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How to Truly Compromise

And Not Argue About It Later

"I hate the fact that people think 'compromise' is a dirty word."
- Barbara Bush

Comprising can be a difficult thing, especially when you've worked so hard to make up your mind and validate your opinion. Compromising with a loved one is easier, but can still lead to arguments and feeling like one of you hadn't gotten what they wanted.

Here's why learning to both want the same things is key...

I'm going to work from a recent scenario that happened to me and my other half involving a big decision about our home. We were looking to buy some doors. Our house gets incredibly cold with our current single-glazed, old, wooden doors. We knew why we needed them and what the minimum practical requirements were, we just needed to figure out how we wanted them to look.

We chose different colours, we liked different styles, and we both wanted composite. (So, that was one thing.) We ended up choosing blue for me, and grey for him. We looked and looked at them, and after talking it through, we BOTH decided we liked blue. (I actually preferred the grey after a while.) Then it was onto the door furniture, talking the colours, and handle types through, logically, meant we were able to come to an agreed conclusion quickly.

And now we're just waiting for the doors to be fitted!

1. Listen to each other's opinions, even if you don't agree.

You both have a voice, so why should one have more to say than the other? You both have either logic or emotion to support your preference and both are just as important so take the time to listen to each other and absorb what you're being told. This way when it comes to making the all important decision you both understand where the other is coming from and can make a comprise so you're both happy and feel like you are getting what you want. It's also important to give up something for your other half, and they should do the same for you.

2. Give your other half time to digest what's being said.

Not everyone's brain works at the same speed and it certainly isn't an indication of intelligence. Giving each other time to process what is being said, how they feel about it, and how they might want to respond makes any discussion easier, less likely to end up in an argument, and more likely to come to a resolution you're both happy with.

3. Don't be so... dominant.

You might be used to "wearing the trousers" or getting your own way, but does that really leave the other person feeling valued and loved? Not really. Even if it is within your nature to be the dominant one (or leader, whichever phrase you choose), it's essential that you learn to, not take a back seat, but be equal with your partner and deal with the situation together.

4. Start from common ground.

Whatever challenging situation you find yourselves in make sure you start from somewhere where you are both in agreement on. Take steps to try and keep on the same path and using the previous three pieces of advice. Once you are able to get on the same page you'll see each other's perspectives, keep moving forward to come to a conclusion.

We've been together nearly 11 years, we've had some cracking arguments, but more recently we've really learned to listen and value each other, meaning we resolve problems much more quickly, so we can just get on with our lives!

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How to Truly Compromise
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