Tug Of War - Grasshopper
I remember as a kid, we would play tug-of-war. Somebody would bring a rope to school and a bunch of us guys, never girls, would line up on each side and grab hold of the rope and try and pull the other side across a line. It was great fun, and pretty good exercise as well.
As adults, we play a different kind of tug-of-war. It’s the same concept, only we’re trying to yank others over to our way of thinking. Let’s call it tug-of-war without a rope.
To my mind, there’s too much of “let’s do it my way” in this adult version of the game. That mindset lends itself to a lot of oppositional pulling.
If you go into any type of negotiation, whether it be personal or professional, and your position is set in concrete, prepare to have others pull in an opposite direction.
It’s productive to have an openness to other options. It keeps others from digging in their heels and straining even harder to pull you in another direction.
To get more of what you want, it’s useful to consider what they want. Nobody’s gettin’ everything.
Being open is less adversarial and cuts down the time it takes to come to an agreement. “My way or the highway” is the quickest way to find yourself being pulled through the mud on the losing end of the rope.
I believe “compromise” has to make a return visit to our lives. It’s the missing piece in keeping the peace. Without it, life will remain a permanent game of tug-of war.
All the best,
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