Sam Littlefair

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  • language

This article has a nice summary of how to navigate a disagreement with someone, using the acronym "HEAR":

H = Hedge your claims, even when you feel very certain about your beliefs. It signals a recognition that there are some cases or some people who might support your opponent’s perspective.

E = Emphasize agreement. Find some common ground even when you disagree on a particular topic. This does not mean compromising or changing your mind, but rather recognizing that most people in the world can find some broad ideas or values to agree on.

A = Acknowledge the opposing perspective. Rather than jumping in to your own argument, devote a few seconds to restating the other person’s position to demonstrate that you did indeed hear and understand it.

R = Reframing to the positive. Avoid negative and contradictory words, such as “no,” “won’t” or “do not.” At the same time, increase your use of positive words to change the tone of the conversation.

From my experience, I feel like this is pretty solid advice.

© Sam Littlefair 2024