Raise your hand if you’ve recently engaged in an insult-slinging argument that started as an attempt at a civil discussion about some hot-button issue. Many of us have, and with high-stakes elections looming, the already fiery discourse will likely only intensify.
Though it might feel satisfying in the moment, calling someone a bleeping—insert your favorite derogatory term here—is never going to help them understand your point of view. Rather, experts in persuasive communication say, it’s crucial to focus on curiosity and compassion, and to make it clear that you don’t think the person you’re talking to is the enemy—or look down on them.
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