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Dictionary.com defines “negotiate” as “to deal or bargain with another or others, as in the preparation of a treaty or contract or in preliminaries to a business deal.”

More and more these days I find Olivia trying to negotiate her way into or out of something with me. Whether it is staying up later at night, going to play with the neighbor girl, or fixing the lunch of her choice, Miss Olivia is an amazing negotiator. Of course, she has had an excellent good example in her big sister.

Just recently she has started prefacing her terms with numbers, as in “Number 1 — I’ll make my lunch, Number 2 — we will go outside, and Number 3 — then we will eat.” And if negotiations fall through because I am being difficult, I will hear “Grammy, you just don’t understand,” or her new favorite, “You just don’t get me”.

A book entitled “Getting To Yes” was published a few years back, and it delineates the fine art of building consensus, that ephemeral state of being pleased with what the other party is doing, feeling you were only giving in on points that were not as important to you.

With whom do you negotiate these days?

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