20/04/2016 08:48 BST | Updated 20/04/2017 06:12 BST

Make Your Point Without Nagging: The Do's and Don'ts

The A-Z Challenge: Q is for Quibble. Shift negative habits, alphabetically.


Copyright: Inner Space

Can you communicate without nagging? Especially when someone neglects to do their bit, at home or at work? Or when there's a difference of opinion? Or when someone really irritates you? Do you quibble? Quibble is what we do when we find fault with small things, it's nit-picking unnecessary details.

Like me, if you're really good at nagging and quibbling, and even enjoy it - you may have realised that quibbling rarely accomplishes anything. Actually, more often than not, quibbling makes things worse. It can distract your attention away from the bigger picture, the deeper problems. It may make people think you're just being contrary and critical. And they may just get frustrated with you and avoid talking to you.

Quibbling and nagging, it's not good for relationships. It just wastes time and doesn't make you look smart. Would you like to stop quibbling? If you can't, then maybe quibble a little less, or just not be so ready to nitpick and find fault just for the sake of it? Here are a few do's and don'ts.

The Don'ts

  1. Don't sweat the stuff that doesn't matter. Choose your battles wisely. If quibbling isn't going to help you get your point across, just move on. Save your energy for 'bigger' problems, and let the small ones go.
  2. Don't let ice cubes become an iceberg. When small things do matter, it's important not to let things build up. Make your feelings known and say what you need to say. Otherwise small issues build up into bigger issues!

The Do's

  1. Do take a moment to consider. Decide if you want to let it go, speak up now, or discuss the issue at a later time. It's always good to take that space to get emotions and reactions under control and determine the most appropriate response.
  2. Do Communicate Positively. When you really need to make your point, work out the goal for the conversation. Express yourself respectfully, and try to make it a discussion so as to understand the other person's view.

Ask yourself: Why do I quibble? What do I get out of it? Often we quibble, not because there's a negative motive but because it's a habit. Maybe there's a need to control, a need to be right. If there is, then maybe you need to let go a little.

Rethink your communication habits. Think about how to communicate in a way that resolves the issue and enhances the relationship. Maybe if we worked on being happy and being respectful, then all the unnecessary quibbling might just stop!