Although being logical when it comes to dealing with life is a highly praised quality we may possess, in some situations it is better to be rational than to be logical. While logic usually works in looking at the large picture, the big picture often requires being rational. In fact, using logic can actually cause us to act irrationality. Let us see how this works.

For example we might use logic in regard to an argument or disagreement we are having with a friend or significant other. During this falling out we might believe the logical correctness of our position and more forcibly drive the point home at the expense of the relationship. Furthermore, our desire to justify our behavior may compel us to find the logic in what we have said or done. This would be a classic case of “winning the battle and losing the war,” where the short term gain is greater than the long term result. In other words, the logic of the moment may overrule the rationality of the long-term picture. Indeed, we often get so wound up with making our point and proving the correctness of position that we fail to see the damage that we are doing to our relationship. The damage I am talking about is the resentment that the other person feels. This resentment often leads to their losing affection and/or respect for us. In addition, it often results in their sooner or later saying or doing things that are detrimental to us. The more often these kinds of interactions occur, the more damage is done to the relationship and, over time, may cause it to fail. In such situations being rational often beats being logical.