When we’re having a discussion with others, we may subconsciously be trying to just ‘win’. Disagreements can sometimes trigger our ego which drives us to drop into our coping habits – defensiveness, passive aggression etc. That could make others feel frustrated or unheard, so there’s got to be a better way. Here are some tips to help you agree to disagree in the best way you can:
Identify the middle ground.
To agree to disagree, you need to find the middle ground you can both stand on. Disagreeing with someone can sometimes make us feel threatened by how different they are. Stating both your common grounds and differences can help you feel more comfortable and noticed by the other person. And while meeting in the middle requires some compromise, it doesn’t necessarily mean it needs to trigger discomfort.
Have a sit down and decide on the boundaries you’re both comfortable imposing. Having a clear definition of what is acceptable and what isn’t is crucial in reaching a respectful conclusion. It could be things like avoiding certain trigger words, actions or even topics. Boundaries can help you both feel safe to carry on with your relationship and fortify your trust bond.
Honesty is the best policy.
Be transparent about your feelings and point of view with the other party involved. This will make things much easier to resolve whilst minimizing resentment. While being honest is important, it should be done from a place of kindness and respect. Your honesty doesn’t have to be brutal to get your point across.
Ensure mutual respect.
In order to maintain a healthy relationship, you need mutual respect. Respect ensures that you do not cross boundaries – it encourages openness and honesty. It is key to creating and maintaining any relationship, especially when in disagreement. If you don’t think the respect is reciprocated, it may be a good idea to re-evaluate the boundaries you have with the other person to ensure your safety.