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5 Tips For Negotiating With Your Ex

Negotiating with your ex partner, no matter how hard you try, is unlikely to be a pleasant experience. The conversation may become heated, bringing up years of history filled with resentment and unsaid feelings. However, you and your ex must be able to set aside old grudges and come to agreements, especially if you share children.

The unfortunate reality for many divorcing couples is that conflict is inevitable during the divorce journey. How you handle the conflict will be a true indicator of how difficult this journey will have to be.

Here Are 5 Tips For Negotiating With Your Ex:

1.Have Empathy

In a negotiation with your ex, as with any negotiation, understanding the other party’s position is a crucial first step to come to an agreement. Having empathy for your ex and what they are going through can make a huge difference in the negotiation process. It will not be easy, especially if your ex is hurt, bitter, or angry and takes it out on you.

Putting yourself in your ex’s shoes is part of having a successful divorce where both of you are satisfied. You are more likely to be kind to someone you empathize with, and if you have children, you are setting an example for them as well.

2.Practice Emotional State Management

Divorce has the potential to bring up a lot of negative emotions to the surface, which may lead you to regrettable actions with consequences down the line. In order to curb these negative emotions, remember to practice self-care. Self-care includes getting enough sleep, eating balanced, nourishing meals, and positive self-talk. Doing these things can equip you with a more positive attitude going into the negotiation.

It is also important to remember that only you can control how you feel. On the same note, realize that you cannot control what your ex does or says, but you have a choice in how you respond. This means staying outside of verbal attacks and only focusing on the facts of the negotiation. Your ex has known you for a long time, so they know how to get under your skin. Be aware of your own trigger points, as your ex is likely to use them against you. If you do not allow these triggers to personally affect you, they will not impact the negotiation.

3.Think Long Term

The key to negotiating with your ex is thinking long term. In other words, consider how every move you make during this process will affect the outcome of your divorce. Be a stealth jet, not a fighter jet.

Think about how a fighter jet behaves. It wreaks havoc and leaves war zones completely destroyed. When it comes to divorce, battling with your ex is going to be a waste of your precious time. Being a fighter jet not only damages your emotional health, but it is energy wasted on meaningless battles. A stealth jet, on the other hand, is silent in its approach. Instead of being reactive, think through your moves with strategy. Understand where your ex is coming from and be willing to bite your tongue for the sake of maintaining peace.

In a negotiation, it is not about who can yell the loudest or be the most cruel. It is about making thoughtful decisions that benefit both parties in the long term.

4.Value Your Position

What is the reason you are negotiating with your ex in the first place? The answer should be because you truly believe your position will provide the best outcome for your divorce. This does not mean make over the top demands of your ex. Make sure all aspects of your position are both logical and reasonable. Your ex will not be willing to come to an agreement unless they get something out of it.

Remember that a successful divorce means that both parties are satisfied. In order to create this win-win outcome, your position has to have benefits for both parties.

5.Be Confident

Confidence is about how you carry yourself. It is not something easily described, as much as it is a silent energy around you. In negotiating with your ex, being confident means that you will stand up for yourself and what you believe in. Start with the way you negotiate. Find ways to show your ex how you want to be treated. By placing value on your needs, interests, and self, your ex will have no choice but to do the same.

It is also important to firmly stand your ground. If your ex is known to be difficult, try not to waver in your position, as they will likely take advantage of any signs of weakness. Essentially, you will need to put on a poker face. Make sure you look confident, and soon enough you will feel it as well.


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