How to deal with an argumentative person.

How to deal with an argumentative person.

Know how to spot one?

Whether it’s a romantic partner, co-worker, in-law, or just someone you are in frequent contact with who always expresses the yin to your yang, the chronically disputatious person can be annoying, to say the least. People are bound to disagree with each other from time to time, but when someone constantly argues with you, it suggests that the problem isn’t with your relationship, but with that bickerer. Imagine that a friend asks you for advice on how to make fried chicken. As you reveal the secrets to your best family recipe, the friend interrupts you and suggests in know-it-all fashion that it’s better to use corn flakes than bread crumbs.

If your friend is such an expert, then why ask your advice in the first place?

When such antagonistic behavior isn’t just a one-time thing, new research on anger suggests, something else might be at the root of the problem but there may be ways you can deal with it.

Kansai University of Japan’s Masaya Takebe and colleagues (2016) conducted a four-month, follow-up study on a sample of 75 undergraduates (2/3 female) to investigate the predictive relationship of anger rumination, or the tendency to mull over angry feelings, on levels of anger as a personality trait and “anger-in,” or the tendency to suppress one’s angry feelings. Theoretically, personality traits are viewed as stable and unchanging, so the interesting feature of this study was its approach of seeing whether the cognitive state of anger rumination could affect the level of anger as a personality disposition. The theory behind the study was that people who ruminate over the things that make them angry would become even higher in trait anger over time, and at the same time, they would need to work harder to push those feelings away.

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