138524804-oranges-gettyimagesWhat can an orange possibly help us with in our collaborative divorce or any divorce process for that matter? You may have heard about interest based negotiations vs. position based negotiations. When I am working as a financial neutral or mediator with divorcing couples, I use an orange to demonstrate these two different approaches. I place an orange on the table and then say to the couple; here we have one orange for the two of you. How are you going to decide who gets the orange? Most people will say cut it in half. While this certainly works, it may not be the best approach. Here is why. I then tell them each why they want the orange. One wants it to eat because they are hungry. The other wants the orange peel for baking. Now if we were to cut it in half as most people will say they both only get half of what they need. It is only when they state why the orange is important to them that an agreement can be reached. When negotiating divorce issues think of the orange and remember to talk about your interests instead of locking into a position. The quicker you get to the interests you will be that much closer to an agreement. Not only is emotion and conflict minimized you also get more of what you need/want.  Think orange.

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