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7 Tips and Insights to Deal with Difficult People

Office of Difficult People

Do you have to interact with any difficult people?  If so, I am sure you wish they would go away.  The negative experiences are most likely affecting your own performance and well-being.  Dealing with difficult people is frustrating and exhausting!   Unfortunately, if the difficult person is your boss, co-worker, spouse, child, parent, or teacher they will not go away.  Will you accept the behavior and keep letting it occur or will you walk away?  Learning how to deal with difficult people will help you handle the person each time you interact with them.

A difficult person is defined as someone who continues to demonstrate unfavorable, disrespectful, or immature behaviors after multiple effective techniques have been tried to change their behaviors.  Sometimes the negative behaviors keep occurring because the difficult person was never called-out on their behavior.  On other occasions, the methods used to call-out the difficult person were not effective techniques.  Lastly, no matter what you do, some people will never change.  When the later occurs, you must make a choice about how you will think and react the next time you interact with the difficult person.

7 Tips and Insights for Dealing with Difficult People

  1. Keep in mind, that 90% of what someone says is about them, which means only 10% is about you.  There are a lot of self-absorbed people with low self-esteem. Try not to take these people personally…it is all about them.
  2. Focus on being collaborative instead of competitive.  Perceiving people as the enemy will guarantee strife and failure. Get over your own ego, and give credit where credit is due.
  3. Ignore gossipers and do not participate in the conversation.  People with low self-esteem love to gossip and make fun of people. This display of immaturity makes them feel superior.
  4. Do not rise to their level of anger and screaming. Keep your cool by taking a time-out.
  5. Hold passive-aggressive people accountable by encouraging them to speak their truth.
  6. Set clear boundaries and limitations.  If necessary, remove or distance difficult people from your close circles.
  7. Seek relationships with healthy, positive people.

I challenge you to think about how you will respond the next time you interact with the difficult person in your life.  If you do not change how you respond to difficult people, the negative experience will keep happening in YOUR life.  Keep in mind that you cannot change others. You can only change yourself.  This is YOUR life, make it a good one!

Be strong, be wise, be delicious!

Nancy