getting-to-yes-coverThis is not a book review. I’m no good at writing those and hell, you don’t want to read one anyway. But a while ago, a colleague recommended to Jenn she read a book called Getting to Yes. This little book quickly became required family reading – a seriously life-changing book.

Getting to Yes starts with something that at some level we all understand: we are all negotiators. But it is interesting to explicitly think about our daily interactions as exercises in negotiation. Whenever we try to “convince” someone, we are negotiating. It’s really as simple as that.

To aid this effort, the book outlines an idea called principled negotiation – a way to focus on measurable values and motivations rather than a person themselves. It is a relatively simple idea with profound consequences. When you allow yourself to focus on what motivates a person to take a certain position (or at a certain way) finding a solution is much easier.

Example: have you ever had a difficult customer you simply thought was an “idiot”. Instead of focussing on the person, focus your efforts on what motivates that person to act like an “idiot”. This strategy is much more likely to solve a problem and avoid further escalation.

Does this relate to the Hypothetical Homestead and lasting happiness? Absolutely! A focus on what motivates you and the people in your life is a solid strategy to build long-term happiness. To us, our goal of financial independence is due to an understanding of our motivations. is an extension of those motivations.


So head to your local library and pick this book up. This is a quick read with some simple ideas that can change the way you approach other people and yourself.