Constructive conversation: meaning, concept, rules and features

Communication with people occupies an important place in our lives. Without it, love and family relationships, friendships, work, and business would not be possible. As a rule, people who master the skill of constructive communication achieve great success in their personal and professional lives. But how can you learn to communicate constructively? What does the concept of “constructive conversation” even mean? You can find answers to these and other questions in our article.

What does constructive thinking look like?

Constructive thinking is, in a sense, a way of life. It can be seen in the example of human reactions to difficult situations. For example, two maids finished their shift at a hotel and found themselves stuck in an elevator late at night. Both suffered from mild claustrophobia. Both of them were in a hurry about their business. And for both the situation was physically unacceptable. One of them panics, hits the buttons, starts wailing, screaming, trying to attract attention. The other, meanwhile, tries to remain calm. She monitors her breathing. She tries to call the elevator operator using the button. When the button did not work, the woman took out her mobile phone, called a friend who lived nearby, and after 15 minutes they were released.

What is the difference between the types of thinking of these women? The first one's thoughts were chaotic and not constructive. She felt sorry for herself - after all, she was claustrophobic, and she was in a hurry. Giving in to her emotions, she did not allow her mind to work on the situation. But she also had a mobile phone in her purse. The second woman did not allow herself to panic. She took it upon herself to solve the problem and did not panic when the elevator button did not work. If she didn't have a phone, she would still find a way out.

In any situation, constructive thinking begins where emotions end. Feelings prevent a person from adequately perceiving the situation. This type of thinking is more characteristic of men than women. The reason for this is different hormonal sets. Estrogen, with which women are thoroughly saturated, sensitivity at a certain time of the cycle distances them from constructiveness. Women often give in to impulses and act under the influence of emotions. Such actions have no logical justification and, over time, become a matter of regret.

Men are also devoid of constructiveness, because there are very sensitive, vulnerable representatives of the stronger sex. Just like there are women who carry a “golden head” on their shoulders that can solve any problem.

Constructive and destructive

Often, when trying to form constructive cooperation, participants in the work process end up with exactly the opposite. This is due to a lack of skills and abilities, since currently most educators and teachers do not have a high-quality theoretical basis for the formation of a correct group and relationships within it. You can notice destructive interaction when it is noted that one participant is not ready to accept and recognize goals and methods that are important for the other. At the same time, positions are denied. This leads to the fact that instead of solving the problem and task, additional negative connections are only formed between group members, which in a predictable way does not give an effective outcome.

If the work process is built taking into account the principles of humanism, it is possible to prevent relationships from being skewed in a negative direction, as a result of which a system of interconnected prerequisites and consequences is formed that ensures constructive interaction. For this purpose, in the first place is the assessment of the individual as a significant, independent object worthy of respect and attention. It is necessary to recognize the right to the uniqueness of every individual included in society. Understanding that the interlocutor is unique, you can take this into account when working together. At the same time, constructive interaction involves focusing on the ideas of tolerance, therefore, all participants in the relationship must be tolerant of others. Prejudice that may affect the correct assessment of events, opinions, and people is unacceptable. This directly affects the nature of relationships in the group.

Where to get constructive thoughts

First, let's figure out what this type of thinking gives a person.

  1. The ability to balance the emotional pendulum and not succumb to negativity. The person will feel calm and protected. Behind constructive thinking is like behind a stone wall.
  2. This helps to find a way out of the most difficult situations.
  3. This kind of thinking often changes a person's life. He acquires a similar skill, realizes that there is something in his life that does not suit him, and begins to work in this direction. Logic will no longer allow you to avoid changes or find reasons for inaction. This is how positive change begins: with a thought. With the right thought.

Anyone, even the most emotional and inert person, can learn to think constructively. Try to remember a person around you who has this ability. Imagine a difficult situation and think about what he would do. Try to put yourself in his place and adopt the way of thinking. Emotions away, just cold reason.

You can practice both in fictitious situations and in real ones. A little work on your thinking, and the skill will become a habit.

Constructive thinking is characterized by:

  • Impartiality.
  • Logics.
  • Subsequence.
  • Thoughtfulness.
  • Comprehensive assessment of the situation.
  • Building a plan.
  • Assessing prospects.
  • Forecasting developments.
  • Lack of emotions.

The main component of such thinking is a cool mind. Emotions do not allow a person to consider a situation from all sides, see perspectives and evaluate all possible options, choosing the best.

Social dialogue is also an art

Communication is not just a skill given to everyone by nature. Psychologists point out that this is an art that you have to learn throughout your life. Due to character and personality traits, it is easier for some, but for others it is much more difficult to get along with it. By applying the rules on which constructive interaction in society is based, knowing the psychological context, subtext, and tools for influencing the interaction between participants in society, one can achieve success. Often, the comprehensive development of an individual presupposes conditions for constructive interaction, but in the absence of such, a person who understands the essence of relationships can make efforts to create a suitable environment.

Personality and psyche, especially in childhood, are largely shaped by relationships with the closest people. In the future, this will regulate relations with other participants in society. Psychologists pay attention: children are characterized by very strong emotions, which weaken with age, become muted, and behavioral aspects manifest themselves more clearly. Methods of constructive interaction involve adjusting the emotional development of the child in such a way that the development of personality is as complete as possible. During childhood, it is important to lay down the concept of “I”, to which the whole future life will be subordinated. Ways of constructive interaction come to the rescue.

How to think constructively

You can master the technique of a constructive way of thinking using the technique of renouncing emotions. Its essence is to completely rid yourself of emotions for a while. Just after hearing unpleasant news, most people immediately form a chain of negative thoughts in their heads, which plunge them into the abyss of dark feelings. No productivity.

The first step after receiving any information should be its comprehensive processing. Of course, if the information concerns you and can somehow affect the existing situation. There is no need to use logic and comprehend an anecdote, funny story or gossip about a colleague.

Example: a man is informed that his beloved wife had dinner in a cafe with an unknown man.

Destructive thinking.

“She’s definitely cheating on me. I'm a cuckold now and my friends already know. I'm disgraced. I will never forgive her. She won't admit it and will find an excuse. I loved her so much! I will also find a mistress - it will be fair. I don’t want to see her. I’m going on a spree.”

Such behavior and reaction would definitely lead to a scandal. And repeated situations of this type will lead to divorce. And all because of the inability to think constructively. Unnecessary emotions, far-fetched situations. And the wife just went to show her new colleague the cafe next to the office. They were just talking about work. He could be a deeply married man or even a man with unconventional views on women.

Constructive thinking.

“My wife will definitely give me a reasonable explanation for this case. It is unlikely that she will publicly share lunch with her lover in a cafe. The situation is unpleasant for me because I love my wife and am a little jealous of her. But she never gave me any reason to doubt. We will talk and find out everything, until this moment the situation will look to me like Schrödinger's cat. And now I don’t have a single reason to worry. It could be her distant relative or colleague. She will return home and we will calmly discuss everything. There’s no point in going over possible options in your head.”

Don't panic: assess the situation. Yes, the news is unpleasant for him. But the man pulled himself together; he would not burn his nerve cells in vain. He will not cause a scandal by screwing himself up. He accepted the fact that there was not enough information to draw any conclusions. Constructive thinking in action.

What else is there?

In addition to constructive, it is customary to talk about destructive, destructive, restrictive social interaction. Each of the listed types has a number of specific features.

Destructive is a method of interaction that involves some destruction. When resorting to it, you need to be prepared to destabilize the relationships between participants in communication. The system in which interacting people are embedded may collapse. If it is assumed that one participant in the dialogue is teaching something to another (teacher, parent), the use of destructive techniques can lead to distortion of information and complete ineffectiveness of the process of personal improvement.

Restrictive interaction between participants in society is a limiting type of relationship in which one of the parties to the dialogue controls the other, without paying attention to the whole picture. The development of the situation may follow a positive scenario, but there are no guarantees. Restructive interaction involves support. If a certain interaction between participants in society has made it possible to achieve a certain success, the use of such relationship mechanisms makes it possible to maintain success.

Thinking like a strategist

Have you ever wondered how the mindset of a millionaire or a successful entrepreneur differs from the mindset of an ordinary person? Why do some people succeed in everything in life, while others cannot achieve a promotion even with an excellent education and work experience? Everything always starts with a thought. And the ability to think is decisive in any field.

How do these short, homely men think, next to whom the beauty queen walks? How do ugly women manage to get real Apollos as husbands? How does a boy from an orphanage become a millionaire? What is the secret of success? When there are no prerequisites, when no one helps, how do they manage to achieve their goals? Let us examine in detail the thinking of a strategist.

  1. See the goal, consider it comprehensively.
  2. Realize the degree of importance for yourself.
  3. Assess your real capabilities, taking into account the complete lack of luck and help from other people. For strategists know that in this life they can only rely on their own strength.
  4. Calculate options for the development of events.
  5. An important rule of successful people: you should always have a backup plan. Plan b". If it doesn’t work out right away, they will use this fallback option. It is also worth developing a plan “B” - and so on at least until the middle of the alphabet. Often people achieve their goals not on the first try and not on the second. Sometimes it takes the thousandth option to get all the way to the end.
  6. Next comes a promise to yourself that you will not give up. Now that the options have been calculated, you don’t have to be upset about failures. The strategist foresaw this and prepared a plan B. There is no disappointment component. Emotions can lead you astray. They are good in certain situations, but not here.
  7. A strategist knows how to make emotions serve him. There are only two options: eliminate them completely, using reason rather than feelings, or use them. You can hang a photo of your least favorite fat relative on the refrigerator - and this will force you to stick to your diet. Every day you can remember your difficult childhood in poverty and go to work, climb the career ladder. Man considers himself a rational being. But when his emotions control him, he looks no better than a kitten chasing its tail in rage. Destroy or subjugate: this is what successful people do with their feelings.
  8. Next, the strategist’s thinking comes into play and the details are thought out.
  9. The implementation stage begins. The strategist at this stage continues to be guided by his own plan. Analyzes it. Makes adjustments if necessary.

Teaching children

When raising a child, do not forget to teach him the correct ability to listen and respect the interlocutor. This training involves controlling your own speech. Children repeat everything after the people around them. Try to ensure that your communication with your child is the same as with an adult. When communicating with their parents, children must learn to live, being able to argue and defend their point of view. Let them take the initiative. Do not interrupt, despite the absurdity of the statement. Listen to him to the end, carefully and thoroughly explain the wrong to the child. Teach him to defend his point of view.

How to understand that you have a chaotic type of thinking

Having read the article to this point, everyone was already thinking: “What’s wrong with me? Do I have constructive thinking? It is so simple. Or not?". To answer this question, analyze how you usually speak and solve problems.

A simple test will help you understand your way of thinking:

  1. During a conversation, are you distracted by insignificant details and trifles?
  2. How long does it take you to explain your thoughts?
  3. Do you start the story with the Mesozoic era? (This means whether you start it from the very essence or, as in the fairy tale: “We lived, we didn’t grieve”).
  4. Are you distracted by extraneous thoughts, changing the topic of conversation?
  5. Do you ever analyze other people's thoughts about your idea? (People who are closed to other people's opinions are limited. It is not necessary to accept someone else's point of view, but if you are offered an alternative option that may turn out to be productive advice, an intelligent person will definitely listen).
  6. Don't plan your day in advance?

If you answered yes to at least one of the questions, you should work on yourself. This means that your type of thinking is close to chaotic. More than three positive answers mean that your thinking is chaotic.

Basic principles of interaction

When building constructive working relationships, participants must consider the idea of ​​congruence. Interactivity in this approach requires the activity of all participants, an interested position and coordination of actions to achieve the common goal set for them. Participants must coordinate their capabilities and means in order to achieve maximum mutual understanding.

Another important principle that builds meaningful relationships is honesty, which some also call open play. This approach makes it possible to regulate the significance of relationships between group members. The idea was first explored in the works of Coubertin, who mentioned that the desire for victory should not be an excuse for any actions, noble behavior is important, and the spirit of struggle prevails over the importance of victory itself.

Development of thinking

Practical exercises will help you develop the right way of thinking. What is needed for this? Just start. With the understanding that it won’t work out the first time or even the hundredth time. You will practice for a long time before you notice that emotions no longer rule your life.

Start with simple everyday situations. I don't feel like washing dishes. Analyze the situation, engage constructive thinking. Perhaps you will realize that it is more advisable to wash the dishes immediately after eating, without leaving them for later under the pretext of soaking and busyness. Moreover, washing dishes is a time of relaxation. When you wash a plate, think only about the plate. Learn to turn off your thoughts. Afterwards, praise yourself for washing right away.

Any unpleasant situation can and should be used for good. And constructive thinking will help with this.


“The ability to communicate with people is a commodity bought with money, like sugar and coffee. And I am ready to pay more for this skill than for any other product in this world,” said John Rockefeller.

Proper communication is the ability to say the right words at the right time.

And the higher a person’s position in business, the more expensive his time spent on each specific word.

The manager must:

  • direct the actions of subordinates to achieve intended goals;
  • express your thoughts and ideas correctly;
  • justify your vision in various circumstances.

To achieve your goals, you need to express your thoughts constructively. They should evoke the emotions and beliefs you need. A person holding a leadership position must be able to influence subordinates with words. This is necessary for a successful business.

Grouping topics

For convenience, you can mentally compile a library of topics. If you are talking about work, then the topic should not switch to personal issues. If you analyze the situation, do not think about the upcoming renovation or movie. Clear your internal dialogue of debris. Only pure constructivism of thinking. When you are no longer working, but just walking in the park, you can allow yourself to think about something detached. But even then, do not forget about control. There should be no porridge in your head - pure thoughts on a certain topic. When it is exhausted, move on to another. Thinking needs control.

Listening Techniques

The features of constructive communication are so numerous that mastering them requires some time and further regular practice. Interestingly, you will have to learn not only to convey, but also to perceive information. In this regard, the following listening techniques are distinguished:

  • Active (reflective) listening involves constantly reflecting information. To show your interlocutor how attentive you are to his words, you need to constantly ask some clarifying questions. This will demonstrate your respect for your opponent and will also allow you to maintain attention without losing the thread of the conversation.
  • Passive (non-reflective) listening involves full concentration on the information. At the same time, you do not interrupt your interlocutor or interfere in his monologue. To show your opponent that you are paying attention, periodically nod your head to show that you are listening and understanding.
  • Empathic listening involves empathizing with the other person. You must not only understand his emotional state, but also share it and demonstrate it in every possible way.

How constructive thinking affects health

There are several changes that will happen to you if you learn constructive thinking. Everyone who took such training or mastered the art on their own spoke about them.

  1. The person becomes calmer. His thoughts come into order. He begins to plan his day.
  2. People around notice changes in the gait, posture and gestures of such people. But this does not happen immediately. Psychologists notice such things in their patients who have persistently trained their way of thinking for several weeks.
  3. Panic attacks and neuroses recede, and VSD partially goes away. A person no longer gives in to panic, does not look for diseases that he heard about yesterday from the news.
  4. Many women and men finally manage to go on a diet and lose excess weight. People begin to control themselves better.
  5. Some somatic diseases and symptoms of asthenia disappear.
  6. Sleep improves and a person feels more alert. Especially if you paid attention to your health: included sports and proper nutrition in your daily to-do list.
  7. People who were terrified of doctors get rid of their fears and undergo preventive examinations on time.


Constructive communication helps develop a conscious understanding of the need for action to achieve results. To do this, you need to formulate your vision of the situation. A person must come to the conclusion that he needs to do it the way you want him to. The first stage of persuasion is repression. It consists of refuting your opponent’s arguments, proving the inconsistency of his beliefs. After a refutation, it is necessary to introduce your arguments into his consciousness. This is called substitution.

Persuasion scheme:

  • proving the inconsistency of the interlocutor’s ideas by demonstrating negative qualities;
  • demonstrating the positive features of your idea.

Otherwise, the interlocutor may agree with your arguments, but act according to his own vision.

How to learn to convert positive into constructive

Constructive thinking almost completely eliminates negativism. A person cannot give in to sad thoughts and feel sorry for himself, because this is of no use, like milk from a goat. Wanting to invigorate and motivate itself, the mind will rather find positive moments in any situation. And positivity turns into constructivism. In fairness, it is worth noting that the engine can be not only a carrot, but also a stick. But it is wiser to use positive reinforcement more often - you are not your own enemy.

Example. You are tired and want to put off some work until tomorrow. But this will affect your earnings. Positive reinforcement: You figure out what to buy for yourself with the extra money. This idea brings joy. You don't want to lose her. Here's an incentive to work on the weekend! Next is a simple action plan to get everything done: organizational issues. So the positive turned into constructive.

Collaboration idea

When it comes to the educational process, the need for constructive interaction arises not only between teacher and student, but also within the teaching team. In this case, the idea is to coordinate the goals pursued by different specialists, as well as methods and means. It is necessary to understand that a truly constructive approach involves taking into account tasks that are significant for each individual participating in the process. This helps not only to develop each participant in the process, but also to improve the group as a social unit, an organism that works systematically.

Constructive interaction, when examined in detail, looks like a rather contradictory task. This is due to the fact that it is extremely difficult to coordinate the goals of different social elements, members of the same group. In addition, it is rarely possible to observe that truly optimal methods and means are used within a group, and that the parties coming into contact occupy truly productive positions. All this directly affects the result. The productivity of the work process falls; the group and the individuals who form it cannot develop to their full available potential.


Let's look at techniques that will help you learn constructive thinking.

  • Complete control over emotions.

Let it upset you that your boss yelled at you in the morning. Away with self-pity and theatrical digressions. You simply solve important problems, go to his office and resolve the situation to the end.

  • “No” to fear.

If you feel a symptom of any disease, turn off the panic. What symptoms should the patient have? Do you have them or is it all the result of wild imagination? If symptoms persist for a while and there is no explanation, just get checked. Don't panic and write a will. Feelings are almost always unnecessary. Because they are not constructive.

  • Plan your time from start to finish.

You should always know what you will be doing tomorrow and in a month. If plans change, adapt, keep the basics. It should be prepared in advance. It goes like this: a lot can change, but even if the world ends, you'll still do 50 sit-ups and clean the house. This is the basis of constructive thinking.

Communication: an important aspect for any personality

It is necessary to understand that constructive interaction is a category clearly related to the characteristics of social interaction between people. At the same time, it is taken into account that communication has many plans, develops, and is established by various mechanisms. It is assumed that participants in society exchange data and formulate a strategy of action, and understand each other. This approach creates the basis for constructive interaction. This is important from the point of view of the result, since only by developing a joint correct strategy can any complex problem that requires coordination of efforts be solved.

From the point of view of the educational process, constructive interaction is a set of measures that includes the preparatory stage, direct mentoring, as well as certain manipulative techniques of instilling information and persuasion. Within the framework of such interaction, the student is required to repeat, imitate, and be willing to cooperate. At the same time, constructive interaction is a phenomenon that may include resistance as an additional, side element or as one of the basic tools for personality formation.

Dispute rules

The ancient Greeks, famous masters of polemics, called the art of argument eristics. And it was not for nothing that they called argument art. Constructive communication is a process that should bring moral satisfaction to both parties, serving to achieve the main goal of the conversation - learning the truth and correcting the picture of the world. It is important to follow a few simple rules.

The first thing you should pay attention to before starting a conversation is the mood and well-being of your opponent.

No matter how interesting the topic that needs to be discussed is, normal communication will not work if one of the parties to the conversation:

  • irritated;
  • exposed to severe stress;
  • in a hurry or very busy;
  • feels unwell, etc.

Psychologists do not recommend overusing sharp denial in conversation. Instead of a simple but categorical “no,” it is better to say “I agree, but...” or “Excellent, however...”. The use of such forms smoothes out overall tension and helps the conversation become more productive.

This technique benefits both participants in the conversation. The one who uses the above forms seems to be telling the other that he accepts his opinion, but wants to express his own, somewhat different point of view.

Another important rule of constructive communication: no dryness! Dialogue is a conversation between two or more persons, and not a monologue of one of the participants in the conversation, occasionally interrupted by monosyllabic phrases of another or others.

Concerned with the search for truth, correction and addition of the picture of the world, opponents should take an equally active part in the conversation. This rule works even for silent people, whom nature has deprived of oratorical talent.

A discussion aimed at knowing the truth cannot be conducted in an official tone. It is unpleasant. Dry officialdom does not allow interlocutors to feel free and express their opinions without embarrassment.

Each participant in the conversation needs to show affection for the interlocutor and respect for his values ​​in order to establish a trusting atmosphere of equality and creativity.

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