Three Ways to Confront a Friend … January 15, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog


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It is never wise to express your opinion and wishes to someone who is not a close friend. If you choose to do this, it will normally fall into the category of interference or condemnation.

But on those occasions when dear friends or family members are struggling, it may become necessary to confront them.

The question is, how do you do it?

  • Self-righteousness is sickening.
  • Preaching is pushy.
  • And instructing is boring.

Here are the three ways I recommend for confronting friends or loved ones:

1. Ask them, “Are you satisfied with where you are?”

One of the best things you can do for others is to get them to think again. For after all, when we are hassled, we have a tendency to shut down our brains and live off of our emotions. Just asking them if they’re satisfied can open up the floodgates to conversation.

2. Ask them, “Can I do anything to help?”

I’ve never seen a word of advice lift a burden. If you arrive with a heart to assist instead of insist, you allow humility to open the door to understanding.

Truthfully, people don’t need us to take over their lives–just help them for a little while.

3. And finally, once the conversation gets going, say, “Here’s what I hope for you.”

Criticizing bad behavior does not stimulate repentance. Believing in people is the best way to get their attention. Tell your friend what you hope for him.

Of course, people can become so overly sensitive that even these three approaches can be misinterpreted as judging.

But normally, if you ask them if they’re satisfied, if there’s anything you can do to help, and then paint a picture of what you hope they can achieve, their heart will be softened, the spirit engaged, the mind renewed and the passion to do something… rejuvenated.


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