Are you unsure how much you should compromise in your relationships? 

To build a healthy relationship, it’s important to negotiate on our differences and this applies to all relationships from work, through to friends, family and our intimate relationship.

We tend to find negotiations easiest in our workplace or business relationships, because there are normally firm boundaries in place. A person knows the rules, which rules are absolute and which can be negotiated on.

Problems more often tend to arise in our personal relationships, because the rules or boundaries are sometimes quite blurred, or vague. This means it can be quite challenging to know whether we are compromising too much or too little.

This particular topic was discussed in one of my workshops recently. There was fear around the consequences of not compromising enough and because of this, it was difficult for this beautiful person to be really clear on what she wanted. This meant she ran the risk of compromising her own peace and happiness.

There is no such thing as a perfect relationship where the other person is exactly as you want them to be. And who would want it to be perfect anyway, because it’s in the imperfection that the growth lies, this builds the relationship.

In saying this though, it’s important to be clear on how much you will compromise, so the relationship is good for you and good for them.

Know yourself well
Most people don’t have full conscious awareness of their own values and this means it becomes difficult to make decisions that fully serve them. When you know your values, this means full clarity around what they are and how you fulfil them, it becomes much easier to make compromises that serve you both.

Know your deal breakers
Be clear on your bottom line and what your absolutes are according to your values. For instance, if honesty is an absolute for you, what is your bottom line? Are you happy for the odd white lie to slip by or is it absolute honesty all the time? If respect is an absolute, what actions do you see as disrespectful and which ones are deal breakers?

Let go of fear
If we go into a negotiation feeling fearful of the consequences, we are more likely to over compromise and this isn’t good for us or for the relationship. It’s in the negotiations that we learn more about each other. This helps the other person know you and helps the relationship grow. Focus on reaching a solution that serves you both instead of feeling fearful of what you could lose

Compromise is important because we are all different; we all value different things and because of this we all find happiness and fulfilment in different ways. A relationship isn’t sustainable if it only serves one person. And it’s only when you come from a place of deep understanding of self and desire to find mutual agreement, you are able to compromise in a way that works.