To be prosperous in life, you have to be capable in dealing with difficult people. Unfortunately, there are people who want to get in your nerves. They can be found in your school, workplace or even in your own family.
If you allow difficult people to walk on you, they will steal your joy and drain your energy. They will hinder you from having a good day and even block your way to success. Do not let that happen by following the tips below.
1. Do not take it personally
Every time someone tries to make you feel bad, just shake it off. If you know it’s not true, forget what they said and move on. What people say is often a reflection of who they are and nothing to do with you. Be calm and think constructively instead of losing your cool. Have a positive mantra and recite this whenever you are being disturbed by a difficult person.
Difficult people live miserable lives and they spread their misery by making everyone feel miserable too. You will only waste your energy if you become too emotional with what they do or say. Boost your self-esteem and know your self-worth so that you will not be easily bamboozled by difficult people.
2. The moment they start acting out, leave.
Don’t be a victim of someone else’s drama. Show the person that you are not interested. Politely give a short answer to their grievance then tell them you have other things to do.
Let the person feel that you are not welcoming any kind of negative talk or behavior. Letting people display their toxicity on you is giving them a signal that the awful conduct is welcome. Your time and energy are precious; do not waste them on people who don’t respect other people’s time and feelings.
This is also applicable in social media. If a person bullies you online, block them. Delete Facebook friends that spread negativity in your newsfeed.
3. Analyze and appreciate them.
Overcome evil with good. If a person keeps on saying cruel things to you, find ways to compliment that person. This is especially useful if you have no choice but to be with the person. Try to analyze the reason behind the behavior. Why is that person acting out? Look beyond what the person is doing. Rise above your emotions and try to show compassion. Difficult people often have problematic backgrounds. This is tough to do. But if you are a mentally and emotionally strong person, then you can do this.
People who are hard on others have usually poor self-esteem. They tend to cover up their low esteem by projecting it to others. Do not try to battle with them by talking back in a harsh way; it will only make things worse. Negative people tend to love arguments and they often win because their minds are closed. Instead, do the opposite by genuinely complimenting them. Hearing a positive response will surprise them so they will quit the bitterness.
4. Stop them from entering your circle.
You have a degree of control on who stays in your circle. If you are the boss, do not hire toxic employees. If you are applying for a job and notice that the boss is unreasonably difficult, then leave before it’s too late. Leave committees in school or at work that involves a difficult person.
Do not make friends with irrational people. If your girlfriend or boyfriend becomes stubborn over time, then quit the relationship. You will only make your life depressing if you marry a difficult spouse.
5. Avoid topics that trigger their negative behavior.
It’s best to stay away from hot topics like politics and religion because everyone can be sensitive about it. For people you already know, skip topics that already irked them in the past as much as possible. If a co-worker doesn’t want to talk about relationships, then respect that. If your sibling gets irritated if you talk about the past, then don’t talk about it.
Even if the topic is pleasant, some people are easily irritated by the tone of your voice. Be mindful of your tone and gestures when dealing with difficult people.
6. Focus on their positive trait.
Sometimes you have no choice but to know dealing with difficult people. If this is the case, find something you like about him. Every time he gets on your nerves, think of that trait. Think about the things he has done for you. This will help you overlook his offense. Remember the times he has helped you or made you feel better. Concentrating on the good things will make it easier to work with the difficult person.
7. Confront them with their negative behavior.
It is impossible to avoid a toxic behavior forever. Confrontation may be the most challenging way in dealing with difficult people. But if done successfully, it is the best solution. Not only will your problem in facing them stop, you will also help them become a better person.
Confrontation must be planned very well so it will not backfire on you. Make sure to be constructive. Choose a schedule when both of you are at your peak emotional, physical and mental state. Confront the behavior and not the person. Specify the behaviors that are bothering you. Instead of saying that he or she is a ruthless person, say that you are offended when he said that you are dumb. Start with a positive statement before pointing out the negative behavior. You can say, “You are a really good friend of mine but it makes me feel bad every time you dictate me what to do. I am telling you this because I treasure our relationship.”
Approach the person in private so that the person will not feel humiliated. Doing it publicly might make the person even more aggressive. You can also team up with others to do the confrontation if there are more people who are affected by the difficult person. If the method is effective, follow-up with the person’s corrected behavior so that the results will be long-lasting.