Let it Go, Let it Flow: 7 People You Should Pick Your Battles With
By Kendra Koger
Life is stressful enough that every single issue that is presented to us does not need to turn into an argument. Sometimes it’s important and very mature to learn how to pick and choose our battles. Though these topics can be annoying when they’re being brought up, sometimes it’s good to either stop being defensive, remember the good intentions, or placate the person addressing you. Too many times angry words turn into angry actions and honestly, instead of striving to look like “Bad Girls,” we should be striving to showcase ourselves as women. To do so, here are some people who arguing with just isn’t worth the time.
That stranger that has annoyed you in some way.
So you’re walking down the street, the wind’s blowing through your hair, the sun’s shining on your face, and life feels good. Then suddenly, someone walking in the opposite direction bumps into you. Taken off guard, you look up at them and all that person does is regain their composure and keep on walking to their destination, leaving you with no type of apology or even an “excuse me.” As much as you might want to catch up with that person and teach them the home training their mother should have years ago, sometimes its better to just let it go. Life is full of rude people, and it’s not worth (best case scenario) being late for your job or an appointment, or (worst case scenario) being physically hurt or killed because you’re popping off at the mouth. So if you’re walking and a person bumps into you, or if you’re walking behind a person opening a door and they don’t hold it for you, or if someone is just staring at you for no reason, getting an attitude and snapping at them could be more detrimental to you than them.
“Girl, let me tell you about this one time. My stupid boss told me to fill out some paper work in black ink, but I didn’t feel like looking for a black pen, so I did it in blue ink. Then he had the NERVE to get upset at me! So I went off on him! Who cares, I mean, ink is ink… Uh huh, girl! He was just trying to be petty! As long as the paperwork got filled out some way, and-”
“Girl, let me call you back, the people at the unemployment line called my number…”
This argument should be a no-brainer to avoid, but I’ve personally seen it happen multiple times. Everyone has moments where a boss (either past or present) has a set of demands that might seem a little… out there, but your job as their subordinate is to be, well… subordinate. Your job is to do whatever tasks the boss wants you to do. Being combative and argumentative with your boss might feel really good, but we hope it still feels good when you’re at home reminiscing on how you told the boss off while you’re applying for new jobs online.
Your parents and grandparents (when you have a child)
Ah parents, parents, parents. So knowing, so loving, so… sometimes extremely critical. They never really seem to know the answers to the questions that you want, but have all the answers to questions that you never ask. This seems even more apparent when you have a child. Your parents might not remember what foods they used to help transition you, how they got you to nap, or what they did to help you go to sleep at night, but they definitely have an opinion on when you’re changing your child’s diaper too much, if they don’t like the snack you’re giving your child, or if there’s something wrong about your child not talking… by the time they’re 12 months old. However, as much as you would like to just tell your parents to “shut the [expletive] up,” the simple truth is, they mean no harm and they honestly just want to offer you their pearls of expertise… even though you didn’t ask. So instead of going off, just nod politely and smile; you might actually learn something helpful. I mean, they did raise you, and you turned out fine… I hope.
Just like your parents, they are a vast well of information that is willing to spill over you when you don’t ask for their opinion. As much as you would like to think that when you marry that “special” someone that the two of you are going to start your “special” lives together, just the “special” two of you. However, your new spouse comes with a brood of family members. Sometimes these members can be easy to handle, and other times they’re not. However, once you say “I do,” they come as a package deal; even more so if there are children are in the mix (meaning that even if you and that “special” person divorce, they are still your child’s family, and you’ll be tied to them for the rest of your child’s life). To help deal, just look at their intentions. These people knew your spouse YEARS before you, so they’ve seen the good, the bad, and the adolescently awkward. Even though people are different with their families than they are with their mates, it’s good to have background information to fill in those blank holes that motivate your spouse to behave the way that he/she does. So, no matter how frustrated you might get with one of them who always seem to be prying into your personal life, or trying to dictate how you should behave with your new spouse, telling them off might not feel as liberating when you have to go to a family reunion with the same people you verbally spanked.
At your job, you and your coworkers are relatively making the same amount, but one coworker just keeps on acting like he/she is the head honcho. They try to delegate tasks, have all these “wonderful” ideas that they want everyone to do, and if they have an opinion they are expecting you to drop yours and jump on their okie-doke. As much as you might want to cut that person down to size and remind them that besides the name on the check, both checks are identical, you might want to reassess going in this direction. Is the worker still getting their job done? Does your boss seem happy? Are you still getting paid? If the answer is yes to these questions, then who cares if this coworker is delusional? At the end of the day, if you indulge in your impulse to tell them where to put all their crap ideas, all it’s going to do is cause dissension in the work place and make the boss look at you differently.
You have a special way of doing things, keeping things in order, and even cleaning things. You get married and you never really think about discussing how your spouse does these mundane things, but you wish you had when you start getting aggravated by how they load the dishwasher incorrectly, how sloppily they do laundry, or how they don’t feed the children the way you want them to be fed. One’s first notion could be to address the situation. However, usually when people feel nitpicked and criticized for doing something to help you out and you still find a reason to complain that could plant the seeds for resentment. A lot of times, in marriage it becomes a power struggle on deciding which person could get the other to conform to their way of doing things. However, to have a peaceful marriage, it’s all about picking and choosing your battles. So what if your spouse washes the dishes a certain way? Are the dishes still getting clean? If so, maybe that’s not an argument to initiate.
Your friends love you and all they want is the best for you. So, when you’re having a hard time finding employment, and they bring up going to a trade school for the fourteenth time, even though you already got your degree in a particular field and you’re already buried in student loan debt from your university, you kind of would like to tell your friend to buzz off. You don’t mind working a job in fast food, or retail until you find a job that’s hiring in your field, but that’s not what your friend wants you to do. They want to make sure that you have better job security, and that’s what you need to remind yourself when your friend emails you websites to certain trade schools, culinary schools, and deep tissue massage learning sessions. After all, a friend who cares enough to help you find security is a pretty good friend. Instead of going off, sit down with said friend and explain that you’re determined to find a job in your chosen profession. However, keep some of those brochures, because in this economy, learning how to massage might be a pretty good side hustle, you know what I mean?
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