better relationships

The Benefits of Retreating

Retreat or withdrawal brings the idea of weakness and defeat to mind. On the surface, it looks as if you are running away because you cannot handle a situation. But at times, you may have to make a planned retreat when faced with overwhelming odds to stage a comeback. A well-planned retreat is a prudent move with benefits that can help you on a personal and a professional level. Read on to find out what the benefits are.

Maintains Relationships

Relationships define our lives. Whether it is on a personal or professional level, most of us have to interact with people. And as you already know, interacting with people is not easy. You have to give and take. In the course of any relationship, you will face conflicts from time to time. Conflicts have the potential to harm a relationship if you do not manage it well. When you find the odds against you, it might be better to retreat to maintain the relationship.

For example, if your boss had a bad day, it would not be wise to ask him for a raise even if you deserve it. On the one hand, he would not be receptive to the idea. On the other hand, you could piss him off and blow your chances in the process. Retreat if the moment is not right to press your case. In doing so, you avoid a needless clash that could cause problems in a relationship.

Preserve Your Strength

You only have so much time and energy to deal with a myriad matters each day. If you expended all your effort into something that does not yield results, it becomes a waste of time and energy. Thus, you have to choose your battles with care. If you find that you cannot get your way in a matter, it is prudent to retreat to preserve your strength.

A child who wants his parents to get him a toy could throw a tantrum until he gets it. A tantrum may or may not get him his toy, but it wastes a lot of energy either way. As adults, we do not have the luxury of focusing on a single object with all our might. But we do have more flexibility in reaching our goals. If we face obstacles in getting what we want, it is better to retreat to find other ways and means to achieve our goals. Life is a marathon, not a sprint.

Prevents Needless Problems

Sometimes insisting on a particular course of action can lead to great resistance and friction. It is better to remain fixed on the goal, but flexible about the methods. If you insist on your way, it might alienate you from others whose help you depend on. This could lead to needless problems in the process. Under such circumstances, it is wise to compromise and retreat on issues that are not so important.

In a group project, everyone has to play his or her part and get along. Finding common ground and mutual understanding is vital to the success of the project. If everyone insisted on his or her point of view, the project would stall. Thus, retreating on issues that are not vital can prevent needless problems.

Choosing Your Time and Place

Timing and situational factors can affect your chances of success. If the times and circumstances are not in your favour, a retreat allows you to prepare for a better opportunity. Change is the only constant in life. If things are against you now, they will go your way in the future if you survive and plan for it. The best way to survive is to retreat for the moment.

Let us say you want to set up a new business. But before you can do so, the economy enters into a recession. People are jittery about things and less willing to spend. Under such circumstances, it would be more prudent to retreat and wait for the economy to pick up. Or you could retreat until you have found a way to leverage on some advantage you have found in your planning and research.

Taking Action

A well-planned retreat is not a sign of weakness or defeat. It can prevent needless problems from standing between you and your goals. In the greater scheme of things, it preserves your strength until you are in a position to press your advantage. Thus, you should make it a point to be aware of your situation. When you can advance and retreat in tune with the times and circumstances, you will be more likely to reach your goals.

The Vizier blogs at Han of Harmony. Here, he gives tips on how to live life in harmony with the times and circumstances. The Vizier enjoys learning and finding new ways to deal with the challenges of life.  Whether it is gaining inspiration from books, observing people or just living life, he learns and reflects so that he can share his insights with others.

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