Skip to main content

Key Difference – Adjust vs Compromise

Both adjust and compromise involves making changes in our plans and lifestyles to accommodate the wishes and needs of others. It is important to know the difference between adjust and compromise in order to understand how we should make these changes. Adjustments are often temporary and involve small changes whereas compromises major changes in life and may have a long-term impact. This is the key difference between adjust and compromise. All in all, adjusting is a necessary part of life and is imperative to live and work peacefully and harmoniously with others whereas compromises may ultimately make you unhappy.

What Does Adjust Mean?

Adjust or adjusting means altering something to suit something else. The American Heritage dictionary defines adjust as “To change so as to be suitable to or conform with something else”.  When we change our plans to accommodate others, it can be called adjusting. Adjustments are often done willingly to accommodate others needs and desires. Adjustments also tend to be temporary.

Some Examples of Adjusting in day to day life

Dressing appropriately for a formal function even if you don’t like formal clothes.

Preparing meat instead of fish if your guests don’t eat fish.

Taking the views of the other members of the family into view when decorating the house

Take your children to the zoo on Sunday even if you want to stay home

Adjustments are necessary if you want to live and work harmoniously with others. They are a necessary part of life.

Difference Between Adjust and Compromise

Preparing vegetarian food because your guests are vegan, even if you love non-veg food

What Does Compromise Mean?

Compromise is making changes in order to avoid a dispute. Compromise may not be done willingly; it may be the only option to avoid a conflict. Compromising is much more severe and involves more serious decisions and changes than adjustments. It can also have serious consequences. Constantly making compromises to make other people happy may ultimately make us unhappy and the constant compromising may also make us lose our true personality, attributes and qualities.

Some Examples of Compromising

Giving up your job because your husband doesn’t want to you to work

Changing your style of dressing according to someone’s preference

Going against your principles and personal ethics because your boss demands it.

Key Difference -  Adjust vs  Compromise

Giving up your job even if you don’t want to be a housewife.

What is the difference between Adjust and Compromise?


Adjust means to change something to accommodate someone.

Compromise means to accept  a somewhat lower standard in order to avoid a conflict.


Adjust has positive connotations.

Compromise often has negative connotations.


Adjust often involves less serious and smaller changes than compromise.

Compromise often involves serious changes in the lifestyle.


Adjust often refers to temporary actions.

Compromise often involves long-term or permanent actions.

 Image Courtesy: Pixabay