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Negotiation Tactics 101

I believe it was Benjamin Franklin who once said, the only guarantees in life are death and taxes. That has certainly been true in my experience. Everything else has to be earned through hard work and a solid amount of luck.

However, hard work is not always equal. For example, a person may spend a lot of time and energy to push a mower around a lawn to cut grass. That can be a lot of hard work.

But that person could have used a riding lawn mower. Those machines take work and attention, too, but require much less concerted physical effort. This is just one example of how work can be inefficiently applied.

To properly work hard and to leave yourself open to good fortune, you need to know how to negotiate. Someone may achieve way more success if they can bargain their way to it, even if they work with less effort toward the same goal.

The first tactic to remember in negotiation is to try and appear in-line with the goals of the person with whom you are negotiating. For example, if a person wants to make as much money as possible, frame yourself as not impeding their profit. Instead, you need something from them as you strive toward an unrelated motive.

Keeping this in mind with decrease the severity or intensity of a conflict. The worst thing, both strategically and ethically, is to stand in the way of a person attempting to achieve something — especially if what they are working toward is a good thing, like helping others!

Another negotiating principle to keep in mind is to contextualize your resources and abilities as compared to the person sitting across the table. As explained on the website for the Kentucky personal injury law firm, Hare, Wynn, Newell & Newton, LLP, sometimes legal negotiations include discussing options with powerful actors like insurance companies.

If you are a single individual arguing against a powerful interest or entity like an insurance company, then it is best that you remember you are only one person. In regards to money, staffing, or time, it is likely that you can only do so much. Time management, prioritization, and relying on your loved ones is important — especially when negotiating. But you can only go so far or do so much.

And the final negotiation tactic is to know when to say no — or walk away from the table entirely. One of the best examples of unfair and bad-faith behavior is when people make offers for a product or service that are so humorously low, you almost want to laugh.

There is a good chance that whatever you are negotiating, be it a pay raise or the delivery of a service, is available somewhere else. Always remember the value you hold and the principles you are pursuing. In doing so, you will know when the right time is to walk away from someone who is not acting in good-faith. Or, if a person is offering something insultingly, always feel comfortable in your decision to say no.

These are just a few methods to be aware of, to become a better negotiator and more successful. Even with these tools in mind, perfection is not guaranteed. However, you have a better shot than without them!

Lawn Tips: Take Care of Your Drainage

When you think about ways to improve the quality of your lawn, your mind probably runs to a few common options: adding new, higher quality sod, reseeding, getting more direct sunlight, using better fertilizers, and other such things. Those are all good ideas in many situations, but one issue that I often see ignored in these lists is improving drainage. I’ve seen many people puzzling over why their lawn just isn’t looking great no matter what they do. They’ve put down new sod. They’ve trimmed back some trees to get more light. They’ve bought the best fertilizer on the market. They water their lawn regularly. They keep it trimmed to a good length. Yet, still, it’s patchy with large areas that never quite flourish. What’s up with that, they ask me. What am I doing wrong?

You probably aren’t doing anything wrong. The problem isn’t in what you’re doing for your lawn. It’s very likely the issue is simply too much of a good thing. In many cases, your lawn is simply getting too much water.

Take a look at your lawn after a big storm. Does it look more like a pond than a yard? It’s likely your issues aren’t with fertilizer, it’s with drainage. There are a lot of drainage issues that your yard might have. Ware Landscaping points out a few of the biggest concerns:

  • Your yard was improperly graded
  • Your yard doesn’t have outlets where the water can flow
  • Your yard is uneven, leaving water pooled in certain places
  • Your sprinkler system is pouring too much water in certain parts of the yard
  • Plant debris is holding the water in certain parts of your yard
  • The soil is too compact and can’t absorb the water
  • Your gutters aren’t functioning properly

There can also be issues with there being too much rain over a short period that has overwhelmed the drainage system and the yard. In all of these situations, your yard isn’t going to improve just by cutting it regularly. You will need to make changes where it matters: to your drainage system.

If the issues are obvious, you can probably handle this yourself. In the case of plant debris, it may simply be a matter of picking up branches and other debris that has been reducing the ability of the rain to move where it needs to. However, with more serious issues, like the grading of your lawn, you may well need to work with professional landscapers to make sure the right grading is measured for your yard and then implemented.

So, if you are having drainage issues, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that your yard can be saved and you haven’t been hurting it by laying new sod and putting down new fertilizer. The bad news is that you may have a significant amount of work ahead of you to get your lawn to that healthy, attractive point you’ve been working towards.

The difficulties of the trucking industry

Trucking has for decades been one of the iconically American jobs. If the idea of a trucker comes to mind anywhere in the world, odds are people think of a biggish American man behind the wheel. How many other careers can that be said for?

Perhaps baseball players and the almost extinct cowboys, but there are few others.

The career, though, for all its semi-romantic Americana nature, is not the easiest in the world. There are many difficulties that come with taking to the long-haul road.

It can be dangerous, for instance. Tuckers are involved in a lot of accidents every year, which is, of course, to be expected, since they spend so many hours on the road. But the number of accidents is certainly increased by difficult deadlines that can require truckers to drive very long hours without enough sleep. Beyond this obvious danger, there is the less obvious potential for assault or robbery. Anyone who has passed by rest stops late at night knows they don’t always appear to be the safest or most pleasant places. While they have improved over the years, there is still some danger and discomfort to be expected there.

Another issue is the wages. While truckers make, on average, slightly more than the national average for a single earner, the strenuous nature of the job may mean that isn’t really enough. Truckers are away for days and weeks at a time, meaning families often can only have one earner, or else require extensive child care, which is, of course, quite expensive.

These strains have led to an entire business model that advances truckers their fees from recently delivered freight. This is called factoring, and the business appears to be thriving.

A final concern for truckers is the long-term viability of their work. While the truck and the trucker have long been mainstays on American roads, that era may soon be coming to a close. In fact, it may be sooner than many anticipate, and sooner than much many will be able to prepare for. Already, numerous companies are test-driving driverless cars, and many experts believe, at the current rate of advancement, that truckers may be left unemployed by automation within a decade. Even if that timeframe is optimistic, there is little doubt that the trajectory of the trucking industry is heading towards increasing automation, and so, lower wages and fewer jobs.

While Americans every day benefit from the work truckers do, the job, for all its necessity, does not in many respects show the level of that benefit. With unavoidable dangers, lowish wages, and a lack of long-term job prospects, trucking is not the most attractive business.

On some level, it may be worthwhile to demand more respect and better working conditions for those in the trucking industry, but it may also be argued such efforts are pointless since the job itself will soon be a relic of the past, just like the all American cowboy.

Common Sleeping Disorders

Sleeping is one of the few relaxing moments of adult life. This opportunity should be maximized to reinvigorate not just your brain, but your entire body. But there are people who are not able to maximize this opportunity because of sleeping disorders, putting them at risk of physical, emotional, and psychological problems.

Insomnia

When you think about sleeping problems, insomnia is probably the first thing that comes to your mind. This is understandable, because insomnia is one of the most common sleeping disorders in existence. Contrary to popular belief, Insomnia is not just about difficulty in sleeping.

It is also about the quality of your sleep. For example, if you wake up often in your sleeping hours or if you always feel like your sleep is not satisfying, you may have insomnia. This can have various effects on your body, such as fatigue, increased irritability, and poor cognitive skills.

Sleep Apnea

You are sure you heard that term before, but you don’t really know what it is. Sleep apnea occurs when a person pauses in breathing during sleep, mainly because of respiratory issues, such as blockage in the respiratory path.

This may result into snoring and choking sounds, and on worse instances, your brain may even be forced to wake you to address your breathing problem. According to the website of Silent Night Therapy, sleep apnea may lead to certain medical conditions, such as heart disease, hypertension, and even stroke.

Narcolepsy

Unlike insomnia and sleep apnea, narcolepsy is something you may not have heard of before. It is a condition where the brain has difficulty going through its sleep and wake cycle, so those who have this condition may experience sudden sleeping episodes in school, at the office, or even during intense activities such as driving and playing sports.

What makes narcolepsy more dangerous is the fact that it is often undiagnosed. Those with narcolepsy may experience extreme sleepiness despite having adequate sleep the prior night, difficulty in concentrating, and feelings of exhaustion.

The Importance of Social Security Disability Insurance

Those who have been suddenly disabled because of an injury or complication have challenging lives. First, there are hospital bills and treatment costs to pay. Second, they may have limited capability to work and earn money. Third, their limited earning capacity may prevent them from getting their medical needs. And fourth, the disability may reduce their general enjoyment of life.

It is a good thing that there is a program such as SSDI. It stands for Social Security Disability Insurance, and its goal is to provide assistance to social security members who have been disabled and may have financial hardships.
It is important to note that not everybody can claim the benefits of SSDI. They should be eligible for it first, and typically, the eligibility is determined by certain factors, such as the following:

  • The person must be paying social security for a specific number of years
  • The injury or complication has really resulted into a disability

Disability benefits can be classified as short-term and long-term. Short-term benefits are for those whose disabilities are temporary, while long-term benefits are for those whose disabilities are long-lasting or permanent.

These benefits may be calculated differently, but they have one thing in common – the legal process involving them may be complicated, but there are legal representatives that can help you for that.

The important thing is that these benefits serve as a financial cushion for those whose earning capacity has been compromised because of a disability. In one perspective, it is a way for the Social Security Administration to give you compensation after years of contribution, and that is why only those who have contributed for a number of years are eligible for this insurance program. Social security can also be invested into diverse portfolio’s through a broker.

Sustaining an injury or complication that is enough to disable you is already stressful enough, but it becomes more stressful because of the financial burdens it brings, so it is good news that SSDI exists.

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