Arguing can be healthy

Yesterday I was at dinner with a family and a few good friends of mine. The night was going great and I had a great time. I still maintain this claim despite laying into my friend hardcore and publicly at the table.

We were talking and in the middle of the conversation my good friend made a very subtle comment that was of the nature of things that everyone in city says and believe is true, but in reality it is not so. Immediately I said that he was wrong. He then rolled his eyes at me as if I was the fool for saying that. I then proceeded to explain why his claim was wrong and why I was right. He then tried to debate me of which I brought up credible articles via my smart phone backing up my claims. He then tried the classic “who is to say” argument. Now this didn’t work because in this subject I was immensely qualified to talk about it as it concerned Foreign Affairs and China of which I have a Masters Degree in Foreign Policy from the Institute of World Politics in Washington D.C. and I have studied Chinese for years. On this topic, my friend was outgunned and he made the mistake of firing a shot.

At this point he could no longer argue “who is to say” so he then turned to denial. He claimed that he never brought anything up and that it was all me and that I was overreacting. I kept my ground and stated no, that he brought it up and that I was merely arguing to show him that this point of view he had was wrong.

My friend felt a little down at the end of that night I am sure of it, but I expect that it will be a night he will learn from. Getting in arguments is actually healthy. We all sometimes believe wrong or delusional things and if our friends never argued with us then how would we ever break free from our erroneous ideas? Further, society trains us today to not argue and to always “get along” whatever the fuck that means. This is very bad, because arguing can be very healthy and further being placed in an argumentative environment from time to time keeps you from getting to emotionally hurt when you are in one.

And earth to everyone, you will get in an argument sometime; it would be much better of you to get ready for them and be able to hand them instead of trying to avoid them forever. I know what that is like. That was my mode of operation for many years. I hated arguments, and I hated fights because it could get nasty. Then I realized that this stemmed because I was insecure, and that further I wanted everyone to like me. That was a very shitty value to have. Not everyone will like you, no matter what you do, so ditch that value. It is trash.

Further, sometimes pain is good: not just for you, but also for your friends. Sometimes your friends might believe something wrong or do something that is not healthy. Are you going to let them continue that behavior? Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe you should say something.

My point today is that arguing is not intrinsically evil. There are many benefits that come from arguing. I look at myself and see how I came out of delusional ideas because I had people get in my face and argue with me. If people never did this to me who knows how many crazy things I still might believe today, and further I would not be the person I am now.

Get out there and start an argument lol,

 

-Nolan

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