Regardless of your status, married, single, with or without children, it’s impossible to get through the day without making at least one compromise. Some compromises are small, like carpool schedules, while others are big, like working conditions. Some compromises are tolerable, and we enter them knowing exactly what to expect. But there are strong compromises, the silent type that many of us make daily. They are strong because we are stuck with them and silent because they are unspoken.
To compromise is an art because you can bend only so far without breaking. Having this knowledge about how far you allow yourself to bend is the first step in making sane agreements. This is not an easy task. The more difficult life becomes, the simpler your breaking point must be. The way I see things is simple: if it’s not necessary to survive, then I don’t need it. It’s not negotiable. What I want represents the currency of compromise. I learned to be as flexible and as generous as possible without gagging. I learned to trust my instincts and to pay attention to the physical clues, especially to my gut.
One day, I realized that, regardless how hard I tried to do the right thing, it hadn’t been possible because I wasn’t in the right place where the right things mattered. I was on a crossroad where I had to decide if compromising would be the right thing to do or moving on. And it had been tough to decide, especially when I was inclined to compromise. Then, I thought that if I accepted to compromise on insignificant things, I would be expected to compromise with malevolent things and change who I was.
Compromise wasn’t the key to my survival.
“Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you have got,” said Janis Joplin.