Thursday, September 22, 2016

What do you do when someone challenges your thinking?

In conversations that become tough, fight or flight can kick in fast when a challenge is presented.  What do you do when somebody challenges your thinking?
  • I argue my point because I am correct.  I like to argue
  • I listen and pretend to agree because I hate conflict
  • I make a joke and change the subject
  • I gotta be nice, so I respond as nicely as possible.  Being nice is most important
  • I exhume every mistake from my opponent's past
  • I say nothing, then call my supervisor to protect me
  • I say, "Yeah, no.  I hear what you're saying."
  • I find one little possible reason why you are wrong and blow it out of proportion
  • I talk as much as possible, as fast as possible, for as long as possible
  • I don't listen because I am too busy refining my own point.  As soon as you hush, I'll talk
I must admit that I find myself wearing one or more of these badges on occasion.  I try to be better.  I constantly work on my listening skills.  I constantly seek to understand before I try to be understood.  Tough conversations make this challenging.

Which defense mechanism do you use when the conversation gets tough?  If you know which ones you use, you'll be able to overcome them.  When someone challenges your thinking and you are involved in a meaningful conversation, communicate that you are involved in the conversation.  When someone challenges your thinking, tell yourself, "Listen with your eyes, your ears, and your heart!"