Sometimes, interactions with other people are stimulating and enriching my life, while in other situations they are a burden and a reason for many sighs. From time to time, I even find myself in a situation, where I can only loose, irrespective of my decisions and despite my best intentions. I am of course not really writing about a material loss, but rather about loosing energy, time, confidence, or peace of mind.
What is the best strategy to avoid loose-loose situations and to preserve my peace of mind?
Interesting aspects and insight about interactions with friends and strangers are provided by the prisoner's dilemma, which is a particular example of game theory. It is a game for two people who play against each other. Each player has to decide whether she wants to cooperate with or betray her game partner, without knowing the decision of the opponent. If both players cooperate, they earn one point each. If one cooperates, while the second player betrays, the former looses two points, while the latter gains two points. Finally, if both betray each other, they will both loose one point (I made up these numbers - the original example is somewhat more evolved, but this is just to illustrate the essence of the game). If both players behave logically, they will both betray each other and therefore both loose.
The conclusion of my thoughts on the prisoner's dilemma is thus that sometimes it is necessary to retaliate and that not playing is a strategy to avoid situations of repeated retaliation.
I wish you a nice weekend!