Vent Strategically After an Argument
Everyone's done it—you argue with a friend, then reach out to another friend for validation. The more people you get on your side, the more correct you are, right? While a vote of support will help you feel justified in continuing to fight, it probably won't help you solve the problem. Instead, seek the viewpoint of a trusted friend not to win the argument, but to try to see the argument more clearly. When you reach out for help in a dispute, find a person who you think will be able to shed light on the other person's perspective, says Robert Gould, PhD, chair of the department of conflict resolution at Portland State University. Rather than asking her to take sides, see if she can help you to see where the other person is coming from. Just don't let this information cause you to acquiesce too soon, warns Gould. "Some people give in to other people's perspectives too easily, so use a conversation with a friend to help you discover your own perspective more deeply, too."