I have to admit: I used to LOVE arguing and discussing everything. And because I read a lot and get into debates a lot I usually have the better arguments at the end of the day.
But do you know what? Even with the best points on my side I NEVER changed someone´s opinion. After the discussion was over they were usually just angry but not convinced of my point of view.
Even if I could prove someone wrong with scientific studies their opinion never changed. And even if someone else could prove me wrong I was very unwilling to change my opinion.
And over the years I came to the realization that arguing is a waste of time. Once someone made up their mind it is almost impossible to change their opinion.
You could waste hours and hours and hours of your life looking up points, debating and getting angry about the other person – especially if it is an emotional topic you are arguing about. It doesn´t make sense to waste all this precious time for nothing.
You will not feel better after the debate. You may even have damaged the relationship between the other person and yourself. Your mind will spin endlessly to create new points that support your opinion even hours after the argument itself is over.
But the willingness to keep arguing is still inside of me. Whenever a debate comes up I am very tempted to join and to voice my opinion. Sometimes I am even provoked to tell the world what I think about a topic just to start an argument.
For example, there are several anti-vaxxers in my family and they are very emotional about the whole topic. They also know that I am sporadically making fun of anti-vaxxers. Their arguments contradict each other and nothing of their conspiracy theory makes sense at all.
In the past we used to get involved into heated debates about how not vaccinating children can become dangerous for themselves and everybody around them. After the arguments I was usually tired and angry.
I have found a better way to avoid time-consuming and pointless debates. Whenever someone tries to provoke me with their statement I just answer “Okay.”
I do not agree with them. I do not point out how dumb I think they are. I just say “Okay” in a neutral tone. This word can literally mean anything from “I agree with you,” over “I acknowledged your opinion,” to “Kiss my ass, you dumb fuck.”
You can not argue against someone who just answers with “Okay.” You would feel dumb within three seconds.
This strategy works especially well online. I LOVE answering to 300+ words of provocation with just “Okay,” not revealing if I have even read the whole thing. It is even funnier if the person who tried to start the debate types pages and pages of hate in their rage and just gets another “Okay” back.
Bottom line: If you argue with someone or not doesn´t make any difference. You can not change other people´s believes.
It does not matter what they think of you. Or what they believe in. The only thing that should count in your life are your own opinions. You can be deaf to everyone else (I even advise you to if you want to be successful).
Here are a few examples of how to use this strategy in real life:
“Training six days a week will lead to overtraining! You will not gain any muscle but instead get weaker and eventually die!”
“Eating meat is not only bad for your health but it will also ruin the planet!”
“You are a sexist, racist son of a bitch!”
“You can not get rich without a college degree!”
“The earth is secretly run by aliens.”
See? No point in wasting your time trying to change other people´s mind.
Instead use your time to read more books or blogs and gain more knowledge you can use to your advantage.
Stay strong, fellow superhero!