The particularly opinionated seem to always be right, and seem to always tell you about it. The ones who are explicit in their approach of doing so are novices however. With time they get better at coercing you to agree, and sneakier at telling you how right they are.
The black belts at that game are those who make you believe they operate in expressing their opinions in an objective, unbiased, and non-committed manner. Somehow though, their opinionated stance always seems to fall within that objective, unbiased, and non-committed frame which they set up.
There are lessons you can take from those who encouraged you to believe in the supposed humility behind their opinionated stances.
Apart from becoming an astute cherry picker of objective facts to back one’s biased opinion, there is more trickery behind the facade of those who misrepresent objectivity to be on their side.
One nuanced approach many who attempt to change your mind use is to counter-intuitively make their opponents seem objective, intelligent, and fair in their own right.
This article is about the specific event of introducing a newcomer to those whom you disagree with.
Forceful Disagreement Seems to Encourage Us to Seek What Caused Such Force
Managing the audience’s interest is an important part of getting them on your side in disagreements. Well reasoned arguments alone only go so far when you’re up against someone who also has solid reason behind their arguments but also manages to entertain at your expense.
Sometimes we’re tempted to be forceful in our presentation of the ones we disagree with. We describe them with unappealing adjectives, then go on to present our personal opinions on how they think, look, and act.
As we do, it seems that we encourage our listeners to check what about those individuals makes us so enraged. We lower ourselves to being emotionally affected by someone who disagrees with us, and we risk our judgement to weaken in spite of it.
Those listening on as we berate those we disagree with will likely go on to act in one of two ways.
- They’ll either be pressured to become your “yes man,” and blindly support you in your emotion fueled quest to be right.
- They’ll be enticed to check what about your adversary’s position has you so enraged.
Those who blindly support your judgments and decisions may bring you comfort in the short term, but will inevitably lead you toward fiction rather than fact. They will not serve to encourage you to be objective in the stances that you take. The opinions of those surrounded by “yes men,” always seem to gravitate toward becoming extreme.
The Discovery of Your Adversary’s Position Will Seem Novel and Effective
Those who perceive your emotion and rage to be weakness will want to investigate what got under your skin for themselves. They’ll view your inability to control your anger as an inability to control the debate or argument with calm reason.
These listeners will be entertained by your fury, and will perceive your opponents to be the fuel of your entertaining rage. In response, they’ll be enticed to check out your opponent’s stance on the matter.
If your listeners find your opponent to in fact be acting calmly, in control, and objectively, you’d be off to a bad start in swindling the opinions of that third party. You will become the entertainment which your opponent takes advantage of at your expense.
You will not seem to be in control, and will come off as reactionary to the things that your adversary does. To the ones looking from afar, you will not be perceived as an ideological leader they’d be willing to stand behind.
You Shouldn’t Be Boring As Brick, Just Less Enraged Than Those You Disagree With
In your attempts to introduce newcomers to disagreements you have with others at work, school, or in your circle of friends, ensure that you show better qualities of intellectual leadership than those you disagree with.
Such qualities of intellectual leadership are ones you probably already know about. For the sake of this article’s truncation, know that berating your opponent, being angry in your presentation of fact, and opinionated in your portrayal of your adversaries are poor qualities to show as a leader.
If your opponent turns out to be the rageful and emotional one, you’ll find yourself having more leeway to play around with their emotions. You can throw in a couple of jokes, jabs, and laughs in your disagreements with the highly opinionated and emotional.
Since they’d possess little in the way of good argumentative etiquette, you’d be able to use their brashness against them as entertainment. For those listening on, you’d be presenting the package of good, reasoned, arguments as well as entertainment at the expense of the enraged opponent.
However, do not become the one who is more emotional, brash, and angry. Through you may capture the attention of those who are new to the disagreement, their discovery of a calm, objective adversary will put you in a bad spot.