When Sparks Fly: 7 Phrases To Defuse Arguments

Lifestyle & community

June 12, 2019 11:02 By Fabiosa

The tongue like a sharp knife... kills without drawing blood.

Keeping peace isn’t always easy since quarrels may sometimes appear out of nowhere. Usually, partners feel they are unheard, or their point of view is misunderstood. Sometimes disagreements go too far, and people simply forget the root cause.

Luckily, psychologists determined that there are antidote phrases that make a person reconsider the defensive position, when it is difficult to stop all those hurtful words, and direct the quarrel to a reasonable end.

1. What do you lack for happiness?

Pretty Vectors / Shutterstock.com

You open the door to find a compromise. This is care. This is how you express your concern about your partner’s problems.

You may need time to come up with the right solution. But you will be surprised how its search will bring you closer.

2. I feel...

“I feel this is a bad idea because...” sounds softer than “This is a bad idea!” This is an excellent way to make an indirect statement in any conversation. Your opponent is less likely to interpret that you are attacking his opinion.

State your reasoning. Let it sound not as the standard, but as a process of exchanging your thoughts, opinions, ideas. You lose control over the conversation when your partner feels attacked. When you say “I feel,” you adjust your emotional mood.

3. This is how I understand you…

r.kathesi / Shutterstock.com

Repeat your partner’s point of view. Make sure you understand it correctly. Find out why the person thinks like this. If you think differently, explain using phrase number 2.

It is essential to convince the person that you want to understand everything. Let him speak as much as possible. This will take the conversation to a trust level.

4. What can I do for you?

If someone shares a problem, he most likely just wants to be heard. This person understands that the problem won’t be solved immediately, but it is necessary to speak out at this very moment.

One of the best ways to make sure that the monologue doesn’t turn into accusations is to let know that you want to fix it. Focus on what can be done, not on what is being done.

5. You may be right

Snipergraphics / Shutterstock.com

Discussions become conflicts when someone is too stubborn and unwilling to accept other points of view. Such a relationship doesn’t bring any benefit.

Try the phrase “You may be right.” It will help you show that you are ready to listen. Even if it seems that the truth is still on your side, make sure you pay attention to the other opinion. This will calm down the situation just because the opponent won’t feel rejected.

6. Let's take a breather

It is important to realize when the situation is heating up and is about explode.

During a pause from the argument, you give each other a chance to cool down and gather your thoughts. However, the issue still needs to be resolved. You should immediately set the time of the next “negotiations.” “Let's stop this conversation until the evening.” This will make it clear that you aren’t postponing the problem indefinitely, but on the contrary, you want to solve it with a fresh mind.

7. Let's eat first

Valenty / Shutterstock.com

For example, ice cream will cool you off literally. It will also make you a bit happier. Drink coffee, water, or yogurt – these liquids will calm you down from the inside.

Before resuming your conversation, you should satisfy your basic physical needs – eat and quench your thirst. It's not uncommon for people to get agitated because they missed lunch.

Garder Elena / Shutterstock.com

Stopping the quarrel isn’t as difficult as it seems. You should just learn to say the right things. Don’t rush to avoid these tips, thinking they won’t help you. Read this post together with your partner and use the recommendations as a team.


The material in this article is for informational purposes only and does not replace the advice of a certified specialist.