How to Deal with Difficult People and Stay Sane
I have a record of having difficult bosses. I had not one or two but many. Life is full of difficult people. Sadly it will always be this way. I wish we were all happy and spread the love around but it’s a dream not a reality. At one time or another we all have to deal with people we don’t like. Work, for instance, is a perfect place.
We are thrown into an organisation with lots of people we don’t know. It’s up to us to create a relationship with people. I always start a new job with the greatest intentions. I am ready to work and show how great I am in what I do. I always go extra mile no matter what I do. I always excited and scared to meet everyone.
I remember when I started in a PR agency many years ago in Fulham. I was so excited and scared at the same time. Everyone seemed nice but it didn’t feel right. You know when you have a gut feeling about something? Well, no matter what effort I made to be friends with people I worked there with it didn’t matter. They hated me from day one.
It didn’t matter how great my work was either. It was the first bichiest environment I have ever worked in. It was hard. I was the only foreigner in the office. That was enough not to like me. My work was great too so that was another reason to hate me. Most people like not to work that hard and go out for drinks. I wanted to work. Obviously I didn’t stay there long.
All the things they said about me was what they were doing at work not me. The lesson from this is, is not to take it personally. However, it’s hard not to take personally particularly when it’s not true. People will always say things about you and most of the time they are not true. Believe me! What they say about you it’s a reflection of them not you.
There are ways to deal with it such as confront the people or if you know it’s impossible to have a positive outcome with a chat then I walk away. There’s an amazing story when Budha met an angry man shouting at him. Instead of being insulted Budha asked: “Tell me, if you buy a gift for someone, and that person does not take it, to whom does the gift belong?”
The angry man’s answer was: “It would belong to me, because I bought the gift.” Budha replied: “That is correct. And it is exactly the same with your anger.” It’s a great lesson if someone is having a go at you you shouldn’t feel offended it’s their problem not yours. However, if someone at work, for example, make an accusation, you have to defend yourself.
Most important is to stick to the facts and not get emotional. Easier said than done. I always get upset if someone is ‘attacking’ me and it’s totally incorrect. I had a few occasions at work where I had to prove my innocence but it didn’t make feel great.
Even though I won and was innocent it made me feel awful that anyone would do something like that to another person. I personally don’t understand why would anyone like to cause an argument. I am not a person for arguments. I would rather work more than have an argument or bad mouth anyone.
The people that create arguments have massive issues with themselves. Most of the time it’s one of the following:
- they are super bored and have nothing else to do with their lives;
- they are super jealous and don’t want anyone around them to succeed; or
- they simply want to look they are in charge by putting other people down.
None of these are the issues with another person. All the problems come from one person’s insecurities and the issues they are having. It’s never the person that’s being attacked. The ways to deal with difficult people:
Shut them up by showing amazing results with your work. Great work will always be noticed even if you leave an organisation. The true colours always show. Sometimes it’s hard to show the truth because it takes time for the truth to come out, however, it always does. Take away that worry of your life.
Confront them and speak out. Sometimes it’s great to just let it all out and have a great chin wag. People will listen if you know how to approach them. One has to find the right time and place to go through things one wants to discuss. Both parties need to be civilised for it to happen. If one of them isn’t ready to listen it’s pointless.
Leave. Simple as that! Sometimes it’s best to just leave. Let the other person think whatever they want and let them make mistakes. Think of it this way it will all come out in a wash. If you are an honest person and put your soul and heart in whatever you are doing. It will always show no matter what.
Staying sane is hard if the accusations are insane. However, the best way to think about it is it’s never you (if you didn’t start the argument) and all the accuser doing is reflecting themselves and their problems. Focus on your dreams and goals and tune into love and joy. The universe is magical and full of love.
No matter what other people are doing to your reputation and what they are saying most important to stay with your wonderful heart and soul and spread the love around.