How to Change Someone’s Mind

How to deal with disagreements.

Source: Ketut Subiyanto/Pexels

How do you change someone’s mind? In this polarized era, your first reaction might be understandable
“you do not do that.” Especially on the endlessly debated topics of the day, especially political issues or anything that can be done politically (aka anything), people seem to be tighter than ever. And madder at her than ever. How can we even think of bringing them out of the darkness into the light? Modern brain research shows us a way to make this difficult task easier. But first, a nod to the ancient Greeks.

Article will be continued after viewing

The ancient Greeks knew something about feats of argumentative subtlety. In response to a litigious society that liked to argue about everyday things we would easily recognize today, such as the property rights of competing landowners, they developed the first courts and the first advocates, and with them the first insights into disputation. Her idea was that persuasion required two steps. First you had to agree on the problem. Then we could discuss the solution. This problem-solution structure has served people with diverse goals for two and a half millennia.

The Greeks even had a more advanced model, a 2.0 problem-solving structure, if you will, for particularly thorny problems. This model was known as the residual method. It’s a somewhat confusing name for an elegant development. In this case, the backlog is the important part. First, talk about the opposing point of view (or several if there is more than one). You present that other argument fairly briefly, and then you talk about one or two of the problems with that other position. The key is to present this opposing argument fairly. This can be difficult – try it. Logically, you may squirm when you need to argue for something you passionately disagree with. But it’s a wonderful exercise and good for the brain, so keep going anyway.

Read  How To Create A Slideshow On TikTok (The Easy Way)

Once you have presented the opposing viewpoint(s) and given a reason or two that they may not be reasonable positions, present your POV. And you leave it. No rebuttal. The effect is to appear fair to the other positions and objective to your own. You’ll find that it defuses much of the tension that usually surrounds these debates.

Article will be continued after viewing

And yet even the wisdom of the ancient Greeks is not always enough to bring the sweet light of reason into a dark and divided world. In this case, you need a third step, uncovered by modern research and taken before the other two. Surprisingly, this move makes people behave better when they argue.

Here’s how it works. Instead of jumping straight into the argument, ask people to talk about their values. It doesn’t have to be complicated. You could simply offer them a list of good things like family, honesty, thrift, obedience to the law, helping your neighbors, and remember to vote, and then ask them to rank them from most important to least important.

That’s it. Get them thinking about their values ​​and the tigers of argument more or less become kittens. Apparently, people who have talked about and reflected on their values ​​feel more centered and heard and more secure. All of this makes her more reasonable.

And wouldn’t it be nice to bring a little more sanity into today’s debates?

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button