When I hear the word ‘COMPROMISE’ it sends shivers down my spine. It’s the same sensation as when someone runs their nails down a blackboard.
It's so often suggested that we should compromise in relationships. But that word conjures up a situation where one person wins and the other has to forgo something that is important to them.
I much prefer the word ‘NEGOTIATE
Because that word means finding a way together to find a solution that satisfies each person’s need and want. It's much more collaborative.
Maybe it’s just a word, but it can make such a difference when trying to find a solution.
Trying to force the other person to agree to your terms, (meaning you win) can lead to bullying behaviour and resentment by the ‘loser’.
In many disagreements, we have to relinquish something, but isn’t it better to feel you are in it together, that you have listened to each other’s point of view, and have a better understanding of each other, rather than being determined to win the argument at any cost, being the one who has to give in?
If you are only focussed on winning the argument, there really is only one loser - the Relationship.
Focussing on winning can come in many forms -
Nagging - when someone continually goes on about something, you are likely to stop listening, which defeats the object of the nagger!
Bullying - shouting your partner down, being sarcastic, or offensive is disrespectful and is unlikely to lead to any kind of meaningful relationship.
Blaming - if you never take responsibility for your actions and always blaming the other person, you are likely to cause your partner to become defensive, and they are certainly not likely to listen to your point of view..
Bearing a grudge - bringing things up from the past continually is destructive, and probably isn’t relevant to the current issue.
All of the above get in the way of working towards solving a problem or being able to negotiate a way forward together.
By listening respectfully and allowing the other person to share their opinion and thoughts, you are more likely to hear something you hadn’t considered. At the same time learning more about each other and creating a deeper more meaningful relationship.