango, we only need to keep one person off the dance floor. Then, the other will have no one to dance with. Thus, the whole situation improves.
Perhaps this isn’t what you wanted to hear. You wanted an approach that focuses on your spouse, your siblings, your best friend or your father-in-law. After all, they’re the ones who are argumentative. You, on the other hand, are just the victim of their bullheaded ways.
But wait… if that’s true, then why, whenever these people start arguing with you, do you end up arguing back? Why do you become just as active in that cycle that you claim to be so drained by? Maybe, it’s because you are just as much an arguer as they are. Ouch. Now there’s a consideration.
One thing about arguers is that they’re usually pretty bad at identifying themselves. They don’t see themselves as argumentative, they see themselves as determined, right-minded, fighters for justice and doers of what’s right.
Because of this, it makes it difficult for them to see their argumentative sides, or to get the help they would need to improve their relationships. This is one of the main obstacles of this book – to help arguers identify themselves. And this, I’m afraid, includes most of us.
Those of us who don’t know we are arguers are actually the worst kind. We truly believe that our arguments are simply happening to us, and that we are totally helpless in them. And, because we believe we are helpless, we aren’t aware of what our power can do. Like a child with a loaded gun, we don’t know how much we can hurt those we’re firing at.
But also, we tend not to see our contributions to our arguments, which stokes a self-righteous flame of believing that we are innocent, and that any bad actions of ours are not really our fault – they are justified by how we’ve been provoked.
Worst of all, is our blindness to our deep obsessions for winning. We think we don’t care about winning, and yet we somehow still always find ways to win, to get the last word in, and to keep our opponents from feeling heard, validated, or important. Does any of this describe you? If so, you probably aren’t about to admit it. Because, another thing about arguers is that if you tell them they’re arguers, they’ll argue with you up and down that they’re not.
So, I challenge you, dear reader – if you think you aren’t an arguer, or if you think you don’t care about winning, then go out and willingly lose at something. Let somebody make a decision that involves you that you totally disagree with. Give up right in the middle of a game you’re about to win. Tell someone of the opposite political party that you think their views make more sense than yours. I can almost guarantee, you won’t like the feeling.
Or, take this small test that I’ve created, designed to see if you fit the profile of an arguer. Simply answer YES or NO to the following ten questions.
THE ARGUER’S TEST.
Is arguing rare for you?
Would your closest friends or spouse agree?
Are you a contributor in the arguments that you are a part of?
Are you sometimes unreasonable?
Do you enjoy the feeling of losing?
Do you think your own opinions are wrong?
Do you think justice doesn’t matter?
Do you enjoy handing over control?
Do you feel you should keep quiet when others are expressing inaccurate views?
Do you think that the arguments you’ve been a part of say something about your personality?
If you answered “no” to 3 or more of these questions, then there is a high probability that you are an arguer. Of course, this doesn’t calculate anything with exact certainty. It just proves, if anything, that you are human, and that because you are human, and because you care about important things, and see the merit in sticking up for yourself, you’ll naturally have more incentives to argue than someone who doesn’t.
Discovering that you are an arguer can seem like bad news, because it implies that you’ve probably been responsible for a lot of the arguments you’ve been a part of. But, it’s good news too, because it means that your future doesn’t have to look like your past! You aren’t powerless, and you are capable of changing those situations that you’ve always felt helpless in!
If, by chance, you aren’t yet ready to admit that you’re an arguer, then this may be where we part ways. If so, then I wish you the best in your endeavors, and I commend you for your honesty. Please don’t forget to pick up your refund for this book, and to get a copy of the book you really wanted, called “How to win”, or “How to come out on top”, or “How to get other people to surrender so that you don’t have to”. Or, if you really are ready to admit that you are a contributor to the problem, then congratulations! Let’s continue!
One thing to realize about arguing is that it is a choice. If we truly are interested in peace, we’ll have to choose it. And, we’ll have to choose it right when we least feel like it. That is, right when we feel provoked, instigated, and tempted to make less-peaceful choices instead.
Sometimes it involves choosing peace over a thought or a feeling we would like to express. You can choose right now to talk to your husband about selling that old motorcycle he’s been stubbornly holding onto, or, you can choose to enjoy your drive home from church with him in peace. Chances are, you can’t have both. Which will it be?
The choice not to argue breaks down into an even more fundamental choice yet – that is, choosing the love we have for a person over the love we have for our own wishes, ideals, and principles. Because, it’s not so much about what we’re fighting for, as it is about how we are fighting, and who we’re fighting with. Most often, in the heat of the battle, we have our swords pointed right at someone we care deeply for, who we don’t really want to see injured.
So, in order to minimize the amount of damage that we do to our loved ones, I have written this book, providing you with multiple ways to avoid arguments, particularly on those occasions that we want to protect. They are simple and extremely effective, and you may wish you had started applying them sooner.
Life is short, and it doesn’t make sense to live in disharmony. Why not invest some time in learning how to prevent arguing? Why hope that others will simply behave as we wish, and then become surprised when they don’t? That is neither effective nor necessary. Especially when there are steps that we can take to minimize arguing and maximize quality time. Doesn’t that sound better?
Without further ado, let’s begin! Click HERE to continue!