We’re closing in on the time of year where families near and far will come together and give thanks. Over a great meal and better company, they’ll cherish the moments they have – until that relative you can’t stand triggers the elusive discussion everyone so dearly wanted to avoid. We all know that person and while we would rather shun them from future engagements, it’s important we come to terms with the reality that our world is filled with problems that need to be discussed head on. Here are a few ways to approach your adversary when the moments catches up to you.
Have Some Perspective
Maybe you had the best year of your life. You received the promotion that was long overdue and your career is going as planned. Or perhaps this year was a dumpster fire and New Year’s Eve couldn’t arrive soon enough. Regardless of where you fall on the spectrum, opening your eyes to a world that exists beyond your scope of knowledge is important.
It’s a point of consideration that’s needed here because not everyone is as jubilant, or depressed if that’s your current state of mind.
Every conversation needs to be approached like a blank canvass, filling in the details only as they’re brought to your attention. Begin the conversation without biases, open your ears and your heart. This step alone will demonstrate a sign of respect for each other’s opinion.
Lean Into Discomfort
The goal of a conversation is to “win” then you’ve already lost. True progress is made when you learn something so new it may embarrasses you for lack of knowledge or consideration. Be willing to hear something that makes you uncomfortable in an effort to come away with valuable knowledge.
Know When To Walk Away
Some people seek arguments and will actively target anyone who looks vulnerable, to rub their ego. If you happen to be victimized by this troll, the best you can do is justify your reasoning with substantial examples and walk away. It’s not worth damaging whatever is left of the relationship to prove a point that will not determine the plight of your future. Leave it all at the table and come to terms with the result.
One, a combination or all of these examples will better prepare you for any impromptu argument that may leave you backed in the corner. But in good time you’ll find yourself always hoping for the best, while completely armed for the worst of outcomes. Your future self will thank you.