Dealing with Difficult People

I want to talk about dealing with difficult people, as it has come up a few times in the last week.

Dealing with Difficult People

One of the challenges is that you might think you caused the bad behaviour. There is a saying in coaching “I create your behaviour in how I’m being.” It is true that you can affect how someone behaves. But equally, the only person you are responsible for is yourself. You are not to blame for their actions. Nor for the emotional baggage that they are carrying.

All humans want to receive love and respect (irrespective of gender). If someone is pushing themselves forward it is because they want to feel visible. And they want to feel that they matter. When they speak and people ignore them, they feel bad, so they act up to get a reaction. And if they are not using their skills and talents, they will probably have a low self esteem and be bitter.

Remember the naughty child in your class at school? They played up all the time. The typical explanation was “They are just trying to get attention,” as if that made them a criminal. I used to feel sorry for them and wonder, “What’s wrong with that? Adults should give attention to children.” Even when they bullied me, I understood that they did it because they were suffering. I had compassion for them.

So when they grow up without receiving that love and attention from their parents or teachers, they keep looking for it as adults in the workplace.

3 Things you can do when dealing with difficult people

Try to stay calm, even if the atmosphere is stormy and use these techniques to diffuse the situation:

  1. Affirm them so that they feel visible and that they matter.
  2. Listen deeply to them so that they feel heard.
  3. Give them some responsibility so they can feel that people respect them and their life is worthwhile.

Once they feel seen, heard and respected, they are more likely to behave in a respectful way towards you. If you would like any help with dealing with difficult people click here to book a free coaching call with me.


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I help women and men like you to love themselves and  connect with their emotionally distant partners, so that they find their happy ever after. I am a Christian but I love working with couples from other faiths too.

I live in the Caribbean with my husband. We have 4 adult children, one dog and two cats.  

Looking forward to getting to know you and helping you to fix your marriage.


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