How to Win at Arguing With Your Partner or Anyone Else (for that Matter)

The other day, I wandered across a post in a social media group that caught my attention. Like most posts on these platforms, it starts with someone sharing their perspective of an experience that they had. In most cases, they’re not really interested in hearing another perspective on their issue. Usually, validation and approval is what they’re seeking. They want to let others know, exactly, what they’re feeling. Their retelling of the experience might include little detail, which doesn’t give the onlookers much satisfaction. However, letting it all out or venting is the way (in my Mandalorian voice) in which these things work.


The readers wants all of the juicy details to decide on whether or not to fully invest time and energy into reading the post (and the comments). That post, in particular, just so happened to be one of those posts, that had the necessary elements to draw others into the fray. As I read the post, I asked a clarifying question to determine how clear I was in understanding the poster’s point of view. I didn’t want to assume that I had all of the information based on what I had read in front of me.


The issue with assuming that we know what the other person is thinking is a recipe for disaster, which leads to further disconnection and misunderstanding between those involved. In my opinion, it’s a lack of respect for the other person. I believe that we owe it to ourselves to put ourselves in a position of receiving what we need from the other person. It doesn’t mean that we have to agree. Simply, that we’re open to hearing their perspective. Hence, the clarifying question is bringing clarity and understanding into the mix. Ultimately, landing us in a position of alignment and improved connection.

Often it requires time to disrupt and interrupt the chaos created by disagreements in our relationships. A willingness to engage from a place of curiosity is important to building a bridge. Without this bridge, the flow of traffic is non existent. What happens when traffic is not moving?

Photo by Aayush Srivastava on

It leads to anger, frustration, resentment, anxiety, etc. These feelings cause us to go into fight or flight mode. That’s right the stress response kicks in, which impacts the ability to communicate our feelings and needs with a level of reason. When reason goes out the door, you can forget about a reasonable resolution. If we’re not in tune with ourselves, we’ll continue to spiral out of control until we return to ourselves. If you struggle with staying caught in your emotions, listen to my podcast episode on releasing negative emotions.

As that energy subsides, we have the ability to return to listening for understanding, clarifying for understanding, and providing our point of view to bring about a resolution for the situation. At the end of the day, a resolution is the what we want. Working towards that resolution with a win-win in mind is the way for winning the arguments, which doesn’t fit the social media drama model. And, there’s nothing wrong with that!

What’s Really Going On?

Have you ever stopped to ask yourself this question “what’s, really, going on?” More often than not, I find myself affording perception the opportunity to become reality. When in all actuality, reality is perception until the lens changes.

I like words. They possess the capacity to provide richness and depth to a conversation. However, chaos and division might ensue when word choice and usage lead to misunderstandings. My goal is create a clear picture. In order to have the same lens, we’ll use Merriam-Webster as a point of reference for perception and reality

Perception often breathes life into our reality based on our attitudes, beliefs, and experiences. These are our points of reference for approaching our lives. In this instance, I included in the second set of words.


Variance exists between how these organizations define these words; even though, they are the same. I have no idea why. Nor, will I take the time to find out. The lenses lead to their selection.

Back to attitudes, beliefs, and experiences. Although these three are truth for us in many instances, it doesn’t mean that they are truth for others. Case in point. Stop signs are red; unless, an individual with color blindness is the one looking at it. The stop sign is no longer red from that person’s perception; even though, the reality is stop signs are red. But, only to sighted individuals.

Let’s take a closer look. Shall we?

If my reality is based on my perception and your reality is based on your perception, that sounds like a recipe for disaster in a world where we believe that our reality is the absolute truth. I’m sure you’ll have seen this play out time and time again in this virtual world. Take for instance, social media algorithms place a tint over our lenses. Now a commonly viewed situation is causing chaos in an individual’s reality without disturbing the harmony of another. The next thing you know, Facebook drama and Twitter wars abound. Instead of viewing the world through someone else’s lens, there’s a tendency to dig in our heels to not yield space or fortify our walls to avoid a collapse.

In doing so, seeking first to understand then to be understood (as suggested in the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is left null and void. Imagine a society of people, who seek to understand and who challenge their attitudes, beliefs, and experiences.

Can you see it as clearly as I see it through my lens?

I hope so.

It’s a peaceful place that’s bright enough for all of us to rock our lenses.