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POD: Self-improvement

Disagreeing Better

Has contempt replaced conversation?

As mass media infiltrates our lives, our communication skills are waning, too often these days arguments with people we disagree with feel impossible. Have we lost the ability to have friendships with people with different views? Has outrage culture and today’s extreme politics driven division in society? What can we do to combat this?

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PODCASTS

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A Guide to Disagreeing Better

(37 mins )

Why do we hold our opponents in contempt? Former politician Douglas Alexander believes that disagreement is good, it’s how the best arguments get refined. But, today, public discourse has become so ill-tempered, snide and lacking in respect that we are no longer engaged in a battle of ideas but a slanging match. He talks to people with personal tales about how we might all raise our game and disagree better. BBC Radio 4 Seriously

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Conflict. How to have More Productive Disagreements

(44 mins )

Have you ever had one of those arguments — whether with a friend or a colleague, a loved one or a perfect stranger — that you both vehemently disagree, and it boils your blood? Too often these days, arguments with people we disagree with feel impossible. We never solve anything but seem to succeed in hurting someone’s feelings. But what if it didn’t have to be that way? Buster Benson helps you have hard conversations in your relationships, engage people with different political viewpoints, and disagree with dignity.

 

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Managing Conflict

(28 mins )

How should businesses deal with workplace quarrels? At a time when the nation seems increasingly divided and hot-tempered, is there a way to bring harmony among staff when there are differences of opinion and personality? Evan Davis and his guests explore what can go wrong and look for some possible solutions. In a very cooperative spirit, naturally.BBC Radio 4 Bottom Line

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VIDEOS

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Why it’s worth listening to people you disagree with.

(11 mins )

We get stronger, not weaker, by engaging with ideas and people we disagree with, says Zachary R. Wood. In an important talk about finding common ground, Wood makes the case that we can build empathy and gain understanding by engaging tactfully and thoughtfully with controversial ideas and unfamiliar perspectives. “Tuning out opposing viewpoints doesn’t make them go away,” Wood says. “To achieve progress in the face of adversity, we need a genuine commitment to gaining a deeper understanding of humanity.”

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10 ways to have a better conversation

(11 mins )

Celeste Headlee has worked as a radio host for decades, and she knows the ingredients of a great conversation: Honesty, brevity, clarity and a healthy amount of listening. In this insightful talk, she shares 10 useful rules for having better conversations. “Go out, talk to people, listen to people,” she says. “And, most importantly, be prepared to be amazed.”

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How to disagree productively and find common ground

(14 mins )

Julia Dhar offers three techniques to reshape the way we talk to each other so we can start disagreeing productively and finding common ground — over family dinners, during work meetings and in our national conversations.

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ARTICLES

5 steps to a truly open-minded debate

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If everyone had the same opinion, then the world would be very boring. Instead of viewing people with different views as obstinate, Jim Stone, Ph.D., a Washington-based productivity expert, asks: What if you tried to engage them in conversation to find out what’s behind their thinking? Here is his five-step approach.

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Build Stronger Relationships, learn to disagree more.

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Roger Dean Duncan interviews Arthur C Brooks about his book Love Your Enemies – How decent people can save America from a culture of contempt. For Forbes.

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