This series on Developing Maturity focuses on finding ways to develop and grow. Maturity is not just a way to set yourself apart in your career; being mature enhances virtually every aspect of your life. This series is inspired by eqi.org
Validate Other People: Most people would rather be understood and/or validated than be correct about an argument. Quite often, emotions in an argument are heightened when one feels not only that their point isn’t valued—but that they aren’t valued. When both people feel they are valued and seen as an equal by the other person, a great deal of the “sting” of the argument is neutralized. It can help you turn an argument into an agreement, or at least a mutual decision to “agree to disagree.” As with the previous point, part of Emotional Intelligence comes from your ability to discern the perspective of another person. When you can recognize that the other person has the right to their opinion and you can respectfully disagree—and discuss, you show your level of Emotional Maturity.
- Validating can be done by genuinely stating one of the following phrases. Any of them can sound like sarcasm if not delivered carefully; tread lightly.
- “I appreciate that you have that point of view.”
- “From what I understand of your point…”
- By stating what you understand of the other person’s position, you show that you’re listening and that you are trying to understand them.
- “I still just don’t understand your point of view. Do you mind explaining it a little differently?” This one really only works if they haven’t really explained or have explained very little.
- You don’t have to be obvious about validating the other person; you can make your point respectfully while reiterating some of their points to clarify WHY you don’t agree.
- “The reason I don’t agree is because…” This is better than “Well, you’re just wrong.”
- It shows that you’ve been listening and that you have perhaps considered their point of view.
- You can always “agree to disagree.” You don’t want to be too easy to convince (which means you lack conviction), and you don’t want to be too stubborn. There will be a point in which you or the other person will not “meet in the middle” or will fail to agree for some reason. By respecting the other person (as well as yourself), you show Emotional Maturity.
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