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Tongue Fu!: How to Deflect, Disarm, and Defuse Any Verbal Conflict [Paperback]

Sam Horn
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 15 1997
If you've ever been tongue-tied - or if you've ever given a tongue-lashing (and regretted it), Tongue Fu! offers constructive alternatives that will turn hostility into harmony and help you avoid a mental breakdown in the face of aggression. With straightforward strategies and proven techniques, Tongue Fu! examines almost every kind of verbal conflict - from fights with your spouse or a stalemate with the kids - and shows how to use martial arts for the mind and mouth to deflect attacks, disarm disputes, and defuse any explosive situation. With Tongue Fu! you will learn words to use (and words to lose) in tense situations, the power of the phrase "You're right," the tools to use when people push your "hot buttons," how to handle a verbal bully who enjoys attacking and tormenting, how to gracefully exit an argument, what to say when you don't know what to say, how to use silence to your advantage, how to be pleasantly unpleasant, and how to take charge of your emotions.

Frequently Bought Together

Tongue Fu!: How to Deflect, Disarm, and Defuse Any Verbal Conflict + Take the Bully by the Horns: Stop Unethical, Uncooperative, or Unpleasant People from Running and Ruining Your Life + The Bully at Work, 2E: What You Can Do to Stop the Hurt and Reclaim Your Dignity on the Job
Price For All Three: CDN$ 44.04

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Product Description

From Library Journal

The purpose of Kung Fu, the Chinese art of self-defense, is to fend off physical attacks. According to professional speaker and consultant Horn, the purpose of Tongue Fu, a spoken form of self-defense, is to guard against psychological attacks. Dealing with difficult people is a part of everyday life. However, by focusing on real-life responses to verbal challenges instead of theories and platitudes, the author has delivered a convenient handbook for the mental martial art of verbal self-protection. Divided into four sections, the book offers techniques and skills for responding thoughtfully in conflicts, expressing honest feelings and goals, seeking cooperation in difficult situations, and living a life of value during trying times. Each of the 30 chapters offers examples that demonstrate the expected goals and acquired skills in action. Despite its suggestively prurient title, Horn's book is a lively, positive guide that can be returned to time and again. A popular title for all public library collections.
David R. Johnson, Fayetteville P.L., Ark.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


"This is a great book! Tongue Fu! puts a new twist on communiction. Everyone should read it.!"--John Gray, author of Men Are from Mars, Women are from Venus

"Tongue Fu! is a practical and easy-to-read book on the important topic of interpersonal relationships. Many stories beautifully illustrate the immediate, usable ideas on how to get along better with just about anyone, anytime, anywhere. The world would be a more peaceful and harmonious place if people practiced the enduring principles presented in this book. Tongue Fu! is destined to be a classic."--Jack Canfield, coauthor of Chicken Soup for the Soul

"Tongue Fu! is filled with delightful tools for keeping both feet on the ground instead of in the mouth. Both young and old need to learn its lessons for creating connection instead of alienation."--Susan Jeffers, Ph.D., author of Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway and End the Struggle and Dance with Life

"This book is a gold mine for anyone who deals with the public. The great strength lies in two things. First are Horn's unimpeachable ideas. She's added to the legacy of ideas on dealing with people left by Abraham Lincoln, Benjamin Franklin, Dale Carngie, and many others. That takes skill. Second are the examples she uses. This a comprehensive manual for getting ahead--while inviting others to join you."--Executive Book Summaries

"In this delightful book, I found many gems of practical wisdom for everyday life. Among books on effective communication and improved relationships, this is one of the finest ever seen. An important work--fun to read, learn from, and apply."--Dan Millman, author of Way of the Peaceful Warrior and The Laws of Spirit

"Frustrated? Try some verbal kung fu. These verbal techniques for 'fast-forwarding through frustration' help keep inner harmony."--the Chicago Tribune

"This is a terrific book, full of verbal 're-engineering' designed to refocus us toward greater fulfillment in our dialogues with others through better communication."--Anthony Robbins, author of Awaken the Giant Within and Unlimited Power

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
What do you do when someone says something unfair or unkind? Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars everclear1 Sept. 11 2003
"I wish I'd been introduced to these ideas years ago; they would have saved me so much unnecessary grief. As the author points out, this isn't just about dealing with difficult people. It's about communicating in a way that helps us get along better with just about anyone. I didn't even know there were such things as "Words to Lose," and now I realize I use them constantly with customers and co-workers, even my kids. No wonder people sometimes give me a hard time. I was using language that actually makes matters worse. The book tells you exactly what to say in different types of situations. Best of all, it made me think twice about the way I relate to people. Instead of seeing the other person as the one who is being ornery, I realize now that I could be contributing to it. This book is a real eye-opener and I'm glad I read it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Disarming verbally aggressive people Nov. 18 2001
Tongue Fu is an excellent treatise on how to handle verbal situations in life. Complainers, bullies, manipulators, it doesn't matter, all types of situations that are time-bombs and need to be diffused are covered in the book. The book is a working manual on how to recognize, disarm and remove those bombs before they explode and damage your reputation, your business, your relationship or just plain ruin your day. It covers the full gamut of information from how to recognize that you are under attack, to how to recognize the particular attack and what techniques are appropriate to disarm the attack. For some bombs cutting the blue wire disarms and for another one it sets the bomb off. Knowing the right type of situation you are dealing with lets you know what type of action disarms and what type sets the attack into high gear.
Lots of case histories and lots of examples so you will know what you are doing., action plans to help you start putting the information into action, the book has it all.
Another book that augments this title would be "The Gentle Art of Verbal Self-Defense", a slightly more dated book but one that deals with many of the items in greater detail. Together they are a complete set of how to deal with verbally aggressive people.
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By A Customer
Sam Horn covers a broad spectrum of verbal situations that can easily turn harmful if not handled well. Her recommendations are creative and practical and lets us take back control of our language. Horn's examples are so real one can hear the conversations! Each chapter ends with an action plan to help us deal with the particular difficulty covered.
The final chapter ties a nice bow around all the techniques by encouraging the reader to develop an action plan to turn "intentions into actions."
An easy read rich with appropriate quotations.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Sam Horn Can Help! Feb. 26 2003
I recommend this book to everyone I know who ever has to deal with difficult people. (And don't we all, at some point?) Sam Horn shows us how to deflect verbal "attacks" and deal with challenging interpersonal situations in a diplomatic way, that leaves us feeling in control of our reactions and able to move on. Her book is as enjoyable as it is helpful, filled with practical advice to use now so we can learn to resolve conflicts positively and with our self-respect and dignity intact.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Sophmoric Infomercial Aug. 31 2003
By GMan
I purchased this book based upon many of the reader recommendations on this very important subject. However, after I received the book and began reading it, I felt scammed.
Recently at work, I felt I could have handled a situation better than I did. I knew what I wanted to convey, but it came out unsatisfactorly. Being someone who wants to improve themself, I thought I'd get a book relating to this subject matter.
The techniques presented in this book are inapplicable and irrelevant - they don't provide insight, and in my opinion are rediculous - the point where I found myself laughing. Reading this book felt like you were being lectured by your clueless, happy-go-lucky aunt.
Techniques such as "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em", "handle hassles with fun", and saying "you're right" (and meaning it) when people complain, are not realistic techniques to addressing real problem. The one which put me over the edge is her bit "choose to be compassionate" when people fail to meet their most basic responsibilities. According to this technique, if you are in a line at some place of business, and there are 25 people in front of you and one employee, you are supposed to spend the time in line convincing yourself that "it's okay - they are just understaffed". Or, if that employee messes up your order, say an ice cream cone, you are supposed to do the following:
1. "Ask them for their name" - Everyone knows doing this will immediately put the employee on the defensive.
2. "State your Customer Rights and Wishes" - This is going to anger the employee with such a belittling remark.
3. "Ask to see a supervisor" - Oh, really? Gee, I'm glad I'm paying money for such earth shattering advice.
And so on...
Read more ›
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4.0 out of 5 stars don't be put off by the title Jan. 4 2003
By meeD8or
This book was required reading for a course in communications and conflict I am taking for my Master's degree in Negotiaion and Conflict Mangagement. I was initially put off by the title, assumming some pop-psychology-self-help drivel. Ms. Horn subtly integrates principles of martial arts and communications in a highly accessible text. I found many practical suggestions for anyone working in a customer service position, in addition to great relationship tips.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars it has quickly turned into one of my favourite books. Having read it...
I bought this book in all honesty while it was on sale to help add enough for free shipping but after reading it, it has quickly turned into one of my favourite books. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Dana
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding book!
I attended a brief seminar given by Sam Horn. She is an outstanding speaker and Tongue Fu offers practical advice on how to deal with difficult people. Read more
Published on July 12 2001
5.0 out of 5 stars Follow these steps..
You are reading this review by chance or you got to this point searching for Tongue Fu or Sam Horn, the author. Read more
Published on Aug. 17 2000 by Rajiv Sinha
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent training for the workplace and real life
I first read this book as a requirement when I began working at a doctor's office. Since then I've used it's techniques not only for face-to-face verbal conflict but in evaluation... Read more
Published on Sept. 24 1999
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent resource for everyday situations- home or work
This book was a true eye opener. I was able to relate on multiple levels to each scenario presented in each chapter. The book is NOT for the literati-it is a QUICK read. Read more
Published on Dec 30 1998
5.0 out of 5 stars Most fun, useful communication book I've read in 36 yrs.
I now recommend this in my workshops as the best all-round book on communications period. It's fun, short, practical, insightful, easy to remember and useful in every challenging... Read more
Published on Oct. 18 1997 by Michael Buschmohle
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