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Fola Daniel Adelesi: The Temptation to Compromise



In these times when some people are trying really hard to keep their values and their character clean, there’s the increasing temptation to compromise. In every minute it looks harder or even senseless to keep the values that you thought will make you stand out. You have responsibilities that seem hard to meet, and the easy way out seems to follow the offered compromise to do all that you need to do.

Think about organisations, work places or even religious centres. Not too many people encourage the values we lauded. Those who try hard to uphold those values are the ones who are tempted more to renounce their values and follow the norm of doing the unacceptable in order to become accepted by the public.

I was speaking to someone recently and he asked how one can keep his values in these times without joining the bandwagon. Back at home, there are financial challenges – you have a family to look after. There is a wife that must get upkeep and children whose should go to school. The bills are piling while the salary remains static.

In fact, I saw a satirical cartoon showing some grownups and dwarf among them. The man who stood in front of the grownups (food stuff, rent, school fees and others) was asking the dwarf (salary) why he has refused to grow while others where really growing fast.

You may look around and there is no one to help. There is no one to borrow you money or help you start a business. You keep talking to different people but there is no way out so long as you are asking them to help you do something legitimate.

The moment you think about something that may not be legitimate or morally acceptable, you might get help instantly. When you need help to defraud organisations today, there are those who would have come to offer you that help or are on standby to help you. On daily basis you see others doing it but you don’t want to do it. You want to take a stand against all odds.

Interestingly as you intend to take a stand and are working hard at it all day, more and more challenges are staring you in the face. Just then you realize that a school term is coming to an end and that means another bill is due. You are running out of food at home and madam’s patience only lasts as long as the last grain. The gas is out and the kerosene is only being managed. In the midst of all, rent is only a few months away.

Your salary can barely pay all the needed bills and in some organisations, it does not come when it’s due. While a few people are smiling towards the ATM machines on the twenty fifth day of the month, you will be looking up to the skies on the fiftieth day (the following month) and even with no certainty.

Either as men or women, we may repeatedly find ourselves in these situations. We know we need some other streams of income to make things easier. We know if we have other businesses the pressure will reduce. The other side is that you have not even been able to set aside that money for the other business because of the current necessary bills.

Things look very hard and your guard seem to be coming lower and lower. In all of these, the temptation to compromise becomes stronger while you are struggling to take a stand.

Now let me ask you, rather than trying to be the know it all. How do you survive the temptation for compromise in the face of increasing challenges that need to be dealt with daily?

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | InnovatedCaptures

Fola Daniel Adelesi (also Fola Daniel Speaks) is a Professional Public Speaker, Learning & Development Expert, Communications Professional, and an author of more than 13 books. He's a highly engaging training facilitator who holds his audience spellbound when speaking at gatherings. Apart from his several platforms which include banks, insurance companies, and religious organizations, he has been part of some national television shows and he spoke so intelligently. Some of his published books include: - Get Up and Hit That Goal - Basic Skills for Outstanding Leadership - Breaking Grounds Despite Backgrounds - Writing Business Proposals - Indebted to Ignorance He's also a highly skilled master of ceremony with excellent poise and diction who is endeared to many corporate clients. He was on the Debaters TV reality show Season 1, he presented 'You Can' on Radio Continental in 2011 and he did motivational segments on Galaxy Television from Dec. 2008 to August 2009. He currently features consistently on Channels Television and Television Continental, two of the leading TV stations in Nigeria to discuss national and youth issues. He keeps a vlog at and his books are available on or


  1. Dr. N

    July 3, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Great question. I overcome by living below my means. That is one way to reduce the bills, I tell u. Also, no need to envy others cos they prob wonder how u keep it togethrr

  2. Thatgidigirl

    July 3, 2014 at 9:18 am

    How I survive? I think back to the times i compromised in the past and how it turned around to bite me in the ass ( took a really huge chunk of my butt), the consequences were so bad that I don’t even consider compromising as an option anymore. However, people fail to realise the importance of a spiritual anchor….believe it or not, this life is very spiritual and one must have that foundation to guide you and strengthen you during tough times. When i am faced with situations that test my values, i find out what the bile says about that situation and try to follow it. Furthermore, lack of self confidence and direction in a person’s life would make it easy to deviate from what your values. If you trust where you are going to, trust your abilities and know that whatever situation you find yourself in is just a phase, you would hang in there a little longer and wait for it to pass. There is a certain sense of fulfilment and respect that comes with achieving things the right way, without cutting corners.

  3. Rethots

    July 3, 2014 at 9:23 am

    Surviving the temptation to compromise is one of the biggest challenges anyone can face in these times. However, if one can survive it, then, nothing can break one. On the contrary, if one gives in to the temptation, that ‘seed’ will definitely ripe someday and one will have to bear the ‘harvest’.

    That being said, how does one survive the temptation? While there may not be one clear cut way, many little things done can actually pave the way:

    1. Realising one is not in competition with any other person so, when the need arises, one might have to re-prioritise some things. Thus, doing away with some necessary luxuries.
    2. More importantly, one should have the big picture constantly in one’s views and irrespective, one should consciously continue to work towards it. Even if one does not like it, God (and nature) rewards commitment and faithfulness.
    3. Simply saying ‘NO’ irrespective of the (immediate) consequences.

  4. beatrice

    July 3, 2014 at 10:58 am

    Wow I am facing a similar situation today. Thank you

  5. laila

    July 3, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Temptations are all around. Our value system and beliefs have to be solid.

  6. chidiogo

    July 3, 2014 at 11:33 am

    thanks a lot! i needed to see this!

  7. Abena

    July 3, 2014 at 11:54 am

    It takes only trusting in God (being born again) for one to be able to over come the temptation to compromise.

  8. Que

    July 3, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    I beg to differ a bit, being born again isn’t an auto ticket to overcoming the temptation of compromising your values. However, it helps you recognise likely danger areas, and flee/ avoid them or fall, and realise you don’t have to stay down/redeem yourself.

    On dealing with compromising values and character….you must be firstly self aware, and have developed through time, boundaries guiding your behaviour in different circumstances. That said, new situations can test you like never before, but I believe in conscience, I believe in having people you’re accountable to and for, I believe in a spiritual guide…. having a good internal and external support system is valuable for keeping yourself in check…. If you have to get involved in something you cant share with the people that are of value to you, then that may be a clue right there….. one of d biggest fears of character failure is judgement, especially from pple you respect or vice versa….. and judgement isn’t necessarily bad, cos ultimately we all want validation, so as long as it makes you a better man/woman/worker/employer etc, then use the feedback to do better.

    Another aspect of this is realising that self confidence is crucial…..u build confidence by identifying, capitalising on and winning based on your strengths….we cant be all bad, you most likely have had some success from something before, retrace the steps that got you there n use it… when faced with peer pressure, confidence reminds u that u have something to offer where others might have failed.

    It is clearly to broad a topic to exhaust without an epistle, but lastly i want to just agree with Rethots points 1-3 above.
    Best wishes.

    • jcsgrl

      July 3, 2014 at 2:16 pm

      LOVE LOVE LOVE…I’m just nodding my head like agama lizard

      Meanwhile BN I still have a love-hate relationship with this new website. Though I like the love button. Can we get the redbrick design back? 🙂

  9. Ama

    July 3, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    Que and Abena, u guys are saying d same thing. Que u only went further to explain how being born again can help. You didn’t differ. Truly, d one thing that can help is being born again,it helps u stay disciplined.

    • Que

      July 3, 2014 at 7:31 pm

      Born again is a title, character is in deed. Cheers.

  10. Ninnie

    July 3, 2014 at 3:46 pm

    I really needed that. Thank you!

  11. ada1

    July 4, 2014 at 9:56 am

    (i) overcoming temptation to compromise is by God’s grace but one has to tap into that grace. Bible says flee appearance of evil. once it looks like evil, flee. sometimes, u do not wait to be certain… a friend told me about a guy who asked her to come see him just minutes before a difficult maths exam. she put two and two together to know that he had expo. she then decided not to go because if she’d gone and it was expo, that’ll be harder to resist.
    (ii) another non-spiritual help is contentment. do not ever try to live above your means.
    (iii) plan and save. remove your savings immediately you remove your tithe(first thing) and ensure its not accessible to you anytime you are broke. somehow, somehow, you just may be able to stretch that “shortened” money and still build a little nest egg.
    (iv) once you’ve saved a bit, consult people who are more knowledgeable and invest wisely.

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