Essential Crazy Wisdom

In 2002 I read a book called Essential Crazy Wisdom by Wes Nisker.

In that book Nisker draws from the philosophies and religions of the East and West to discover the madmen, dreamers, and unconventional wisdom seekers who turned wisdom and used it in an intrinsically contrary way.

Their wisdom at times stood completely off the scales of normal human judgement. Dangerous, you might say, but these off the wall thinkers produced some of the most powerful ideas in history…

Just think what a little crazy wisdom then could do for your real estate business.

That’s why today I want to show you how crazy wisdom can be used in negotiation.

Overcome the Stale, Lifeless Routine

First, Nisker talks about the idea that it is impossible sometimes to see the very nature of the shape of box if we are completely inside of it.

In real estate, especially if we have been in the business for a number of years, sometimes our ways of negotiation or mediation or conflict resolution become stale or lifeless. We often hit a point of where we lack creativity to solve problems.

Or, we get completely stuck doing the same thing over and over again that handling the testy seller this way doesn’t get results.

In a situation like this, it’s best to bring in a third person who has a fresh view of the situation. Or, simply allow some time to pass, whether its just one night or one week. Breaking away from the situation allows you to gain a new perspective to it when you return.

Get a Lobotomy

The second notion of crazy wisdom applied to negotiation is that of gaining many perspectives.

Go to a new place. Hang out with different people. If you’ve been a member of your chamber of commerce for 15 years, consider becoming a Rotarian or Shriner. Consider visiting a new church.

Better yet, hang out with people you wouldn’t normally get along with. Whether they have opposing political, social or religious view. Find out how they think. See life how they live it, how they move in it, how they view it.

If you have a buyer who is fussy about details and your not, try to step into his shoes and see where he is coming from. Understand why he is fussy about details. This will allow you to gain a new perspective, an understanding of that person. You are tyring to disrupt your normal pattern of seeing things. You are giving yourself a healthy lobotomy.

And once you see things differently, once you understand that person, you will empathize and find almost magically the negotiations getting back on track.

In the long run, taking yourself out of your comfort zone might sound crazy, but it will make your wisdom wiser, deeper, wider. It will make your negotiations more fulfilling, satisfying and rewarding.

The End Is Not What It Seems

Another way you can apply crazy wisdom to negotiations is the idea that agreements rarely end with a verbal or signed contract. In a lot of ways, there is much more negotiation to do on the other side of the negotiation.

This is the idea of the end actually being the middle. It means that even though the ink has dried on the contract, your work has really just begun. You, my friend, have to keep many of the details of the home selling or buying process moving, post-contract.

That Is Blasphemy

At one point in his book Nisker quotes the British playwright George Bernard Shaw: “All great truths start as blasphemies.”

This is true, isn’t it? Think about negotiations.

Typically, early in talks parties treat each others truths with scepticism and sometimes scorn. But as trust builds these truths are generally accepted and creatively built upon to produce a new, until then unheard of solution.

Or parties don’t build upon these truths and eventually the talks crash and burn.

The lesson here: build trust with people and eventually your truths on both sides will come to life and create something that neither of you could have created on your own.

Finally, crazy wisdom shows up in simple questions.

The Scientist Who Asked Simple Questions

Nisker noted that Albert Einstein was infamous for asking simple, near-childlike questions. But the questions cut through the smog. They got to the heart of the matter. And quickly. Think about children.

They question everything. And as parent at times you find yourself wondering, “Why do we believe that? Why are things that way? They don’t have to be that way, do they?”

Simple questions are not offensive, but in the same sense very potent weapons. So learn how to frame simple questions that get to the heart of the situation, and you can keep negotiations effecient and effective.

Now, get out there and apply some of this crazy wisdom to your business and life. Then get back to me and let me know if I’m off my rocker with this stuff or not.

Here’s to your success!

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