Learning how to negotiate from the heart

The journey through change continues and the lessons keep coming

The biggest gift I’ve received in dealing with this latest unexpected and uninvited change: finding out that acting from my heart opens up the space for me to be just as joyful and positive as I am when things are going the way I’d like.

I’m learning how to negotiate from the heart.

Beautiful lotus can grow in the unclear muck

I’ve learned how to make the act of selling my services sacred in my business — by standing in humility and leading from love. I can apply the same principles now — I can negotiate from the heart — when faced with having to leave the place I’ve lived and worked for over eight years. This week, it was time for me to put a counterproposal together as a response to my landlord’s first offer. Here are some of the things I learned and practiced that allowed me to step away from fear and stress and stand tall in love and faith as I crafted, edited, finalized, and sent the proposal.

  • Do things in the right order: Get all the mentorship and support you crave before you respond in a negotiation — I had two lawyers and my business coach help me draft my counter.
  • Accept what is: Drop the resentment and the fear that if you’re not in control, terrible things will happen. I am no longer fighting the reality that I now must find a new place to live and work.
  • Kwan Yin, compassionTrust the outcome, even if it looks murky: The quicker you can stop telling yourself that the outcome will be bad, the quicker you can start enjoying each moment.
  • Find the blessing, own the blessing, live the blessing: When things are uncomfortably uncertain, staying grounded in self-care and spiritual practices — starting with compassionately blessing myself and this journey with a full heart — is the best way to avoid slipping back into misery and negativity. Look — I don’t know about you (actually, I do know 😎), but I have an all-volunteer squad of screaming monkeys in my head who are available 24/7 to start reminding me of all the bad things I should be fearing. My job is to keep turning toward the Divine, to wrap myself in love and safety, and to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

I sent the counterproposal to my landlord last night by email.

I even set it up like a contract and electronically signed my portion! Way to set a positive intention!

I prayed, I blessed the email, I blessed myself and I let it go.

Trust the unknown

Then (nothing but honesty here, no matter how embarrassing), I found myself expecting to hear my landlord screaming (she lives in screaming distance of my place) “Are you nuts? What makes you think I would agree….? You know how these monkeys do their thing, so skillful!

Every time I caught myself hanging out in this misery — which is really inviting a negative outcome — I would put my hands over my heart, breathe deeply, and step back into trust.

I got a reply from her this morning. She said:

I am a bit distracted today [her niece is in labor with her first child]. I confirm receipt of your offer and will work with you to achieve an acceptable conclusion of our agreement. I need a couple of days to think this out…will be back with you on this early next week. Again, I am happy and proud that we have come this far toward reaching an agreement and am certain we can move forward…just need a little time.

No screaming. No “Are you crazy?” Or “How dare you!”

Here’s what I keep learning:

Share Your Magic coaching program

Not only is negative projection not worth it, I believe from my own personal experience that the more positive and loving you are, the more you can rock any kind of change. Flip side? — the more you hang out in negativity, the darker will be your experience all the way through your journey.

Look — I still don’t know what will happen. I don’t know if more negotiation is going to have to happen. What happens next doesn’t matter, because I know what to do in any circumstance. Woot!

Are you going through changes in your own business?

You don’t have to do it alone. You can get support.

Are you finding it hard to figure out what to do, and in what order? I get it. I so get it!

First, stop, get grounded, and connect with your heart and with the Divine, however that manifests for you. Then have a look at my coaching program. Drop me a line (sue@magnoliaswest.com), and we’ll get on the phone, and see if I can help. I am here to support you.

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I’m a barely tamed hippie, sage, seasoned, sarcastic (not all the time any more, but still). I’m a mom, a daughter, sister, a neighbor, and a friend. I’ve been on this meandering journey — like you, probably — seeking a better connection to and experience of peace, harmony, and fun in every bit of life. I’m single, quite good at it, and mostly love it. I’m here for the conversations I get to have with you, which these days center on exploring the mystery and beauty of life, work, health, aging, and creative expression. Want to know a little more about me and my journey? Explore the site. Read the blog. Connect with me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.

Join the conversation!

  1. Way to walk the talk! I’ve been away & apparently “missed a chapter” — didn’t know you were facing such an upheaval but it looks like it’s already yielding rewards. Thanks.

    • Andrea, yup, this change is informing all of my posts these days. So many lessons in this!

      Thanks for the encouraging comment. I am grateful.

      Love and light,

  2. What a great example of living through change with dignity and grace, and when we can keep our spiritual feet on the ground, we support the Universe in delivering a positive outcome. Nicely done!

    • Kailean, welcome here; I’m so glad we’ve connected.

      I love the way you put this, and I completely agree. My job is to stay spiritually grounded, and by doing so I’m extending a loving invitation to the universe to bring me my awesome next home and office!

      Blessed be,

  3. Ooh fantastic! It can be scary being upfront and doing biz negotiations like this. I’m not sure I’m brave enough just yet, but I love how you did it with love and intention. I think this is def the way to go <3 🙂

    • Anna, thanks, and welcome!

      Brave is part of it, yes, but for me it’s even more that it’s just too freaking painful to do anything but ground in love and positive intention. Pain is a great motivator, yo.

      Love and blessings,

  4. Just wonderful and well done. Isn’t it strange how we can come from the heart and be asking for justice, yet still feel as if we are pushing the bit. Lovely sharing, thank you.

    • Juhl, welcome here. I’m grateful we’ve connected. Thanks for the insightful comment. I’m a work in progress, and I am glad to be progressing in a more positive direction. Better for me, better for those I support and serve.


  5. Congratulations! I love how you handled this situation. I love the way you show up to the world in all ways Sue. You are such a gift.

    Thank you for modeling this and making it so clear to apply in so many situations!



    • Stacey, thanks!

      That truth is so big — the “what” of the challenge doesn’t matter; all that matters is how you show up for it. Accept — even embrace — the mystery and have more lightness as you go. Reject and resist and feel more struggle with each step. You might end up at the same place. Or not. It doesn’t matter. It’s the journey that matters. All comes down to how do I show up today?


  6. You are such an incredible role model for so many women. Thank you. I always find nuggets of valuable wisdom in all of your posts. Big LOVE!

    • Wow, Shann, that’s lovely to receive. So grateful for you and the stand you take in the world as well!


  7. Sue I love this 🙂 My favourite point is Trust the outcome, even if it looks murky which is a good reminder to me right now. Good luck with your proposal outcome.

    • Rebecca, thank you so much, and welcome here!

      It’s amazing how much less stress I’m feeling even though I’m still deep in the mystery. Woot!

      Love and light,

  8. Beautiful post, Sue.

    I love the idea of finding–and owning–the blessing in all things and all situations. I have a meditation I use with clients sometimes titled “Where can I find the blessing in this?” Such a simple–but powerful–idea to rest into.

    Also really like your guidance to “do things in the right order.” For some reason, this line calmed me…helped counter overwhelm. Sort of akin to “what’s my next doable action” (another one I use with clients as well as myself).

    Thanks again for sharing your process!

    • Dana, yes, the next right action. So important to chunk it down to remove overwhelm.

      And isn’t it funny how much easier it is to deliver these reminders to our clients than to ourselves? Hahaha. Good thing we have those clients to help us remember.


  9. Good for you Sue! Sounds like you’re on the right track and your landlord’s response sounds very promising. I appreciate what you must have been feeling while waiting for a reply – it’s amazing what we put ourselves through sometimes! Wishing you on the best as you continue through this transition.

    • Marquita, exactly. I am so much more practiced and skillful in projecting negative outcomes. All this positive stuff is new to me. I can see progress though — I don’t hang out in agony of my own making so much or for so long any more. Yay!


  10. Love this post. Especially the part about trusting the process even when things seem murky. So often we try to hold on to what we are doing even when signs indicate we must make adjustments. Murky waters often force us to revisit what we thought we should do in order to open ourselves up to something better.

    • Kathleen, Yes, beautifully put. Thank you. Acceptance and surrender are allowing me to adjust with more ease as I go. What a great set of lessons; I’m glad this resonates for you.


  11. I have so many takeaways from this post. Thank you for letting this experience inform your writing. I have a few situations that will surely go better if I am negotiating from my heart.

    • DivaCarla, welcome here! Thanks for your loving comment; may all your negotiations be easeful and very very blessed.

      Love and light,

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