“It is better to be happy than right”.

I say this phrase to myself on the very rare occasion that my husband and I have a disagreement, “is it better to be happy or right in this situation?” and 99.9 percent of the time I choose happy. He walks away thinking he was right, and I walk away knowing I was right… just kidding.

Too often I hear about disagreements in our industry that have blown out into World War three, all because someone chose to be right instead of happy. It normally starts over something as simple as a whinging owner complaining about a wrapper on the pathway, and then the manager telling the old bird to pick it up herself, let the battle begin.

Now before I continue, in no way am I saying let the bullies in your complex get away with hurtful and destructive behaviour. If you feel you are being mistreated, then I wholeheartedly agree you should go into battle with all the ammunition and armour necessary.

However, in this industry you do need to pick your battles wisely, if the whinging ‘old bird’ asks you to pick up the wrapper my advice would be to pick it up, thank her for being so observant then continue to chat about her cats. You don’t want a retired, grumpy person upset with you, they have all the time in the world to battle and it never ends well.

The management rights industry is a people business, you must learn to navigate your way around different personalities and use those amazing people skills to build and nurture even the most difficult individuals. Sometimes you might find those with the most difficult personalities can sometimes be the best allies.

Here is a little tip that I use when I feel that a confrontation may be ahead. I ask myself “Will this affect me for 10 mins, 10 weeks or 10 years” if it is 10 mins I generally walk away, 10 weeks I try to compromise, 10 years, well I am putting on my armour and starting to look like Mel Gibson in Braveheart.

Perspective is a powerful thing to have in life, especially in conflict.

To start the new year, I want to challenge you all to step back and look at the confrontations you are having (if any) and do the 10,10,10 rule. If it really isn’t that important it might be the time to be happy not right.

Remember it takes 43 muscles to frown and 17 to smile: “Mr Google”. Life is too short, let’s smile more.