07/11/2014 05:49 pm ET | Updated Sep 10, 2014

How to Think Win-Win (and Win) During Your Divorce

Your divorce isn't a competition to see who can get more, move on to a new romance faster or get the most love from the kids.

As Stephen Covey points out in his epic bestseller, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, "Think Win-Win isn't about being nice, nor is it a quick-fix technique. It is a character-based code for human interaction and collaboration."

Your divorce is an opportunity to graciously, and for the good of all concerned, end a relationship and life together that did not work in order to begin a new and happier life.

Playing win-win isn't necessarily fun or easy, but it is good for you (win), good for your ex (win) and good for your children (bonus win). Win-win-win.

In case you're all in for the win-win-win, but you're not quite sure what to do, here are your guidelines:

• Act with integrity. Tell the truth. Be forthcoming. Be fair. Keep your negative opinions and observations to yourself. Said another way, don't say or do something you wouldn't want written about on the cover of The New York Times.

• Keep your side of the street clean. It doesn't matter what your ex does to try to spin you up or get your goat or piss you off or frustrate you or make you sad, don't have any of it. Ignore bad behavior, reward good behavior. Said another way, don't do anything you're going to have to apologize for later, or something you would regret admitting you had done.

• Do the right thing because it's the right thing to do. Enough said.

Honorée Corder is the author of If Divorce is a Game, These are the Rules.

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