The Benefits of Meditation for Negotiation Techniques

The Benefits of Meditation for Negotiation Techniques

15 de July, 2018

Everyone knows nowadays how a constant practice of meditation brings many benefits to our lives: from reducing stress and improving our circulation and immune system, to improving our self-knowledge, self-acceptance and in general bringing a general feeling of happiness.

In these ways, meditation allows us to do better in various areas of our daily life, such as relationships, health and even work. Although it is not immediate to see the nexus between meditation and career, it is possible to show a correlation between the benefits of meditation mentioned above and the areas of work where we most need improvement.

Today the focus will be on how meditation can improve your negotiating skills and your techniques – such as effective verbal and nonverbal communication, stress management, correct listening, and assertiveness. I myself have undergone an evolution in these characteristics since I began to meditate daily, a couple of years ago. Important to remember that negotiation does not apply solely to business situations, but it applies to most of our everyday situations: we negotiate every day with our partners, family and children, and even colleagues at work!

The main benefits of meditation for success in negotiation are:

  • Meditation decreases the frequency of heartbeats, which reduces anxiety and passes a sense of calm and inner peace. Through testing the Zen App’s HealthKit functionality, I was able to measure that on average a 10-minute meditation can lower heart rates by 3-5% – which is a sufficient improvement to reduce the sense of fear and anxiety (which can “paralyze “your mind and reduce your ability to think strategically) and favor a calmer appearance (which conveys dominance and self-confidence). Of course it is not always possible to spend 10 minutes meditating before any conflict or negotiation situation, but we can consider the effect of a couple of minutes of conscious breathing or power posing as sufficient to achieve similar results.
  • Meditation helps to minimize the importance of the object of the negotiation by encouraging detachment. How is it possible that this improves the results of a negotiation? It seems a paradox but it is not. In an earlier article, I explained how being emotionally attached to the outcome of the negotiation is paradoxically the worst way to approach such situations. It minimizes the chances of success by producing a fear of loss and an anxiety that can have negative effects on your mind, as I explained above. Meditation teaches you to detach from things and situations through full consciousness, and the same has to be done with the object of the negotiation.
  • Meditation increases your ability to focus, and consequently your ability to listen fully. Most of the time we “hear” already thinking about what we are going to answer, or with a preformed opinion about the subject of the discussion. This is not real listening. Although thinking about what others are talking about may seem good to be able to counteract more quickly, the truth is that the effect is negative: it takes away the possibility of fully realizing the essence of others’ argument – which does not allow us to identify the weak points of the argument, as well as the non-negotiable points of truth. I go deeper into this correlation between full awareness and ability to listen in another article.

It is quite clear now that a state of full consciousness, and consequently meditation – probably the best exercise that can be done to achieve this state – greatly improves your negotiation skills, and as a result maximizes success rates. It is important to emphasize that meditation can bring benefits to practically all areas of life (some of which we will explore in the next articles).

The goal of meditating regularly is to attain the ability to achieve over time a state of full awareness, or flow, of strong presence in the “here and now” that is fundamental to the development of an “autotelic” personality (a personality that brings satisfaction of the simple act of doing anything, and not of the object of the act), which loses positive effects in all areas of your life.



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