Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Compromise - Our Best Bet for Survival

A writer writes!

On occasions you hear about "win-win" situations.  Or meeting someone "halfway".  Both terms refer to the art of compromise.  What is compromise?  Some would say it is something you should never do.  You may hear someone say, don't compromise your values. Or, don't give in.  Both statements are fair if you in fact do not get something out of the compromise agreement.

An agreement, in my opinion, makes up the foundation of a true compromise.  Parties trade something in order to get something.  A compromise may be a business deal, it may be an arrangement between a husband and wife on  resolving an issue so both the husband and wife walk away feeling that both have gained from the decision.

If compromise does not exist, you will likely have one party that feels animosity towards the other based on the final decision made.  Animosity maintains tension in a relationship and definitely does not make a relationship better. Whether it be an agreement between two countries or two children deciding how to divide up toys during play time, compromise allows both parties to get something that allows them to maintain respect for themselves.  Maintaining respect should always be a consideration when involved in making compromise.

Would you rather make an enemy by getting all you want and giving the other party nothing?  Or would you rather gain the respect and possible friendship of the other party through compromise?  If we want to develop better relations with each other and our fellow inhabitants of this planet we need to place compromise as something that is the prevalent theme.  Of course there may be some moral or ethical issues where compromise will not work.  A group that believes in monogamy versus a group that believes in polygamy may have difficulty reaching compromise on the basic beliefs of each group. But, there may be other economic or social issues that they may be able to agree on via compromise.

There  are situations where compromise may back fire.  When some countries compromised with Adolph Hitler to avoid conflict, that compromise came back to haunt those countries.  Compromise involves trust in the other party.  If there are reasons why you can't trust the other party, then trust at first must be built through actions of both parties.

We as humans have many different viewpoints, beliefs, likes and dislikes.  Only through respect, understanding, and development of compromise solutions can we co exist and not destroy each other.

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