Managing Difficult People and 12 Steps You Must Take
Dealing with difficult people is tough work. Dealing with difficult people at work or in your personal life is never easy. These people can be irritating, bothersome, problematic, rigid and very stressful for you. However, most advice focuses on how you communicate directly with these people. But planning and preparation is an important and often overlooked part of dealing with difficult people.
So here are 12 of my top steps to help you in successfully preparing to deal with difficult people in any situation.
1. LISTEN WITH YOUR EARS AND EYES TO WHAT IS HAPPENING AROUND YOU
Begin by listening not just with your ears but also with your eyes. Your ears can listen for the words. But your eyes will see the non-verbal language of others. Make yourself aware of what others are saying and doing. Awareness means many issues can be dealt with before they become bigger problems.
2. DO NOT IGNORE IT BECAUSE IT WON’T GO AWAY
Do not try to just ignore it all because it will actually not go away. When you are managing other people do respond to their needs. Trying to ignore difficult people and hoping that awkward situations will just go away doesn’t work. You will need to be prepared to take some action in dealing with difficult people.
3. CHANGE YOUR PERSPECTIVE AND EVERYTHING ELSE WILL CHANGE
Make the decision to change your perspective in managing difficult people. Consider it to be a learning experience and not a problem. Be ready to learn the lessons that these difficult people bring your way.
4. CHANGE YOUR RESPONSES TO A LEARNING EXPERIENCE
When you alter your perspective, then your responses also change. You will become more able to see and use other strategies in dealing with difficult people that you would not have used before.
5. STAY OBJECTIVE AND REDUCE SUBJECTIVITY
Strive to be objective not subjective. The more subjective you become, then the more emotional you are too. Emotion clouds your ability to think and act clearly. So try and look at the facts and be objective.
6. SEE YOURSELF AS CALM AND PROFESSIONAL
To assist you to be as objective as possible see yourself as a calm, cool and collected professional. This does not mean that you are cold and heartless. But that in handling difficult people you are professional and calm.
7. STEP BACK AND LOOK FROM THE OUTSIDE IN
Strive to step further back and see the situation from the outside looking in. See yourself as an observer of the situation. This helps to give you a different perspective and see the big picture in managing difficult people and situations.
8. CHOOSE YOUR BATTLES WELL BEFORE TAKING UP THE FIGHT
Carefully decide what situations to pursue and what issues to leave alone. Sometimes in managing difficult people you see everything they do as negative. You are then constantly on the battleground with them.
9. AIM TO BE HONEST AND OPEN
Avoid the emotional game playing that many others do. Strive to be open and honest. Your reputation is very important and others need to trust you and your honesty at all times.
10. BE RESPECTFUL OF OTHERS
Despite how irritating and annoying others are, be respectful. Being disrespectful and abusive to others only shows up your lack of control. No matter what the other person is like, remain respectful. Respectful communication should be your goal.
11. HAVE EMPATHY FOR ANOTHER HUMAN BEING
Understand that you are dealing with a human being. They have both their strengths and weaknesses. Show some empathy and you’ll be surprised what a difference this can make in communicating with them.
12. PREPARE TO GET READY TO GO UNDER THE SURFACE
Managing difficult people does means that you understand that the behavior you see on the surface is the tip of the iceberg. To know why a person behaves in a certain way means going deeper in trying to communicate with them.
THE FOUNDATIONS OF YOUR SUCCESS
Taking on board these 12 steps is the foundation you need to ensure your success in dealing with difficult people in your personal life and managing difficult people in your working life.
© Dr Judy Esmond. This article may be shared with others on the understanding that it remains intact and credit is given to the author and the website link http://www.dealingwithdifficultpeople.com
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