Welcome to Life Mastery Soul Memos, Episode 2! Where each month, WU World-Changer and your Life Mastery Coach, David McLeod, will share a new soul memo with you!
Most people would agree that compromise is a good thing. It’s a way for us to find common ground whenever we have a dispute or conflict over something that everyone in a relationship considers important. This is true whether the relationship is personal or professional, work-related or otherwise. Basically, the idea is that, in order to find a solution that maximizes the desirable outcome for everyone involved, each party is willing to sacrifice certain wants or desires that are considered to be less important. All of us have our lists of “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves;” when it comes to compromise, most of us are willing to give up items on our “nice-to-have” list as long as we get all the things on our “must-have” list.
This approach to conflict resolution is tried and true, and works well in just about any relationship you can imagine. But sometimes, we can take the idea of compromise too far, particularly when we begin to sacrifice ourselves or our beliefs as part of the process.
I remember, when I was only three years old, my mother said eight words to me that essentially led me to unconsciously disown myself completely for the next 40 years or so. In an attempt to control my naturally rambunctious (some would say rebellious) nature, she looked me right in the eye and she said, with total conviction, “I know you better than you know yourself.” Now she didn’t deliver these words with malice, but she was dead serious, and my young three-year-old mind immediately accepted those words as true. Because I trusted my Mom, I soon came to believe that everyone knew me better than I knew myself, so I was constantly looking outside myself for confirmation of who I was and what I wanted and needed. In a very real sense, I unwittingly compromised the truth of who I am in order to accommodate everyone else’s opinion and expectation of me.
Even after I became aware of this peculiar and dysfunctional way of thinking, it still took me several years to unravel my twisted belief systems and reclaim my true self. The lesson for me was very powerful:
Feel free to compromise a position, but never compromise who you are.
Remember, you are a sovereign being and you never have to capitulate to anyone else. Stay true to who you really are, no matter what is going on in your life, and you will find that everything about your life will blossom and grow in ways that you have only imagined.
David McLeod is a featured author in The Wellness Universe Guide to Complete Self-Care, 25 Tools for Stress Relief. Learn more about this book by joining our Book Club.
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