3 tips on having difficult conversations.

 

This holiday season I know will be one for the ages. I also know that conversations will be had that will be laced with fire. Here's some ideas that could help.

 

Hey, guys, this is Xavier. Listen, we are steadily approaching this holiday season, getting ready for Thanksgiving and Christmas, and I wanted to shoot you a quick video to kind of help you get through some tough conversations this holiday season.

And whether it's political or it doesn't necessarily matter what you're discussing, there's always some sort of argument that comes up every single holiday, right?

Every time a family gets together. So I want to give you some tools that you can use this holiday season in all of your conversations. So let's get started. Number one, this is important, guys. You have to check your emotions at the door. Got to check your emotions at the door. If you're not going to check your emotions at the door, there's no reasonable conversation that can be had. The very idea that you're having a discussion with someone with a different viewpoint than you dictates that we are passionate with our idea and we're passionate about the things that we think and our viewpoints.

It doesn't make them right, but it does make them ours. But if I'm going to have a discussion, I know that it's going to be some sort of discussion. I have to make a very concerted effort to check my emotions at the door.

There is a great book called Love and Respect Dr Emerson, but he makes a comment in the book and he says, you can be right in what you're saying, but wrong at the top of your voice.

How many times we talk to people and we definitely wanted to hear what they were saying and what they were saying was actually right. But because there was so much anger and frustration behind the comment, we actually refused to hear.

So if you're going to listen, if you're going to hear someone, if you're going to have these discussions during this holiday season, check emotions at the door. They don't really have any place in attempting to persuade someone to your viewpoint. OK, here's number two. Remember to guys show empathy now, empathy does not require me to agree. Empathy requires me to understand your viewpoint. I'll say it again, right? Empathy doesn't mean agreement because I show you empathy because that's it.

And that's interesting. I understand or I see exactly where you're coming from. Or if I was viewing the world from your viewpoint, what you're saying makes all the sense in the world. It's just letting the person know that you understand the position that they're coming from. So if you're talking about something really sensitive. Right. So I use this example, but let's say you're talking with folks that are pro-life and some folks are pro-choice.

If you're if you are a pro-life person, the best thing you can do is to understand the the perspective of someone that's pro-choice doesn't mean you agree with it, but at least show that you understand.

And if you view the world the way that they view it, which doesn't mean it's right or wrong, it simply means this is the filter for which they see the world. And if they see the world through this filter, then exactly you understand exactly where they're coming from. Does that make sense?

So you got to have some empathy for people that you're talking to, that you're going to have very sensitive discussions or you're going to have, you know, some kind of control debate. You do have to have empathy. You do have to show that you do understand where the other person is coming from, not just in words, but understand the emotion and understand the perspective. This is going to give you an outlook. It doesn't mean that you agree with the perspective that they have.

It doesn't mean that you're agreeing with the things that they're saying. But you absolutely want to show them that you understand why they feel the way that they do.

All right. Number three is this. CommonGround, guys, if you can find common ground with your with the person that you're speaking with, a family member, friend, stranger in the grocery store, it doesn't necessarily matter. Find the thing that you can't if you can't agree on. Right.

This here in America, we just finished one of the.

Most widely popularized elections are anticipating elections in my lifetime. I mean, we've just never seen anything like it.

And what's interesting is, as I had conversations with the individuals that believed differently than I did politically when we began to talk and I began to ask these questions and listen to what they were saying to me, we had more things in common than not, but.

They've been spun a different way, and when I would tell a person, I'll give you an example, a gentleman asks me, you know, he says, well, you know, are you against abortion? And I said, yes, I'm against abortion. He said, well, how can you be a part of this party if you're against abortion? I said, well, because.

I don't know one person that's a part of this party that agrees with terminating a life of, you know, an expected pregnancy.

I don't I don't know anybody that agrees with that. But I do know people that that believe that it's their choice to do so, that that I don't have a right to tell them what to do with their body. But I don't I don't agree with abortion. And the Germans face just dropped. He said, I've never, never heard it put that way right. And it's not that I'm just so smart, but I was trying to get him to understand that no folks on this particular topic, these folks aren't you know, they're not running around here saying, hey, go go get an abortion.

That's not their thing either. Right? They don't agree with that. But they do believe that it's a lady's choice to make that decision and not mine to make.

And we found common ground with both of us detesting this particular.

Act, right, so we neither one of us agreed with that, and so we were able to have some great conversation once we were able to find the one thing that we actually agreed on when talking about that particular topic.

So it's important to find common ground with whoever you're talking to because it's not always about the combative or trying to persuade someone to think the way that you do. There's an old saying that says a man convinced against his will is of the same opinion. Still, if someone feels strongly about the topic, it doesn't matter what facts you bring.

We saw that with, unfortunately, the political climate here in the United States. Doesn't matter what facts you brought to the table, a person felt emotionally the way that they felt. And it's amazing because a lot of times in these discussions, facts don't matter. They just don't matter to people that matter that you can show them that one plus one equals two. If they believe it equals four, that's just what they believe. And so the facts don't matter.

So if you guys can follow these three simple pointers, you're going to have some great discussion this holiday season.

So let's review really quick one. Check your emotions at the door. Your emotions have no place when you're trying to have some good discussion with friends or family or even strangers. If you really want to get your point across, you got to check your emotions because chances are they're going to say something that's going to trigger you. And if you know what your triggers are, then you have to be able to check them and check your emotion so that you stay open to listening.

No, to show empathy. When you show empathy, that means I'm listening with the intent to understand, not the intent to respond. I'll say it again. When you're showing empathy, you're listening for with the intent to understand. I just want to understand where you're coming from. I just want to see your perspective. I still hold what I hold to be evident and true in my life. But I do want to hear where you're coming from.

Right. So, again, show empathy. Empathy does not mean I agree. Empathy simply says I understand and then finally find common ground. Once you can find common ground with anyone that you're talking to, you find the one thing that you agree on. Oftentimes you will see. You only disagree on about one percent of whatever it is and 99 percent or high percentile high 90s, that you guys have things that you do agree on and, you know, you can find that common ground there.

And guys, if you can begin to utilize, just try one at a time, first conversation, check your emotions, then show some empathy, then find some common ground. If you put these into practice on a regular basis, you're going to have some great discussions with your friends, families and strangers alike. All right, guys, that's all I have for now. I really appreciate you guys. Appreciate you guys. If you think someone else needs this content, hey, feel free to share it.

You can follow me on social media @AskXavierJ at Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter. Feel free to follow me. And if I can help you in any way, definitely reach out until next time you guys take care of yourselves and have an amazing, an amazing holiday season. Take care.

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/AskXavierJ/

 
 
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