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Pick your battles

If I have to say one sad thing about my experiences is that I try to get along with people and not fight, yet I get drawn into battles. As I get older, not as much. But sometimes you get drawn in. If you can avoid a conflict, do it, as long as it’s not to your detriment.

I recently had a situation that could have led to a huge battle and I realized that avoiding the conflict by making an agreement was the best way to go, to save time and to save an opportunity that had rewarded me substantially over the last few years.

Not every conflict needs a word war, you need to pick and choose your battles. Some battles are necessary, most are not. Battles can cost money and relationships. I remember my time as an editor at the Stony Brook Statesman. It was a one-year stint and it felt like 5 years because of the time spent and the needless battles, arguing over nothing, in the scheme of things. Communicate, tell people what you want and need. Don’t be passive-aggressive, tell them what you’re thinking.

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