That argument should have been a conversation

Like war, every argument has a winner and a loser. And like war, both parties are worse off, with the winner merely being less worse off.

When couples, colleagues or teammates argue, the group as a whole loses. While the winner might feel good, the losers feel a lot worse. Sure, an argument is better than leaving things unspoken and leaving tensions simmering. Sure, sometimes war is necessary and righteous. But in most cases, there is an alternative.

A conversation can also resolve disagreements. You don’t win or lose a conversation – the point is to understand the other parties better. A good conversation improves everybody’s mood and leaves everybody better off.

Several disagreements can be approached both as an argument or a conversation. Can you pause before you jump into your next argument? Could a conversation take its place? If so, what words or tone of voice would you use instead?

The ladder of happiness

Great relationships, more than anything else, make up a happy life.

Great conversation, more than anything else, make up good relationships.

Curiosity with an open mind, more than anything else, leads to good conversation.

A sense of wonder, more than anything else, makes us curious and open.

To live a happy life, more than anything else, is to step into each moment with a sense of wonder.