Key #24. Be gracious.

If your partner is plainly wrong, or has made a mistake, and it’s not important, let it go. Don’t correct the person. Let it slide. You don’t always have to be right.



‘Wrong cannot afford defeat, but right can.’

Rabindranath Tagore.

Every time we find fault with someone we sever a silken strand. If you can let the little things go without feeling irritated or resentful, do so. Your companion will feel safer in your company, and more relaxed. And feel closer to you.

‘Oh, the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person; having neither to weigh thoughts nor to measure words but to pour them out, just as it is, chaff and grain together, knowing that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keeping what is worth keeping, and then, with the breath of kindness, blow the rest away.’
Dinah Maria (Mulock) Craik (1826-1887) from her book, “A Life for a Life”, published in 1859.

It might be difficult to refrain at first, but you will get used to it. It can even be liberating at times, because you can feel yourself ‘letting go’.


‘I studied what makes repair attempts work for a couple of years before realising that instead of looking at the person making it, I had to look at the person receiving it: what makes the difference is accepting your partner’s attempt at repair.’
Psychologist John Gottman, telling Alison George of ‘New Scientist’, 29 April, 2006.

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