Negotiations are present everywhere in life. You'll negotiate little things, like who takes the trash out, and big things, like how much money you'll be making at a new company. Getting the most out of life depends, at least partially, on your ability to negotiate.

There are tons of articles already in circulation about how to be a better negotiator, but there's a common fault point I've found with most of them. They all contain information on what you should do leading up to the negotiation, such as doing background research, and best practices on what you should do in the middle of a negotiation, such as maintaining good posture and starting higher than your actual goal. These are phenomenal pieces of advice, but they can only help you in the context of one negotiation. How can you make yourself a better negotiator in general?

Like anything else, the solution is with practice, and you need practical exercises if you want to condition yourself to be a better negotiator, in any area of life. These five exercises are ones I've found to be extraordinarily rewarding in this regard:

Practice saying no.
Learn body language cues.
Listen to other people.
Conduct better research.
Negotiate everything.

These five exercises, if repeated regularly and with a commitment to self-improvement, will help you become a better negotiator in all areas of your life. This isn't free reign to negotiate everything, nor should it develop a compulsion in you to strive for more than you deserve. Instead, use your new skills responsibly and remember that negotiation is a two-way street.

Published on: Jul 29, 2016