Y ou may be right.
On their own, these four words don't appear to be that powerful. However, when used in the heat of the moment to defuse an argument, they can work wonders!
Case in point: you're engaged in a heated argument, and your opponent is attacking. As with some forms of martial arts, you can take the strength of their attack and deflect it.
I've found this technique to be so effective because it works immediately. And it doesn't call for concessions. It merely interrupts the pattern of the attacker and proposes the theory that he or she "may" be right. When you take away their reason for arguing, the heat goes out of the moment.
You don't even need to think about whether you're "winning" or "losing" if this is a concern. These four words neutralize the situation.
Which brings to mind the countless dialogues we hear every day. You know the type I mean - the couple bickering in a restaurant. "It was Tuesday. No, it was Monday. No, it was Tuesday." By the time they get around to the story, it's lost its impact.
Often, "being right" trumps everything. Winner takes all. But what have we really won? A momentary victory, maybe, but at what cost? Any positive energy that existed earlier has been taken out of the equation - not to mention the toll this can take on a relationship over time.
According to author Steve Pavlina, the way to "win" an argument is to aim for a goal other than being right. Huh?
If you aren't trying to win the argument, then what is your goal? Pavlina suggests we set the goal of raising the other person's awareness while maintaining our own sense of calmness.
OK, let's give it a shot. According to this theory, you can deflect the opponent's attacks by focusing on their behavior. Whenever he or she tries to pigeonhole us into a negative role, simply sidestep their comments and redirect their own energy back upon them. Never defend against any of their comments.
In other words, don't attack - ever. You merely deflect the other person's attacks back to them, over and over. You become like a mirror. So the more the other person tries to attack you, the more they weaken themselves. People can't punch themselves in the face for too long.