How To Effectively Change Someone’s Mind

During our lives we encounter many situations where we feel the need to change someone’s mind about something.

When someone is resistant to changing their mind about something, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are stubborn or annoying but rather can simply mean that somewhere in their belief system there is something that is preventing them from believing you.

In order to be able to change someone’s mind about anything you need to understand how they thinks, what they believe in and how you can insert your ideas into their belief system with minimal resistance.

Changing someone’s mind, a step by step guide

Here is a step by step guide to changing someone’s mind about something:

  • Throw the bomb: Start by saying your argument directly, clearly and briefly. For example “What you did yesterday was wrong”
  • Draw a map of the defense lines: As soon as you oppose someone’s beliefs they will start to argue by giving you many reasons for their actions. At this point you must remain silent and record what they say into your mind. As with many things, LISTENING is crucial to success. I call these arguments defense lines because as soon as you penetrate them you will easily change the person’s mind.
  • Debunk their arguments one by one and in the same order: The mistake lots of people make while trying to convince others is that they focus on the main point without understanding that if they managed to get rid of many arguments the other person gave the way to convince him will be opened. Don’t try and bring the castle down all in one, chip away, soldier by soldier until you start to make a big dent.
  • New arguments might appear and that’s normal: If you successfully managed to refute all of the arguments presented they might dig deeply into and find a last one or two arguments. At this point you shouldn’t lose hope but instead know that what you are doing is working! They are running out of arguments and they are down to the strategic reserves.
  • Reply back to the final arguments: Again you should reply to his final arguments by giving valid reasons that proves them wrong
  • Repeat your beliefs and its over!!: As soon as they tell  you “I don’t know” or “I am not sure” repeat your main idea again many times and he will believe in it. For example “You know it is wrong, why did you do that?”

Things that can help you to change a person’s mind

Of course the process is not that simple and you won’t be able to convince someone that his arguments are wrong unless you sound really convincing, this won’t happen unless:

  • Be Real: Nobody is going to believe something willy-nilly. Your perspective must be grounded in reality. No matter how many times you repeat something, if it doesn’t come from a place of truth, nobody’s going to buy it.
  • Do Your Homework/Offer solid proof: Like many things, preparation is key. After all the other person needs stronger evidence than the ones he has in order to believe you
  • Back your arguments by facts: Use statistics, numbers, research findings or even quotes from authoritative figures to sound more convincing.
  • Use social proof: Let the person feel that he is odd but giving him examples of many other people who have opposite beliefs. The social proof theory states that at the time of confusion people tend to stick to what the majority is doing
  • Repetition: the more you repeat your argument the more convincing it will become. If you managed to let another friend repeat the same argument then your probability of changing the person’s mind will become much higher.

Finally changing someone’s mind is all about removing the obstacles he is holding in his belief system one by one then repeating your idea over and over.

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56 Responses to How To Effectively Change Someone’s Mind

  1. Craig Thomas says:

    Nice post, I love the step-by-step-ness of it. Even though the steps can be used to manipulate people, pretty easily – its hoped only ‘good’ people will use it. Although, marketers do this type of approach daily.

  2. GD says:

    Nice Post….But I doubt about the first point ‘Drop The Bomb’.
    I think people get defensive when attacked on their belief and they wud do anything to defend their belief.
    Dont you think so….
    I’m eager to know

  3. Quint says:

    OK, either your website got pwned, this is a late April Fool’s joke or you are baiting a serious troll hook :)

    Thanks for the laugh.

  4. Daniel says:

    As Quint mentioned: You are six days to late with this. 😀

  5. I agree with Craig- this post could easily be used to manipulate people which is not a good thing! I do think there are some great tips here though. The most important part is doing your homework – particularly in a work environment where you really need to have all the facts and present yourself as knowledgeable. It’s hard to argue with a rational mind.

  6. Pk says:

    Some great tips like doing your homework… But I feel it is very difficult to change someone’s mind by throwing a bomb! People have egos and they want to protect them. I feel one of the best ways is to use some patience and make them understand slowly without affecting their ego.

  7. Mark Dykeman says:

    This is a very logical set of steps, but I would hope that most people use this as a last resort only.

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  9. lisa says:

    Good tips, Also, some people are more open to change then others. Changing the changeable type of people would certainly help too.

  10. Pol says:

    I am sure this can be very effective. I just wonder about the repeating your point. People who argue and I disagree with annoy me so much when they go on to repeat their point, several times. Sometimes we need to agree to disagree. Sometimes the strategy of coming at me with a well reasoned argument then making the same point many times feels like an attempt to railroad me into something. I then feel obliged to continue to disagree with them whatever my feelings on the subject are just to let them know that they cannot tell me what to think!

  11. Nicholas Haasch says:

    This is also an affective approach to getting someone to verbally agree with you without actually changing their mind.

    I’d be mindful of the nonverbal cues with this approach. My guess is that you’ll see the body giving a different story.

    This post would had been hilarious on April 1st.

  12. Nicholas Haasch says:


    typo gremlin! i sweat! :>

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  14. Farouk says:

    thanks Craig :)
    yes like everything else, if the wrong person got it problems might happen

  15. Farouk says:

    Dear Gd
    what you said is actually written in the article
    the main aim of throwing the bomb is letting the defenses come to the surface

    step 2 is called, draw a map of the defense lines:)
    you won’t be able to know them before someone becomes defensive so actually we are trying to make the person defensive on intention
    thanks for the comment :)

  16. Farouk says:

    yes lauren
    you are both right,
    i hope only good people find it

  17. Farouk says:

    that’s a nice point Pol :)
    of course people would disagree if you repeated something while they had opposing beliefs

    but if you removed the opposing beliefs first, as described in the article, then repetition will only convince them more :)

  18. Farouk says:

    i agree with you Mark
    thanks for the comment :)

  19. Farouk says:

    hey Pk
    thanks for the comment
    the purpose for throwing the bomb wasn’t for convincing them
    its just to bring the resistance to the surface so that you can use logic to convince them

  20. Farouk says:

    i agree lisa
    thanks for the comment :)

  21. Farouk says:

    hahaha, it would have been used the wrong way if it was published at that time :)))

  22. Farouk says:

    sorry didn’t quite get all of these expressions

  23. Ramesh Raghuvanshi says:

    IF we cannot change ourselves how can we change to another?If you want to change another you to manipulate him either show him hope or show him fear. Be remember you cannot change or conquer another person forever.

  24. The most important step in this area is to let them think that it was their idea. You talk with them saying things like “I wonder what life would be like if we chose this option” and lead it into “Wow, t hat’s a great idea” when you in fact had the idea initially.

  25. Someone’s Mind is very varied, and I find it very difficult for all of that. Patience and bombs that might be learned

  26. prom gowns says:

    I really enjoyed reading this article.Thanks.

  27. seks shop says:

    change another you to manipulate him either show him hope or show him fear. Be remember you cannot change or conquer another person

  28. lex girl says:

    Thanks for the article. Also, a person should be willing to listen though. If someone doesn’t even want to talk that might be harder to accomplish.

  29. D. Madhan Kumar says:

    Its really very nice….ya its true…..

  30. What about trying to change the beliefs of someone not receptive to your challenge? When you “throw the bomb” as stated in the first step you stand the chance of losing a friend or getting a punch in the nose.

  31. vaish says:

    Its effective!But how can we say that they wont change their mind this temporary solution for all problems?

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  34. Litesp33d says:

    How do you counter arguments that go like this.
    “I am a scientist.  I accept every new idea that science comes up with where there is sufficient new evidence.  However when that idea contradicts the Bible I choose what the Bible says to be true.”

  35. Danielle says:

    “What you did yesterday was wrong”…
    This immediately forces the other person into a defensive position wether you are in the right or not. “What you did yesterday made me feel horrible because…” makes it clear that you are just telling your experience. Plus revealing your emotions makes the other person more likely to open up.

  36. Danielle says:

    “What you did yesterday was wrong”…
    This immediately forces the other person into a defensive position wether you are in the right or not. “What you did yesterday made me feel horrible because…” makes it clear that you are just telling your experience. Plus revealing your emotions makes the other person more likely to open up.

  37. Per Franck says:

    This guide is wrong! … Anyway, you can’t “drop bombs” like that. Chances are they are gonna lock themselves in the bunker rather than wanna talk to you. Heck! they might even pretend to listen, and nod in agreement, then when you turn your back, they will plot your demise or at least smacktalk you at the water cooler.

  38. Sdwd says:

    exactly what Per Franck will do.

  39. ThornOfMichaelBay says:

     I hate those guys!

  40. vickie6 says:

    nice but not much effective.,.,please give me the valuable one with example.,

  41. Kanra5020 says:

    Dammit this won’t help me convince my teacher to grade. my late work

  42. Kanra5020 says:

    Dammit this won’t help me convince my teacher to grade. my late work

  43. Lisa says:

    What Jay Smooth has to say about interacting with an individual who says something racist seems pertinent here

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  45. muggiemaggie says:

    The truth will win in the end…don’t try to brainwash. Be as genuine as time will allow and time will reward you and your friend.

  46. Reemtohme says:

    This sucks I tried it and it didn’t work!:(

  47. Velismelisa66 says:

    I need to change my brother mind he wants to got to Army and I don’t want him to I need HELP!

  48. amanda says:

    good idea but it’s not working. We cant change peoples mind because we don’t know what they think. If we change a mind at the end they will know the truth. But however i like this. 

  49. 9dodo says:

    I’m trying to change a person’s mind in which he would allow me to do something.Like
    I have to get a good grade in my exams so I can go on a trip or something.But I wanna
    do it without getting good grades(I do actually),got any ideas?

  50. b says:

    I doubt this strategy will work successfully everyone. Directly challenging a person’s beliefs will likely incite an angry response. Once a person is angry all those facts, proof, and repetition will likely not even be heard. Granted, listening to the person might allow them to calm down. But starting with a less confrontational opening might be more effective.

  51. Chris says:

    Will this help me convince ny gf to move back to my city?

  52. yesica says:

    He spent 60-years learning, studying and testing hypnosis
    techniques. Many of them he pioneered. His skills became so proficient he could
    hypnotize subjects while talking with them. They had no idea what was
    happening. Yet they followed Dr. Erickson’s commands on cue.

    The main focus of his work was on applying hypnosis in
    medical or therapeutic environments. He also used his knowledge in daily
    situations to gain a considerable advantage over others.

    For example, up until 1953 doctors were banned from using
    hypnosis while treating patients.

    The American Medical Association (AMA) prohibited members
    from the practice. Dr. Erickson believed hypnosis was a viable and effective
    therapeutic tool. To keep his medical license, he became an expert at
    hypnotizing patients during “normal” conversation. He broke the rules
    and taught himself.

    read on here:

  53. vanda says:

    Just will not work if the person has a strong personality. I dealt many years with highly emotional vampires very manipulative people. Just built a wall and didnt let let drain me or make me feel guilty. And one day I just left them.

  54. ... says:

    If you want to convince someone they are wrong blunt arguments are not the best way to convince them. Subtle clues and playing with their subconscious mind is the better way to go because they won’t realize that your trying to convince them of something. Here’s an example, your in a car with someone and they start speeding and driving 15 miles over the speed limit, you were not comfortable with how they were driving. Don’t tell them outright that they shouldn’t drive 15 miles over the speed limit, instead wait a day or two and tell them “did you know that people are 5 times more likely to get into a wreck if they drive 15 miles over the speed limit” (btw I don’t know if thats true I’m just giving an example). The person will most likely not question your argument because they don’t know that your trying to convince them to drive slower they just think your fact-sharing. Their subconscious will register that fact and store it to warn the conscious brain in the future when that person is driving 15 miles over the speed limit how much more danger they are putting themselves in.

    If you go the blunt path and tell them that you don’t like how they are driving because it makes them 5 times more likely to get into a wreck, most likely they will resist. They will question your sources and come up with reasons why they don’t believe you, they start actively resisting you so to speak. Its much easier to convince someone to drive slower if you plant a seed in their mind and allow that seed to fight your battle for you rather than having their viewpoint actively resist yours. Arguing with them on something like this might even make them stubbornly plant their feet in the sand and make it harder to convince them later or worse they will resent you for questioning their driving skills.

    In short: Argue your point but make sure that the person your arguing with doesn’t know what your real viewpoint is. They can’t resist if they don’t know what to resist.

  55. Jesus Gonzalez says:

    It is a way to change their minds, but not change their perspective. If you want to changes someone’s mind, be less aggressive. Listen to what they have to say, then build to your viewpoints and compare it to his/hers. Build a consensus (general agreement) from there, this way you will become less ignorant than you were before.

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