"The process of successfully growing into the world requires negotiation between hard work and new pathways"

are 'hard work' and 'pathways' implied to be mutually exclusive by this statement

  • If they were mutually exclusive there could be no compromise.
    – Robusto
    Aug 27, 2015 at 15:11
  • @Robusto I changed the word check again Aug 27, 2015 at 15:14
  • If a Yes or No is being sought, I would say Yes. The way this sentence is put together suggests that hard work is at one end of an axis and new pathways is at the other, so you have to do some trial and error to find the right in-between point. // I have to say, the sentence doesn't make much sense to me, especially "growing into the world". It would be very helpful if you could provide the context for the question. Perhaps you are taking a practice test where you are supposed to analyze some provided sentences? Aug 29, 2015 at 21:22

1 Answer 1


The sentence implies that some degree of antithetical tension obtains between the two, so as to make compromise necessary; but as Robusto notes, their being mutually exclusive would make such compromise impossible.

OP’s substitution of the term negotiation for compromise does not make a huge difference here.

Let us posit tropical vacations as opportunity for enjoyment, and forgoing them so as to save money for retirement as sacrifice. A wise person might compromise or negotiate between the two, by taking one such tropical vacation per year instead of three or none. That way, one hopes, retirement can be adequately provided for, but pleasure enjoyed also. (This may be wisdom in that one may not live to retire, and should taste of pleasure while alive; but yet penury in age is a great and preventable evil.) This compromise would combine some of either element, proving them not “mutually exclusive.”

  • thank you, but if the statement was between sacrifice for oppt. would that then imply mutually exclusive? Aug 27, 2015 at 15:32
  • Between "sacrifice for opportunity" and what else? Aug 27, 2015 at 15:35
  • that's it i.e. replace the 'and' with the 'for Aug 27, 2015 at 15:35
  • ‘Gladstone spent his declining years trying to guess the answer to the Irish question; unfortunately, whenever he was getting warm, the Irish secretly changed the question.’ --from Sellar and Yeatman's 1066 and All That. Aug 27, 2015 at 15:37
  • Substituting for for and is not a valid move; between requires for object a coordinate pair of alternatives. Aug 27, 2015 at 15:44

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