How to convey your opinion

How to convey your opinion and not offend others: 4 effective tips

Hurrying to express our own opinion can offend others. In particular, raising his voice, unconsciously criticizing. The result is an outraged and offended interlocutor and many questions as to why this happened. In order to have as few similar situations as possible and not only hear you, but also understand you, you should communicate your thoughts correctly. How exactly?

Tip № 1. Don’t go for personalities

Or in other words – the technique of I-statement  (“I-message”), which was proposed in the 60’s by American psychologist Thomas Gordon. Its essence is that you do not criticize, do not condemn, do not press on a person (for example: “You again…”, “Yes as much as possible…”, “You are such…” ), instead you start the conversation with phrases:  “I think … »,« «I would like…», «I think… ».

In the first case, the focus automatically shifts to someone, and consciously / unconsciously you blame the interlocutor, shift responsibility and as a result receive from him aggression, misunderstanding, resentment. Elsewhere, focus on your feelings. Make it clear to the interlocutor what is confusing, what exactly you want to convey, starting with a dialogue with “I-message”.

Tip № 2. Ask open-ended questions

Riddles, hints, closed questions – elements of a bad conversation. Unfortunately, a person cannot understand half a word or read thoughts. If you want to know information, ask the right open-ended question that will encourage others to speak.

The difference between closed and open questions:

  • The first implies an unambiguous answer (“Yes” or “No”), a dead end in the conversation; can also contribute to inadequate answers, insults:  “Did you talk to the director?”, “Did you eat the whole cake?” .
  • The second questions are aimed at a full-fledged dialogue in which both parties will interact and will be satisfied in the end:  “What did the director say?”, “Where did such a delicious cake come from?” .

Importantly. Some people sometimes find it difficult to answer open-ended questions because it is very personal. We advise you to first explain your intentions, and if there is no answer – of course, do not insist.

Tip № 3. Choose a place and time

This recommendation is the key to effective communication. Agree, it is a bad idea to start an important conversation from the doorstep, in the bus, car, elevator or on a noisy street or when the interlocutor is irritated, tired, depressed. In such circumstances, you will not be able to express your opinion – just scare the person and get a negative reaction.

We advise you to curb the desire to express your position faster and pay attention to quality. Make sure there are no mood swings, everything is fine with your well-being and choose a quiet and secluded place to communicate. A few minutes are enough to offend the interlocutor, and it takes years to establish a relationship.

Tip №4. More specifics

We recommend using the PREP (point, reason, evidence, point) structure. First, briefly state your position, then justify the reason, confirm it, and conclude by repeating the position.


  1. I think we should do…
  2. Because there are a lot of positive feedback / suggestions from sponsors…
  3. For example, (authoritative person) suggested / supported (
  4. That’s why I think we should do…

You should always speak, but to increase the chances of being heard and keep the interlocutor in the mood, we advise you to follow the tips described above.

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