Living with a pedantic stuff doer and using it to get your own way.

By Wendy the Other Half

Part of series on Techniques for Motivating Other People the way you want, without manipulating others or being devious…. Honest.  For more motivation tips and tricks see the “Stuff from the Other Half” category

You’ll have seen from the DIY LOFT CONVERSION blog  that we had a slight sense of urgency due to not enough bedrooms ( or it could be that we had enough bedrooms and too many kids!). Now Stuff Doer was under pressure to get the loft conversion done (from the kids, he never knows when I’m turning the screw). Now he did decide that, as you can’t see the newel post from the main body of the house, that plain and simple would do and be the quickest option. Now, I haven’t waited for years for the loft conversion just to let something not be 100% how I want it for the sake of saving Stuff Doer a few hours work and some thinking time.


So, what to do? We all know our Stuff Doer is a bit pedantic, that’s why stuff takes so long to get done. But things getting done just how you want them (ie. The Right Way) is supposed to be our reward for all our tolerance and patience so we must appeal to this tendency of theirs and use it to our advantage.


In this particular situation I pointed out that, eventually, the loft conversion will become his study. I’ll get the extra living room back, and he’ll be walking past and touching this newel post for as long as he’s still working! Every time he walks past that newel a little bit of him will regret that ( for the sake of some Heath Robinson thinking and a couple of hours work) he didn’t do it properly in the first place.


Result? Holding up pieces of cardboard behind the original newel while a shadow is cast onto it to make the pattern, 14′ foot and bike inner tube powered lathe cobbled up in the garage and a few hours later what am I in possession of? Probably the first newel post turned on an un mechanised lathe in a couple of hundred years.

Turing a newel post with some basic equipment and lashed together lathe


The best of this method, is that you get what you want and your Stuff Doer is grateful that they were persuaded in the first place.


I can’t stress enough that, except in the odd extreme situation, you’re better off with a carrot than a stick. (more on extreme situations and how to deal with them later)

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