Most of us encounter unreasonable people in our lives. We may be “stuck” with a difficult individual at work or at home. It’s easy to let a challenging person affect us and ruin our day. What are some of the keys to empowering yourself in such situations?
Below are the keys to handling unreasonable and difficult people. Keep in mind that these are general rules of thumb, and not all of the tips may apply to your particular situation. Simply utilize what works and leave the rest.
Know Their Intentions
Before you go on the attack, make sure you know their intentions. Not all aggressive and controlling people have bad intentions. Sometimes they’re just passionate about something and they get carried away. They aren’t necessarily trying to belittle or intimidate you. They just think they know what’s best. If you feel like their intentions are good, but they’re overstepping their bounds, be polite and tell them, “Thanks, but no thanks.” But if you feel like they’re being overbearing, aggressive and controlling because they enjoy feeling powerful, you need to put them in their place.
Their Way is the Right Way
Have you ever met someone who thinks if you don’t follow their directions you’ll screw up? But everyone does things their own way and you need to remind this person that there is more than one way to get to the same outcome. Sure, they’ll lie in wait, hoping and waiting for you to fail, and when you succeed, they’ll be disappointed. But you know who won’t be disappointed? You! That’s because you proved them wrong.
Is the aggressive and controlling person in your life the loudest person in the room? Do they huff, puff and make big gestures? This behavior is meant to be intimidating and just sitting there listening and watching them is exhausting. Sometimes it’s even scary.
Aggressive and controlling people rely on their ability to intimidate others as a means of getting what they want. With every person they control through intimidation, their ego gets fed a little more. But you don’t have to be part of that ego-feeding machine. Put them in their place and do it politely. Being assertive in this way is great for your self-esteem and lets others know just how strong you are.
When someone is talking at you and insisting on having their way, how do you react? Do you feel defeated or numb? Do you just give in? Maybe you think going “belly up” is the best way to deal with these kind of people, but it isn’t. It’s just a band-aid on a dysfunctional situation. Don’t surrender. Don’t give in. Make your point and stand your ground. It isn’t about winning. It’s about letting that aggressive and controlling person know you’re a force to be reckoned with.
Only You Control You
You can’t make someone less controlling and aggressive. All you can do is respond appropriately to them. Be polite, but firm. You’re not a child and you know what’s good for you and your life path. You have the right to make your own decisions. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.