Some people just love to argue. Since you won't always be able to avoid them, learn some techniques for defusing the argument and keeping the peace.

To complete this How-To you will need:

Defusing techniques
A willingness to walk away

Step 1: Understand people who like to argue

Understand that argumentative people, especially if they tend to become aggressive, have a deep-rooted personal problem. They like to argue, and they like to win -- period.

Tip: Unlike people who enjoy the mental exercise of debate, argumentative people argue because of the sense of power and control it gives them.

Step 2: Be aware and engage defusing techniques

Recognize that the person who started to argue with you may be this kind of person. Begin to employ defusing techniques.

Step 3: Don't engage in an argument with them

Don't get drawn into an argument or, if already drawn in, try to win it. You won't -- at least not without causing the argument to escalate and possibly turn nasty.

Tip: Never let an argument become personal by using words that attack the person, and never say, "You are wrong."

Step 4: Listen to them

Listen to what the person has to say and don't cut them off, which will only anger them.

Step 5: Show that you are listening and respect their view

Use words that show you respect their views and repeat their main points to show that you are listening.


Tip: Some positive phrases to use are "I believe what you are saying is...," "I understand," and "Thanks for letting me know your opinion."

Step 6: Use self-control and stay focused on the issues

Use self-control and stay focused on the issues being discussed. Don't let the person turn the discussion back into a no-win argument.

Step 7: Walk away

If this person is determined to argue, say something neutral, like, "I'll have to give this more thought," and walk away.