Agree to disagree is an expression that refers to when two people or counterparts, decide not to argue about some subject, simply because neither of them is changing their opinion.
“Agree to disagree” how often do you stand for this? It takes some level of maturity, respect or tolerance and, empathy for the counterpart, mate, best friend, better half, or any relative person who has opposite opinions.
Because that means having the courage to stand and defend for what you believe, while you respect the other person’s opinion… Which is not the same as defrauding yourself into just agreeing.
Or defrauding the other person, pretending that you agree, or even worst: not respecting the other’s positioning and getting into being manipulative and acting deceitfully, pretending to understand, until you convince the other to "convert". Kind of a waltz of pretending to be.
So what are you going to do? Being agreeable all the time, standing for your disagreeableness, truly understanding the other part, or just pretending you do?
1. Understanding, Agree Or, Just Pretending You Do?
First of all: understanding is not agreeing.
Understanding is walking in other peoples’ shoes, is kind of saying "I feel you": you put yourself in other peoples’ positions, see what they see, analyze what are they are putting as a priority, as important. And then you might get to understand the other person.
Agreeing is a whole different issue: it means you share the same perspective about a certain thing, underneath that: there’s a shared value. You share the same value on the issue.
The other face of agreeing: might be just for avoiding confrontation just because one might fear being punished or outcasted by their peers.
Once your “agreement” is based on fear of rejection, and you might even run over your own values not considering them: you’re just agreeing to please others. That’s not agreeing that’s self-betrayal.
What about pretending to understand? Well: pretending says it all. Someone is deceiving someone. It doesn’t end well. In any kind of valuable relationship.
Its’ a challenge in the midst of a conflict not to tend to convince the other person that one’s truth is the one that’s right. If you are courageous enough to stand for your truth.
There’s a rainbow of options, of possibilities, of perspectives if we don’t limit ourselves or others to herd behavior. Two points of view can co-exist without canceling each other out while expanding the understanding of both parties.
We do have a tendency to have this herd behavior: if one is not for me, then one is against me. And most of the time: it isn’t so.
And when a person feels that might not be understood: might fall into the temptation of just apparently … accepting. Without inner agreeing.
2. Accepting. Agreeing. Not The Same Either.
Acceptance, by definition, is the act of receiving something that is offered to you, with acquiescence, approbation.
You know that saying: “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference”?
It suits this purpose.
There are things that we have to accept because they cannot be changed. Examples? Whatever that is in the past, your genes that were offered by your ancestors. But neither define you as a whole person.
Except for the past and the genes, all the rest: you don’t have to accept.
Of course is nonsense not to accept a blessing, a good offer, a gift. But not all of them are: some are poisoned gifts.
And you have the ability and, the free will to say NO.
You have to filter them, whatever is being offered... What is the filter? Your values. Your hierarchy of values.
Let’s face it: It’s a live trap. If you accept things you do not agree with: then it’s a trap you are setting for yourself.
Sooner or later you're going to face yourself with an inner conflict.
Those are the worst conflict one can have during life: when you “stab” a core value. Not all values are core values, some values change throughout life. Everyone has them. And they're not the same for each person.
And when you go through life avoiding conflict with others based on fear of group rejection, it's inevitable that will face yourself sooner or later.
What to do? Agree to disagree: that’s almost your Superpower.
3. Agree To Disagree: That’s Almost A Superpower
Getting into a mental state of agreeing to disagree is a whole different level, it's an upswing: it’s almost a superpower.
It’s a superpower but attainable and at the reach of your hand.
Agree to disagree with no put-down, no undervalue, no harsh feelings.
The worst it can happen is that you naturally detach yourself from people who actually don’t serve your purpose, simply because you don’t share the same core values.
It works as a filter. It doesn’t mean that you don’t get along with them: it just means you’re setting necessary boundaries on your relationships.
Deep relationships or less profound: they are real. Because you show up as real.
4.1 Yes it demands some effort.
It demands effort, to show up as real demands. And the first effort you have to make is no lying to yourself (sometimes we lie to ourselves jts to justify going through an easier way, a known path). Because you have to let go of some hidden need to please others, being approved by others, or being consensual all the time so that people like you.
Guess what: not everybody has to like you. And that’s just fine. It’s a good sign.
4.2 Yes it demands some courage.
Knowing that some people might not like you for showing up as real, and still do: demands courage. But it pays off. Let’s face it: if we’re talking about the quality of your relationships, might they be professional or personal: it pays off.
One: because you are being a person of trust. Your word has value. Your word means something. Because you’re not saying one thing to “A” and another to “B” about the same idea, concept, problem…
4.3 You become trustworthy to yourself
That trust comes from your own notion of being able to deal with whatever comes your way: including an unpleasant face, people that don’t approve the way you think, people that somehow might disappoint you?
You trust that you’ll be able to deal with whatever: you trust yourself.
So, the far most important feature of this superpower: you are respecting yourself, your values, what you believe in.
So, you improve the way you see yourself, your self-image: you’ll feel that inner pride. You see yourself as a person trustworthy for yourself. And you’ll inspire others to trust you too.
4.4 You become trustworthy to yourself
They know what to count from you. That’s the other benefit: you show who you are and you get to know who is who.
When you state what you believe to be true for you, from your perspective, you’re setting boundaries and if you are also respecting the other person's boundaries: we have a healthy relationship. Professional or personal.
Because you trained yourself to disagree, with no fear of showing who you are, but politely, respecting the other person’s point of view.
Because you’ve walked in others people’s shoes: you understand.
But you may not agree, And if you don't agree, maybe you shouldn't accept it, not if it hurts your own core values.
You agree to disagree.
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Hey! I'm Eunice Veloso and you'll find more about me on my About Page
Antoine Lavoisier, 1789
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