Self-sabotage is the fastest way to doom any attempt at having a fair conversation on a hard topic. A PDF from Ridge Training breaks down conversation preparation into three tasks—managing self-talk, speaking objectively about behavior and consequences, and listening more than you speak. Self-talk is when you convince yourself, often wrongly, that you already know what the fallout of the conversation will be, poisoning your rationality. Be honest with yourself about how a situation really is, and never presume to know exactly how the other person feels. The drive to get to the truth of a matter is the only way to have a successful difficult conversation.