Dealing with Difficult People

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This is a 2 part series. Part 1 addresses the different personality types. Then in part 2, we’ll look at how to deal with them in the workplace.

How difficult people affect you resides solely in your hands. Every person has the power to control their own thoughts and actions. We need to make the conscious choice to act versus react to a given situation.

But before we dig a little deeper, we need to get a few things straight. There are some basic rules to the universe that I need you to just accept and move along.

  1. The world is unfair.
  2. People will do what is best for them, not you.
  3. People won’t always do what they should.
  4. If it doesn’t belong to you, and you want it – you have to ask for it.

Have you accepted the rules? It’s my premise that the difficult people in life, have never, and will never, grasp those concepts. It’s always someone else’s fault. It’s never that someone worked hard to achieve success – somehow it just fell in their lap. You know exactly what I’m talking about, right? In fact you probably just thought of someone.

So let’s identify who it is that’s driving you nuts. I’m sure you can find someone in your life that falls into these categories.

There’s Subtle Shannon. She’s the queen of off handed compliments. The “You look great in that dress, but what’s up with your hair?” There’s always a “but” at the end of their sentence.

Or how about Sneaky Steve? He makes everything a joke. “Don’t get mad, I was just kidding.”

Betty Bomber just explodes and the fallout hits you square in the face.

Stacey Sniper is one of the most destructive. She appears friendly, but takes pot shots behind your back.

Frank Fault Finder is the eternal pessimist.

Eric Encyclopedia knows everything about anything and remembers anything anyone has ever done to him.

And finally there is Victim Victor. He has an ever present cloud following him. His view of the world is negative and no amount of cheering him up will accomplish the mission.

After identifying the saboteurs of your good mood, the best thing you can do is accept their behavior has little to do with you and everything to do with them. By accepting this premise and putting in measures to protect yourself you can out maneuver this motley crew of negativity and survive the difficult people in your path.

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