It is important to realise that based on each individual’s life experiences, passions, likes and dislikes, family upbringing and culture, we have each developed different priorities in our life. Some priorities we are aware of and some we are not.
For instance, while I may find "having fun" a priority, someone else may find, "getting things done" a priority. In relationships with others, it is important to be aware of each other priorities and what they see as a sacrifice.
Couples often argue about money. One may say, we should spend our money because we need to enjoy it and you only live once! You could get hit by a car the next day or get ill and you can’t wait until retirement to enjoy your money. While the other partner may say, we need to have savings first before we travel. We need money for retirement. If we make sacrifices when we are young, we’ll have more for later. These two opposing views could lead to many arguments at home.
So, how do we resolve different priorities from others?
First, it is to be aware that everyone comes to their thoughts and options based on their culture, upbringing, and life experiences. Therefore, sacrifices need to be based on the individual. What may be easy for you, isn't what’s easy for someone else. It may be easy for you to give up your leisure time to drive your kids to all of their activities. It might not be that easy for someone else.
When you have a disagreement in relationship to someone else, ask them or try to find out what is a priority for them and find a compromise that will work for the both of you.
For me, I place my exercise as a priority. So much so that I wake up at 5am to get to the gym 4-5x/wk for 6am. I understand that not everyone does this. They may have a different routine or work out late at night or work early that does not allow for this. While it’s a small sacrifice for me, it’s hard for others and I am aware of this. So, when I recommend exercise to my patients, I need to figure out their priorities before making recommendations for better follow through.
Next time you’re in an argument with someone else, ask yourself do we simply have different priorities? Or Am I weighing my sacrifices against theirs, which is not fair as they do not have my same life experiences.
Dr. Amanda is a non-traditional chiropractor who focuses on Neuro-Optimization in Ottawa, Canada.