Fight Less, Love More: Pick Your Battles
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We’ve all heard the saying, “pick your battles.” That sounds like a good way to reduce unnecessary fights, but exactly how are we supposed to pick the right ones? When I ask people what they think, they often say, “Just pick the ones that are worth it,” or “Pick the ones you think you can win.” But if you follow that advice, prepare yourself for more battles, not fewer.
If we want to reduce the number of fights we have with our spouse, children, colleagues and friends, there is only one way to do it: smarten up. How do you do that? It’s easy. Before you open your mouth to give unwanted advice or criticism, ask yourself: Does this actually affect me? If the answer is no, say nothing. Don’t pick that battle.
To illustrate the wisdom of this simple question, I’ll share a little story. A husband (who shall remain nameless) was heading to work one summer day when his wife thoughtfully suggested he take an umbrella because the weather report said there was a high chance of rain. When the husband returned home that evening with dripping-wet hair, his wife watched him shake off his coat and pull off his soaked shoes. She instinctively blurted out, “I told you to take an umbrella,” to which the husband replied, “I don’t mind getting a little wet.”
And then the fight began -->