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Monday, March 14, 2016

Don't "Agree to Disagree"

I'm sorry to say that I won't agree to disagree. Why do people use this? What is the purpose of saying this? Do people use this to try to shut down argument and get the other party to submit to their will? It may seem like an empty statement, but it is riddled with emotional manipulation. 

Agreeing to disagree is like trying to forcibly close a book. A book that can provide some deep answers and avenues to each shared argument. Saying this term is a method of escapism. It is showing that you do not want to investigate further into the discussion because it may make you feel uncomfortable and caught off guard. But this is where conversation and communion can blossom into uncharted territories. 

When you go towards the uncomfortable zone, you are allowing yourself to surrender to what is and the potential of discussion. Instead of adhering to a fixed mind set, you can choose to step back, breathe and truly engage in what the problem or perspective may be. It takes a great deal of patience, awareness and compassion to try to truly understand the essence and root of someone's perspective. Simply Agreeing to disagree is like chopping down a young tree that has the potential to produce some miraculous fruit. 

If you ever see yourself getting to the "Agree to disagree" danger zone, take a moment to truly listen and ask questions. 

Questions like:

Why would you want to agree to disagree? 
Do you want to investigate further into where our perspectives differ?
Do you have an interest in arriving towards a consensus? 
Do you have interest in exploring more of your values, principles and virtues?
Do you have an interest in being flexible with your mindset? 

The beauty is that people have so many differing perspectives and principles they live by and think by. By challenging and honestly investigating these mental processes, we can dig deeper into the massive shared spectrum of humanity. 

Asking for permission to go further in a discussion with patience, calmness and compassion will truly open up the other person. It may catch them off guard if they are use to escaping the discussion or getting "their" way in the first place. Let them know that you are more interested in honest dialogue than a wrong vs. right false dichotomy "argument". 

When you let go the need to "win" or be "right", you allow yourself to become more vulnerable and learn so many things you would normally avoid. Stop to
Analyze the self. Do not criticize the other person. Keep asking questions, but check in to make sure that both of you are all along for the ride with hidden hostility or resentment. 

We can all agree that agreeing to disagree is an unnecessary punctuation to a sentence or paragraph of massive creative potential. 


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