Arguments are a part of life. But how you handle them makes all the difference between harmony and chaos in your household. Enjoy more peace in your life by learning how to disagree effectively and fairly!

It’s hard to avoid every argument, but you can keep them from getting out of control and becoming fights. Fighting destroys the peace in your home, but arguing effectively gives everyone a voice and a chance to be heard. If you avoid fighting back, the other person has little to fight about. An argument and a fight are not the same thing.

What Are You Arguing About, Anyway?

Fights often resort to name-calling, underhanded tactics, and emotional or physical violence. To keep an argument from escalating to a fight, focus on what you’re really arguing about. If you keep the discussion on track and focused on a specific issue (and not the person), then there’s less of a chance that it’ll turn into a fight.

Arguments, when handled effectively, can bring the members of your household closer together. It’s healthy for everyone to have the opportunity to express his or her opinion. Arguing is necessary, within reason, and should be allowed, as long as both parties strive to stay positive and peaceful.

In fact, encouraging your loved ones to seek win-win resolutions to their challenges with each other teaches them a valuable skill that will serve them well throughout their lifetime.

When you argue, remember to:

  • Stay on topic.
  • Address the concern instead of attacking the other person.
  • Listen to what the other person has to say.
  • Think about the seriousness of the issue. Will it really matter later on?
  • Try to discover a win-win solution where everyone walks away satisfied.
  • Agree to disagree if you can’t come to a resolution.
  • Avoid holding a grudge.

Turn Arguments into Positive Discussions

Arguing is an art form. If you argue in a positive manner, you’ll rarely hurt the feelings of others. Plus, you’ll avoid long-term resentment in your friendships and family life. Talk openly about the issues you’re facing, your worries, and the challenges in your life. Honest communication is vital!

To prevent a fight, pay attention to the words you say and the body language that comes with them. Your facial expressions and other nonverbal communication can be more hurtful than the words you say. When arguing with anyone, remain non-threatening in your words, tone and body language.

It’s very important that you respect one another. Arguing doesn’t have to be ugly or mean. If you care about each other, you’ll be able to argue without causing emotional or physical pain to each other. Realizing what’s really important can make arguing less traumatic.

If an argument becomes heated, it’s often best to separate for a little while. Calm down and address the situation later. After cooling off, you’ll likely be more rational about the issue you’re trying to work out. This stops you from getting too passionate about an issue and losing sight of what matters.

Above all, remember that no argument is worth destroying relationships or hurting each other’s feelings. Seek a solution that’s agreeable to everyone and maintain control of your emotions. Try to see the situation from the other person’s point of view. If you do, the arguments in your home will lead to peace and family harmony instead of destructive fighting.