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Step-By-Step Guide To Arguing With An Irrational Person

Step-By-Step Guide To Arguing With An Irrational Person

It can be very difficult to deal with irrational behaviour. Irrational people often choose to ignore reason and logic because they are focused on making a certain point, and they don’t want anything to get in the way of that. Sadly, most people have at least one irrational person in their lives. However, unless they have issues with mental health, you can always bring an irrational person back to reality. You can use certain techniques to communicate with irrational people – you can even find common ground with each other.

If you want to be able to communicate effectively with an angry, irrational person, follow our step-by-step guide below.

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1. Avoid intentionally pushing their buttons

If you know the person well, it is likely that you know exactly how to push their buttons and wind them up. This tactic should be totally avoided; choosing to wind someone up is childish, petty and offensive. It can also validate the other person’s irrational behavior. Keep the argument civil by only bringing up relevant comments.

2. Use evidence

Evidence is essential to win an argument – especially with an irrational person. Proof is difficult to deny, so back up your points with reliable and specific evidence. Consider what kind of evidence the irrational person is most likely to trust; are they very logical, or emotional? Some people are more likely to be swayed by a scientific study, and others are more likely to trust a magazine article.

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3. Point out logical fallacies

Irrational people often warp logic so that it works in their favor – don’t be afraid to call this behavior out. For instance, the logic “silence fallacy” is the idea that if there is no evidence for something, it must not exist, such as germs, God or aliens. Often people think they are being logical until someone points out the flaw in their thinking.

4. Argue about your ideas (not each other)

An argument is a good chance to discuss different opinions and see other perspectives. Do not call the other person stupid for their opinions; people are much more likely to become defensive (and more irrational) if you do. Instead focus on the subject of the argument to help resolve the situation.

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5. Use ‘we’ rather than ‘You’ or ‘I’

Language is very important during an argument. Saying ‘you’ and ‘I’ creates an unnecessary divide that will further drive you apart, but using ‘we’ shows you both as a single unit, encouraging the irrational person to see your point of view.

6. Respect their points

Treat others as you wish to be treated; If you are rude and disrespectful to someone during a fight, they will probably behave the same way. Remember that arguments are two-sided, and it is fine to disagree with their point, but to completely dismiss it makes the whole argument pointless.

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7. Apologize when you are wrong

Sometimes people say things during fights that are hurtful without realizing it. If you are arguing with an irrational person and you hurt their feelings, acknowledge it, apologize and move on. Irrational people often struggle to let go of certain things, and without an apology it is unlikely that they will try to understand your point of view.

8. Know when to drop the argument

It can be tough to let an argument go, but sometimes it is for the best. People rarely change their mind during a fight, but often they will go home and reflect on it, and slowly their opinion will change.

If you refuse to let the fight go even when the other person is upset or angry, you may be the irrational person. Respect that everyone has different opinions and you cannot make everyone think like you do. End the argument kindly by saying “I think we have very different opinions on this subject, which is fine. Hopefully we both learned something new today.”

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Amy Johnson

Freelance writer, editor and social media manager.

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Last Updated on January 18, 2019

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

7 Ways To Deal With Negative People

Some people will have a rain cloud hanging over them, no matter what the weather is outside. Their negative attitude is toxic to your own moods, and you probably feel like there is little you can do about it.

But that couldn’t be farther from the truth.

If you want to effectively deal with negative people and be a champion of positivity, then your best route is to take definite action through some of the steps below.

1. Limit the time you spend with them.

First, let’s get this out of the way. You can be more positive than a cartoon sponge, but even your enthusiasm has a chance of being afflicted by the constant negativity of a friend.

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In fact, negativity has been proven to damage your health physically, making you vulnerable to high levels of stress and even cardiac disease. There’s no reason to get hurt because of someone else’s bad mood.

Though this may be a little tricky depending on your situation, working to spend slightly less time around negative people will keep your own spirits from slipping as well.

2. Speak up for yourself.

Don’t just absorb the comments that you are being bombarded with, especially if they are about you. It’s wise to be quick to listen and slow to speak, but being too quiet can give the person the impression that you are accepting what’s being said.

3. Don’t pretend that their behavior is “OK.”

This is an easy trap to fall into. Point out to the person that their constant negativity isn’t a good thing. We don’t want to do this because it’s far easier to let someone sit in their woes, and we’d rather just stay out of it.

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But if you want the best for this person, avoid giving the false impression that their negativity is normal.

4. Don’t make their problems your problems.

Though I consider empathy a gift, it can be a dangerous thing. When we hear the complaints of a friend or family member, we typically start to take on their burdens with them.

This is a bad habit to get into, especially if this is a person who is almost exclusively negative. These types of people are prone to embellishing and altering a story in order to gain sympathy.

Why else would they be sharing this with you?

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5. Change the subject.

When you suspect that a conversation is starting to take a turn for the negative, be a champion of positivity by changing the subject. Of course, you have to do this without ignoring what the other person said.

Acknowledge their comment, but move the conversation forward before the euphoric pleasure gained from complaining takes hold of either of you.

6. Talk about solutions, not problems.

Sometimes, changing the subject isn’t an option if you want to deal with negative people, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be positive.

I know that when someone begins dumping complaints on me, I have a hard time knowing exactly what to say. The key is to measure your responses as solution-based.

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You can do this by asking questions like, “Well, how could this be resolved?” or, “How do you think they feel about it?”

Use discernment to find an appropriate response that will help your friend manage their perspectives.

7. Leave them behind.

Sadly, there are times when we have to move on without these friends, especially if you have exhausted your best efforts toward building a positive relationship.

If this person is a family member, you can still have a functioning relationship with them, of course, but you may still have to limit the influence they have over your wellbeing.

That being said, what are some steps you’ve taken to deal with negative people? Let us know in the comments.

You may also want to read: How to Stop the Negative Spin of Thoughts, Emotions and Actions.

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