Taking The High Road
Is taking the high road always commendable? Society says it is a superior way to handle oneself. For those of you who are not certain of what taking the high road means here is the definition. Taking the high road means to take the honest and noble path.
My father obviously agreed because at no time did I see him retaliate and sink to another person’s low level. He remained calm, cool and collected. He was equipped with talent; wisdom, self-control and the skill of negotiation along with the added advantage of a non-confrontational personality. He had the acute ability to know ‘his customer,’ if you know what I mean.
I learned the hard way that taking the high road is not always the correct solution. I assumed my adversary had my values, my empathy and my positive attitude of negating from love, not war.
It’s Not Always The Answer
Taking the high road is not a form of weakness. It is a strength. Some people on the other side of the exchange don’t understand or realize you are coming from strength. In other words, they don’t understand that taking the high road does not necessarily communicate forgiveness. It means you are not going to sink to their level… you are going to negotiate… not retaliate.
Sadly and unfortunately, the high road is not the answer to every situation. I am sure many of you wish you had learned your lesson before you found yourself in the midst of a situation that did not bring a positive outcome when you made the wrong choice of negotiating rather than retaliating.
You see Darlings, before you take the high road you have to ask yourself, “What is the personality and nature of the person I am dealing with?” Society does not have the answer. Friends and family do not have the answer. Only you do.
Things To Remember
There are people, such as family members, that feel they won when you take the high road. They assume they can continue their course of hostility… to actively hurt you or control you. You must remember there are people whose values and morals don’t match yours. Be aware.
These types of people should face consequences for their actions. When you take the high road you remove those consequences. You should retaliate and let them feel the brunt of their damage. Hopefully, they will see the light, learn a lesson and stop hurting you and others.
How do you retaliate? Expose them, call them out. Actually, you are doing them a favor, hopefully making them think twice before they hurt you and others once.
Keep calm while you are in the process of making a decision that is against your positive philosophy. Remember, a change in thoughts can be healthy. You are growing. You are seeing the other side of the coin.
Ask yourself these questions
- What is the evidence for and against a change in my normal course of action… taking the high road? Be objective and not a wuss.
- Is there another way of handling this person?
- Will retaliating instead of taking the high road produce a positive effect? If the answer is yes…
- What action should be taken? And what is a good plan? What if the plan fails?
“Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.” – Churchill.
You never lose from trying. You lose when you don’t listen to your inner voice.
I took the high road when I was certain I should have taken a stand for the sake of the relationship. How did I know? There was a definite pattern of hostile actions. I ignored the signs.
I relied on others to make the decision for me. These people cared about me and some loved me. Nevertheless, I should have listened to my heart and my mind.
Mistakes always bring positive aha wake-ups and wisdom. What did I learn?
I learned that unpleasant situations should be individually weighed. Therefore, taking the high road may be an inappropriate course of action when you are dealing with certain people’s character.
I took away another lesson that bodes me well. Events will happen that we have no choice but to accept. You need two to tango. If one person is unwilling to do the dance, you have no choice but to accept the situation. Acceptance leads to a cleansing of your mind and you will experience newfound freedom to move on.
I love to collect as well as give my friends and family small rocks with meaningful words inscribed on them. I gave my daughter a rock last week that says, protection. One of my stones says, accept. It sits on green moss in my Orchid plant on my desk. It is a reminder that there are some things I cannot change and I have to accept in peace. I do. I can only account for my behavior, not the behavior of others.
Naturally, I will continue to take the high road. It is who I am. A GRANDWOMAN with moxie always prefers a positive path. But, to be GRAND she must also ‘know her customer’ and when push comes to shove and she knows that fighting fire with fire might wake up the other person… she should retaliate with all her might. Amen.
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