Can We Please Stop Arguing And Settle This Peacefully?
I've never come across anyone who confesses they like arguments. Some would admit they’ve arrived at the satisfaction of winning an argument, but no one really enjoys it, no matter what we’re arguing about. It’s never fun.
I see conflict and arguments as negative, something I want to avoid. I hate arguments and I’m not proud of it when it happens, yet sometimes I just can’t help myself.
Do I have to argue to get my point across?
When I had gotten into an argument with someone in the past, it’s for two purposes — to get them to see my point of view so they would change or to persuade them to accept mine. That’s it.
Unless we are highly conscious of our feelings and thought processes during an argument, our brain automatically defers to our animalistic past, where fighting is a survival instinct. Our thoughts and emotions that have survival values will produce behaviors that increase our chances of survival.
This means every time I get into an argument with someone, my emotions signal an imminent threat which then initiates an urgent action in response. My goal is to win, I intend to be right. I want to dominate. My brain may translate that as me wanting to get the message across and I wanted the other party to understand what I’m feeling at the moment so that he ‘gets’ it.
Staying present amid tough situations is crucial. Arguing with emotions blinds us to the truth.
Do we really just want to communicate?
However, during the process, I get disoriented, angry, and upset. I wanted to bite their head off. During a heated debate, I highlight what I believe to be wrong about them. I do this because my personal biases overlook the fact that they are not me. Just like I have my own sets of beliefs and convictions, I must respect the fact that others have theirs too.
When I forced my opinion on others and faced resistance or rejection, it burst out into an argument. Unconsciously, the motive gets skewed and now, I fight to win because my ego takes over. I thought I wanted the other person to ‘get it’ but the fact is, he won’t.
In a fit of pique, we’re unconscious of our mental and emotional processes. The minute that occurs, static charges buildup across the fighting ring. There is growling, roaring, and blaming taking place. Our brains are hooked on being right. Winning is the goal. We want the opponent to experience the pain we felt. Our voice gets louder, and we felt ourselves losing ground.
Wait! Stop! We’re not going down that path.
After a few recollections of such episodes, it dawned on me that staying present amid tough situations is crucial. Arguing with emotions blinds us to the truth. Of course, your feelings are your feelings and no one can tell you otherwise. The bottom line is when we argue with someone, it’s really about what’s going on inside of us.
The real question should be why I’m trying to impose my values on others?