What You Say When You Can’t Agree, But Want To Continue The Discussion
by Gene Griessman, Ph.D.
If the other individual has expressed a point of view that you can’t agree with, and you’ve had a chance to say what you think, often the best thing to do is to move on. Otherwise, you are like two dogs chasing each other around a table. You could do one more loop, but you know it wouldn’t do any good.
I’ve heard marriage counselors use the same analogy to describe quarrels between spouses. Most every couple goes round and round a few times. Wise partners recognize when they have gone around too many times, and one or both individuals will pull out of the loop.
Couples whose relationships are doomed can’t seem to do that. They just keep going round and round, getting angrier and more frustrated each lap. You might just save your marriage, friendship, relationship if can learn how to break out of the loop.
One way is to use the power phrase in the next paragraph. Incidentally, you can use the same power phrase in negotiations.
The other evening Rachel Maddow, whose well known for her liberal views, was doing an interview on her MSNBC show with Michael Steel, former chairman of the Republican Party. Maddow and Steel had both explained their respective views, and were starting to chase each other in a circle. Very courteously Maddow said: “I get your point, and you get mine. Could we move to another point?”
This is a great agree-to-disagree statement. Try it out next time you reach an impasse with your spouse, good friend, or with someone who’s across the table from you at the negotiating table.
It works for two reasons. One. It’s respectful. You tell the other person that you listened, and that he/she made a point. Two. It breaks you out of the tiresome, round-and-round loop.
Here it is again. “I get your point, and you get mine. Can we move to another point?”
–Gene Griessman is an internationally known keynote speaker, actor, and consultant. His video “Lincoln on Communication” is owned by thousands of corporations, libraries, and government organizations. He has spoken at conventions all over the world. To learn more about his presentations, contact us at 404-256-5927 or [email protected]
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