"I ain't settling for anything less than everything."
Ah, it's music to my ears - quite literally. That Sugarland song is extremely catchy!
I have been struggling lately on what it means to make a concession and what the challenges of settling are. Back in September, I wrote a post on compromising. My thought process may have shifted a bit, but if you're wondering if I still believe in compromise, the answer is yes, I do.
Let's preface this a little. To a large extent, relationships are full of compromise. When two people merge their lives together, you're going to get an array of personalities, desires, and demands. With that being said, you can expect some work ahead. It's important to be flexible in your relationship and to be open to some negotiating here and there, but make sure you remain true to yourself and refrain from wavering on issues that don't need compromising.
The essence of who you are.
This shouldn't even be up for debate. Your personality and your dreams should be respected and appreciated by your significant other. If you find yourself feeling like you have to sacrifice things that make you distinctively you, you are having to compromise too much of yourself.
Your basic moral system.
These morals and values are placed deep within our soul and should be held and honored there with the utmost respect. If you give up on these values, your conscious will suffer. It is then that you will resent your partner. There's a very good chance that you can find someone who shares your same moral system and the two of you can use it as a guide throughout life.
How you feel about yourself.
No woman should ever question her worth. If your self-esteem is being diminished or your flaws are being acknowledged, then it's time to reevaluate this person's place in your life. You should be appreciated. And admired. And loved. For everything you are.
It's imperative that you maintain your own personal interests and personality quirks. It's normal to experience some co-dependency in relationships, but don't let it get so far that you forget how to function as an individual. Celebrate those differences that you all have in the relationship, but never sacrifice your individuality for someone else.
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If compromising lessens who you are as a person, or makes you feel taken advantage of, then you've reached an unhealthy level of compromise. The ability to compromise effectively requires a mutual respect, honesty, and good intentions. Don't let making concessions diminish either person as an individual, but instead let it strengthen the relationship as a whole. The right amount of compromise leads to a happier and healthier life for you and yours.