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15 Things Only People Whose Partners Are Good At Maths Would Understand

15 Things Only People Whose Partners Are Good At Maths Would Understand

My partner has an MA in applied Mathematics,a few years of coding experience and is now getting his joint PhD in Optics and Math. Me – a Philosophy major, with a passion for languages and quirky literature expressions, along with rather basic understanding of what complex figures are and why do we even need differential equations. We make a perfect team together.

One of the things I’ve learned in our relationship is that the world of numbers is pretty fascinating, yet rather complex for everyone to understand. People who are great in Maths view the world from a different perspective. Here are 15 small things that you can relate to if you’ve dated someone with profound knowledge in Maths.

1. You learn a lot of new peculiar notions

HAG12_fig2a

    Now I know how nonlinear dynamical systems function (in simple words); what chimera state is and how pure mathematics stands out from the rest. A simple question like “What are you working on right now?” can turn into an hour lecture about the subject. Surprisingly, I don’t get bored and in small steps try to realize the complexity behind a theory consisting of just one equation.

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    2. Your sense of humor evolves

    As you learn new complex terms, you can now appreciate and laugh on very specific types of jokes – the maths ones. Eventually, you can even shoot back witty math puns of your own. Here’s one of my recent favorites:

    “Two random variables were talking in a bar. They thought they were being discrete but I heard their chatter continuously”

    Yep, not everyone will get it.

    3. You don’t need to worry about analyzing the cost of anything

    Your partner will take care of this – and even run a whole statistical analysis, including various data variables, multiple options and side factors and deliver you a fine report with pure actionable data at hand. Recently, we were planning to move to another city and I spent the whole afternoon researching various moving companies offering different price systems. I thought I’ll go nuts untill I found the best option when my partner came to rescue and ran a fast comparison in less than 30 minutes defining the best value for money deal.

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    4. They are devoted to mathematics

    They are passionate about their science and their aspirations are truly admiring, but expect them to spend Saturday evening doing Maths instead of going social with your friends. Also, my partner loves getting up at 6 am, because he’s got an idea and just needs to test it. Luckily, he keeps things quiet. If they are in the zone, don’t expect them to react at any of your comments, requests and even urges.

    5. They believe they are smart

    They truly are, of course. But sometimes their firm belief that they are smarter than any other person expands into other areas except maths. Say biology, literature, social media trends, relationships and basically anything else even though they may not have much clue of what they are talking about.

    6. They are your personal business consultant

    Whereas I’m planning to re-work my freelance price grid, calculate the ROI of a new marketing campaign or finish filing my tax return, I have a powerful ally to consult with and get an expert opinion on the numbers. I can focus on what I’m good at while staying sure I’m doing ok in terms of income and taxes. Plus, a penny saved on professional accounting services.

    7. They value function over form

    Don’t expect them to dress fancy and follow fashion trends. They will always choose comfy functional clothes and in general pay few attention to what exactly they are wearing. I don’t mean socks of different colors, but I typically point out to my partner that he should look fancier today because we have been invited to that type of party.

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    8. They often don’t notice things around them

    Like a new piece of decor, new couch, your new hairstyle or other small (or not that small) changes of the environment around them. A story from a fellow couple – she sold his old car that was parked in the yard and he noticed that only six month later after a comment from the neighbour. Sometimes mathematicians stay absolutely indifferent to trivial stuff outside their numbers world.

    9. Their magazine subscriptions are pricey

    They need to read top scientific magazines to keep an eye on the new theories and competitors working in the same field. The math world can also be cruel in terms of competition. But the subscription price tag  leaves me pre-occupied each time it’s time to pay the bills. Physical Review Letters – $795.00 per year for paper copies; Nature – $199.00 per year and don’t get me started on others. The good news – I no longer feel guilty for blowing away $108 per year for Netflix.

    10. They are probably introverts

    This doesn’t mean they love living like hermits, but don’t expect them to hang out with your friends every other Friday or go wild on parties. They value their privacy and enjoy being in their secure social bubble. Expect to have more romantic nights in together or get togethers in small company. You should remember these things if you’re in love with an introvert.

    11. You will embarrass yourself once in awhile

    Because you didn’t know that SOHCAHTOA stands for sin = opposite/hypotenuse, cos = adj/hypotenuse, tan = opposite/adj and is not some sort of African greeting. Or because you couldn’t remember immediately the Pythagorean theorem at 1 am in the morning when you were going to bed. You’ll get that surprised look, but they will not love you less because of that. Nevertheless, you should be prepared for such awkward stuff.

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    12. They are open and direct

    They will say exactly what they think. Sometimes it’s cool as you know they won’t play any stupid mind games with you. On the other hand, this straightforwardness can get a bit offensive and can even be considered rude by other people. Including you.

    13. You have paper lying around everywhere

    Their desk is covered with papers, stickers and notes left on various clutters. So does the kitchen table, sofa, bathroom and a lot of other places around the house where they’ve settled to work today. And don’t you even think of throwing away or mixing anything! You can destroy a new revolutionary theory proof by accident!

    14. They need your care

    While getting obsessed with the latest things they’ve been working on, math people can totally forget about buying food, washing the dishes, taking the dog out or doing the laundry. It’s not like they are unreliable or lazy, they just don’t want to waste their precious time on such small things. If you live together, you’ll have to take care of them most of the times, not the opposite.

    15. You will always admire them

    Despite their quirks and odd habits, you will always admire the way how their brains function and how easily they can crack seemingly difficult questions. Even though you may not completely understand what exactly are they working on, you do know they are up-to something remarkable. Who knows, maybe your kids will study a theorem with their name on it someday.

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    Elena Prokopets

    Elena is a passionate blogger who shares about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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    Published on September 23, 2020

    6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

    6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

    I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

    If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

    What is Negotiation?

    First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

    Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

    In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

    Places We Negotiate

    I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

    1. Work/Business

    This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

    When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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    In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

    Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

    2. Personal

    I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

    I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

    Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

    3. Ourselves

    You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

    I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

    Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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    Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

    Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

    We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

    My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

    If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

    As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

    6 Negotiation Skills to Master

    Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

    Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

    1. Preparation

    Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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    It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

    For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

    After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

    2. Clear Communication

    The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

    If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

    3. Active Listening

    Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

    If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

    4. Teamwork and Collaboration

    To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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    If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

    When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

    5. Problem Solving

    Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

    Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

    From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

    There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

    6. Decision-Making Ability

    Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

    Conclusion

    There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

    Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

    More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

    Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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