I am currently shopping for a car. As a matter of fact, every few years or so I find myself in the market for a car, for one reason or another. Because I have gone through the process of purchasing a car multiple times, I have learned some lessons that I think have a much broader application. In fact, I think negotiating business deals and purchases is lot like negotiating relationships and life decisions. In my opinion, knowing your walk away point is the most important part of the car buying process. And lately, I have seen the importance of knowing your walk away point highlighted in several life situations.
“Walk away point” is a term used in negotiations that refers to the minimally acceptable outcome for you in a given situation. It’s the must-haves that you won’t budge on. If a given situation, exchange, or purchase does not meet your requirement, and no agreeable compromise can be reached, it’s the point where you walk away from the negotiating table.
This concept just as easily applies to relationships, whether they are friendships, business partnerships, romantic relationships or otherwise. So friends, I need to ask you a serious question. What is your walk away point?
We negotiate relationships decisions all the time, whether we realize it or not. Inherent in any relationship is give and take. But if we are not clear on what we are willing to accept and what are willing to concede, then we are in danger of giving up too much, staying too long, or being taken advantage of. So we need to have a walk away point in these situations as well. Remember, the walk away point is the point at which you stop negotiating and say, “I appreciate what you are offering, but no thank you.” And a walk away point is not something you determine on the fly. It’s something you know before you go. This ensures you don’t end up negotiating your non-negotiables.
I know this may seem harsh, especially for those of us who are long-suffering, merciful, and always see the best in people. But walking away doesn’t mean devaluing others or burning bridges. It simply means acknowledging when the relationship is no longer mutually beneficial. Even in doing the hard work of sharing the gospel, Jesus advised his followers there would be times when they would have to “shake the dust off of their sandals” and move on to the next place.
In Matthew 10:11-14 Jesus says: 11) Whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy there and stay at his housed until you move on. 12) As you enter the home, greet its occupants. 13) If the home is worthy, let your peace rest on it; but if it is not, let your peace return to you. 14) And if anyone will not welcome you or heed your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that home or town.
Ouch, right!? Wait a minute, not so fast. Leaving was not the disciples abandoning their assignment. It was actually them fulfilling it. In leaving the places that would not receive them, they were able to go invest their time in people and places that would.
The mission of the disciples didn’t change, it remained the same. They just had to have the wisdom to know where the mission field was. Every mission is activated by the right place and the right people. They couldn’t be effective missionaries until they got to the right mission field. Even Jesus’ effectiveness was limited when he was in Nazareth, a region where people simply couldn’t see Him for who He was (Matthew 13:58).
Are you willing to admit that maybe the place or person that you’re investing in isn’t “worthy”?
Of course, any walk away decision should be made carefully and prayerfully. And of course, I’m not telling you to quit your job or marriage. But what I am suggesting is that it’s wise to determine your standards, your must-haves, and your minimally acceptable outcomes on the font-end. And don’t be afraid to walk away from situations or people that don’t complement your purpose.
Relationships are serious business and having healthy ones is essential. I have a lot more to share on this topic, so I’ve planned some more blog content and maybe even a video or two that will help you evaluate the way you approach relationships. If you are not already a Light Room Insider, subscribe below to have each new post delivered directly to your email inbox.
Living In The Light,