Burying the hatchet

November 19, 2014

Yesterday I asked the leader of a group of businessmen who tried to cheat me on a land deal one year ago to help me mend a broken relationship with only one man – who I believe attempted to cheat me.

What I have done here is to feign that I am not aware that at least eight people are involved in trying to cheat me….and the impression given to this elder is that to the best of my knowledge, this matter involves only one person.

This is to give the rest a face saving way out of this impasse that has continued for over a year. This strategy is designed to divide them and to give them the necessary incentive to put the all the blame on this one scapegoat.

The question now is do these people know that I know that the rest of the seven are involved? Or do they really believe that I only believe this plot involves only one person and no more?

This is vital…jugular even.I need to be able to answer this question 100%. Because my goal is to convey to these bent businessmen in the clearest possible manner that I know exactly who is involved, but since I have only singled out one scapegoat in the group to the lay the blame on. My hope is this will simplify the process of reconciliation immeasurably for all concerned.

But if they do not know….I know the role played by the others and along with the measure of their culpability. Then they may interpret this as a sign of stupidity and possibly cowardice and this latest move is likely to embolden them to do this again and this whole plan may backfire.

It is a very very delicate matter, that involves a mix diplomacy, brinkmanship and strategy.

The problem is I do not know what they think…..I only have three more days to decide whether to go ahead with this or to pull out.

One I sit down on the chair to the east, break a pair of chopstick and put them over a tea cup….in the language of the old country….I have crossed the point of no return.

I must remain calm. As this matter is making me very anxious.

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‘In my view, it is not necessary for people who have wronged me to apologize. That expectation is akin to wishful thinking. Of course, if they do so, that’s really the gold standard and it will definitely make my job of burying the hatchet much easier.

But for most the time. Even when seemingly reasonable people wrong – they rarely ever offer an open apology. Some are even worse. They do ridiculous things like leaving it beneath the feet of Mr 10% or take cold comfort in the idea – time will heal and make things right.

Truth is. Time really only makes things worse. As when broken fellowship is not mended within a reasonable time – both sides will eventually grow more distanced….positions will begin to harden….and attitudes will fossilize to such a point where all hope of reconciliation will gradually become so faint that no one will even take the initiative to make the first peaceful overtures – that’s because apologizing is never easy. As having to say, I am sorry places the apologist in a default position where he or she will always be vulnerable and stands to lose much more than remaining stoically silent.

Hence most people will simply never offer you an apology even if you deserve one. To me it’s not an ego issue. As much as a strategic disadvantage to do so. Truth is apologizing confers absolutely no bargaining power to the apologist and effectively renders the balance of power in favor of the aggrieved party.

That’s why it’s so important to make it easy for the other side to come to the negotiating table.

After all if like me, you have already made your point loud and clear – that you are not happy with what transpired….you consider it an insult….and effrontery and if like me you have waged a Cold War lasting one entire year where everyone who has wronged you can feel your coldness along with your seething anger….then the point has already been successful made and it’s time to move right on.

Knowing WHEN and HOW to bury the hatchet is the highest acme of leadership. As when a man is able to do just this – it simply means he is able to step back and appreciate the larger scheme of things that enables him to put his private grievances and hurt beneath the idea of the common good.’

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