When doing any business dealings, the more you value the relationship with the person you are dealing with, the more business-like should the dealing be.
That avoids misunderstandings and preserves the relationship.
(Most people do the opposite—a serious mistake that is costly to relationships).
You see, if the relationship is casual and not super valuable to you, it’s not a big deal to have an argument, or call in an arbitrator, or even involve a lawyer.
All that is lost is the items of the agreement.
But, if friends and family are involved, you can avoid the risk of seriously damaging or even severing that relationship by getting everything agreed to down in writing in detail.
Then, because what you agreed to at the onset is in writing, you not only avoid disageements but actually will enhace the relationship.
This applies to casual discussions, especially of meaningful issues.
Memories are fleeting—they vary, are transient, and short—even with the very best of intentions, misunderstandings result.
Adopt this policy universally:
After you discuss some meaningful issue, write out your understanding of what was said and agreed to.
Give a copy of your notes to the person(s) involved in the conversation with this introduction sentence:
“The following is my understanding of what we agreed to today.
I will assume that you agree with the understanding as I have described it and I will move forward with that understanding unless I hear back from you soon to the contrary. Thank you.”
Or write a note that says:
“Let me see if I understand what we agreed to correctly:
I hear you saying……...” or
It appears you are saying……….” or
It sounds like you are saying………..” or
Are you saying…………….?”
Keep those notes for future reference. Make sense?