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Conversations are best when they are open, honest and effective. Of course it’s tough to achieve, especially when the stakes are high, when opinions vary, and when emotions run strong. Learn how to overcome the fight or flight instinct in order to have an effective outcome to a tough conversation.

Show Notes

To have any real sense of intimacy, it’s necessary to have the occasional tough conversation. Usually conversations go one of three ways: we digress to threats and name-calling, we revert to silent fuming, or we are able to talk openly, honestly and effectively. To make it more challenging, however, our fight or flight instinct says “don’t have this tough conversation!” But did you know that studies show the same negative physical responses occur no matter if you feel under attack OR are making sure to avoid tough conversations. It’s best to enter the difficult conversation and seek to be calm, open, honest — with God’s help you can have an effective outcome!


Quote by Martin Luther King Jr: “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

Quote: “Speak when you are angry, and you will make the best speech you will ever regret.”


  • Proverbs 12:18, The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
  • James 3:8, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
  • Matthew 18:15, If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.
  • Philippians 2:4, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
  • James 1:19, Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.


  • Prayer – ask God to be present with you and enter into every tough conversation you face
  • Wait a 5 second pause before speaking
  • Pick one to focus on from the James verse: quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to become angry.