3 Surprisingly Helpful Techniques to Deal with Difficult People

1. Expect Their Presence

If someone treats you poorly, it’s not their behavior that bothers you.

It’s your expectations about their behavior that does.

Imagine, for instance, that your boss gives you a snarky comment.

If you feel agitated, it’s not because of how your boss treated you.

It’s because you didn’t expect your boss to treat you that way.

But if you think about it, that expectation is unrealistic.

The world is full of annoying bosses and other difficult people.

You can’t escape them, so expect them to cross your path occasionally.

That way, they won’t startle you as much, and you’ll be better able to deal with them.

2. See Their Pain

Every person you come across struggles with pain and suffering.

Just like you, everyone you meet deals with daily stressors, difficult emotions, and devastating experiences.

Life is hard, and none of us will escape the tragedies of illness, loss, and death.

Keep that in mind when you engage with family, friends, colleagues, and strangers.

Remind yourself of our shared human condition and that you don’t know what the other person is going through.

Try your best to be kind, gentle, and compassionate.

That way, you’ll elevate your relationships and deepen your appreciation for others.

3. Forgive Their Mistakes

If someone mistreats you, it’s because they don’t know any better.

And since that’s the case, there’s no good reason to get agitated.

You can think of it this way: When someone mistreats you, they do it either unintentionally or intentionally.

If it’s unintentional, it doesn’t make sense to waste energy on their negligence.

And if it’s intentional, they have a character flaw, which is not your job to fix.

You can’t control how other people behave.

All you can control is how you respond to their behavior.

So, practice forgiving people for their negligence and flaws.

The faster you can let go of what they did, the quicker you can move on.