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Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Sonsowey - 12-15-2013 05:31 PM

So I wouldn't say I have the standard beliefs of "red pill" guys, but I don't have the standard beliefs of "blue pill" people either. I'm not a Democrat or a Republican. So my beliefs don't fall into the common dichotomies.

This really gets me in lots of arguments. Just stating a simple opinion that doesn't fall in line with whatever group I'm in is almost always treated like an aggressive move. A standard "Red pill" example, and a mild one at that, is stating that I believe eating lots of meat is healthy and grains are unhealthy. People often flip on me. And I of course have reasons to back up my argument. Which usually makes people class me as a dick, or confrontational, or "contrarian".

Really, "contrarian" is something I'm called a lot. People seem to think my beliefs are so out there that I can't really believe them, and that I'm just trying to get a rise out of people.

It would make things "smoother" in my life to just keep my mouth shut, but I would feel like a pussy doing so.

Is my compulsion to share my opinions when they don't fit into the norm something I should try to control? I never have wanted to do that. And finding like-minded people has been an impossible task. The best I have been able to do is find open-minded people, who are rare.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - johnwu - 12-15-2013 05:41 PM

"Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment. "
-Benjamin Franklin


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Ensam - 12-15-2013 05:57 PM

"If a battle cannot be won, do not fight it."
-Sun Tzu

Personally I adopt a Socratic style and ask leading questions whenever people start discussing ideas I disagree with. The thing I like about that approach is it comes off as less arrogant (assuming you ask the questions in a calm, non-confrontational style) and it really gets people to question their own beliefs. But really most of the time I just let it go.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Andy_B - 12-16-2013 02:34 AM

The short answer is, there's a fine line between being a pushover and being a social retard.

While it can seem like a good idea to self-censor a lot in social situations, you need to ask yourself "are these people really worth it?" A lot of the time, whatever you think might come from being polite (e.g. friends, a job, a GF) isn't really worth it. For example, let's say you're a free market dude and you shut up about your libertarian beliefs because everyone at your school is a hardcore communist and you want to fit in. You may salvage friendships by doing this, but now you're stuck with friends you don't see eye to eye with. Is that better than having NO friends? Well, probably... but is transferring to a different school where people think differently really such a drastic act?

On the other hand, you also need to learn that voicing your every opinion at every opportunity is often not worth it either. Let's say you had some bad experiences over the years with flamboyant homosexuals, and you live in San Francisco (and for some reason San Francisco is the only city where you can find work). You might feel like airing out your grievances, but is it really worth it? Do you hate them SO MUCH that it's worth losing your job over it.

So it really is ultimately a matter of drawing the line. Everyone will differ slightly on where to draw it, but keep in mind how valuable things are to you. Faking beliefs to keep a job may not be somewhat acceptable, because you do need a job to survive. But faking beliefs to maintain a friendship seems like a bad idea: you don't need to be hanging around with some faggot who's going to flip out because you don't like the same band he does.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - birdrussell - 12-16-2013 02:52 AM

I get a lot of this myself. once I get going it's hard to trow the off switch. you gotta pick your battles. my last few incidents have come during divisional meetings where the new policy on same sex marriage comes up or some other work place policy that is incredibly inconvenient comes up. I air my grievances or objections but i have to bite my tongue at a certain point. I'm not trying to get demoted because I'm not feeling the way the wind is blowing but every one knows that I am not entirely on board with the status quo. in my personal like I hang out with a bunch of communist from tie to time. they know I'm an american and that they will probably never sway me but we have our little verbal battles over some sherry and at the end of the night I\'m confident I'll be getting along with them the next time I see them so I let these guys have it. It's all god fun.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - ikkyu - 12-16-2013 02:58 AM

If people say you're being confrontational and a dick I think the issue is more your perceived attitude/approach than what you say. In general operating from a frame of mutual respect and constructive exchange, avoiding personal/direct/accusatory language, and always giving your opponent a face saving way to tap out go a huge way towards handling disagreement gracefully. If you can maintain that frame you can calmly enforce the boundaries you've set and make the other person look at fault for any conflict. Once that happens you can graciously hold out an olive branch to save them from their own social failure. Being able to do that makes you look alpha as fuck.

But yeah choose your battles wisely. Not pointlessly arguing with no benefit is far from being a pussy.

Contrarian can be a great rep if you play it smart.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Hades - 12-16-2013 03:53 AM

These guys are probably misjudging your intent - are you trying to educate or spur debate or are you just coming up with bizarre shit out of left field to antagonize them?
Given that not many people disagree with mainstream opinion (that's why it's mainstream opinion), they're forced to conclude with the latter.

I guess you just have to assure them otherwise, somehow.

Either beat them down with raw information (this can work to ally interested bystanders to your side at the least - most people admire those who can defend their opinions well, regardless if their opinions seem insane) or entertain the comedy of their worldview - why not?

Pretty much everybody has already mentioned the wisdom of picking your battles - make sure to jump in to a serious debate with enough ammunition to start another world war.

There were a lot of Christians who liked Christopher Hitchens even though he was a drunkard and an ass, the guy was such a magnificent bastard and walked into every debate and argument so well prepared (and well spoken) that he couldn't help but earn the admiration of people who should have hated what he had to say.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Flavius Aetius - 12-16-2013 04:00 AM

To be honest, I have gotten to the point where I say what I want and really don't care what people think of me (except at work where I could potentially lose my job).

That being said, it is impossible to talk sense to fools about politics (e.g. republicans and democrats). 48% of the population will vote for anyone with a D after his name and the other 48% will vote for anyone with an R after his name. Would not matter if Hitler or Stalin were running for office. The liberals would all vote for Stalin because "well he is better than that Fascist Hitler" and all the republicans would vote for Hitler "because he is better than that commie Stalin." These pathetic people are trapped in the artificial construct of the left/right paradigm.

About 4% of the population is independent and open to genuine debate. Those people are fun to talk to. The rest are zombie like drones who routinely disregard facts, logic, and reason to keep with their ideology. Don't engage them. It is a useless endeavor.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Sonsowey - 12-17-2013 01:11 AM

The other night I was with a friend and we "debated" about several issues for about an hour. It was enjoyable, intellectual sparring. We didn't fight, we didn't get upset, we enjoyed it.

I like those kinds of interaction, intellectual exercise, it's like getting out and sprinting after being cooped up in an office all day.

Yet almost everyone I try this with just isn't into it, and they take it as an argument or dickisness.

Example: At a dinner party with several people from different countries, several people learning languages, I mentioned that Russian, Spanish and English were all somewhat related, being Indo-European languages. A Russian girl took great offense. I tried to explain, but she was getting terribly upset at me. Since I don't speak Russian, she thought it unreasonable that I even state something like "English and Russian are in the same language family." I had to just drop the subject because she was getting increasingly irritated and beginning to yell, ruining the dinner party because she didn't even know what language families were, and sure as hell wasn't going to accept such a thing from me for whatever reason.

What in the world am I to do?


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Ensam - 12-17-2013 01:29 AM

(12-17-2013 01:11 AM)Sonsowey Wrote:  What in the world am I to do?

Bang her. If you can evoke a strong emotion in a girl you can usually sleep with her.


RE: Keeping your opinions to yourself in social situations - Felix88 - 12-17-2013 06:24 PM

I used to keep my opinions to myself in social situations but now I pretty much say what I want and don't give a flying fuck anymore, people can take it or leave it, what surprised me is all the positive reactions I got and things I got away with considering where I am.

But I always let the other person expense their ego first