How to communicate correctly with someone you don’t like! Psychological techniques. Conflict resolution

Sometimes we all, regardless of our desire, have to communicate with unpleasant people. These could be relatives, colleagues, clients, acquaintances, neighbors, bosses, etc. It is important to know the means of communicating with unpleasant people.

What kind of unpleasant people are they? They cause us irritation, fear, anger, confusion, we feel helpless, insecure, cannot resist them, and feel pressure.

And how do we usually react? We ignore them and walk away, snap at them, raise our voices in response, try to convince them or calm them down, give advice, laugh them off...

Most often, such people are “energy vampires” who “feed” on our energy. Unfortunately, they can only “assimilate” the energy received from people like them - from boors, but they are not very keen to give it to them. So they have to “feed” on us – calm, adequate people.

And you, my friend, are not a saint!

The thing to remember is that you are not perfect either: what you feel for one, another may feel for you. We are all human and we have flaws!

You can usually avoid someone who is unpleasant. However, at some point such contact will become inevitable: through work, study, or it will be the boyfriend of your best friend. Using the tips below, you may find that difficult people can also benefit greatly from looking at things from a different perspective.

Successful people understand that such communication restrictions limit your own development!

We understand crazy people

Having worked as a psychiatrist for decades, I can say that I understand crazy people, including deeply ill people. I'm willing to bet that you encounter at least one irrational person almost every day. For example, this is a boss who demands the impossible. A picky parent, an aggressive teenager, a manipulative colleague or a neighbor screaming at you, a sobbing lover or a quarrelsome client with unreasonable claims. When I say “crazy” or “crazy,” I mean that the person is behaving irrationally.

There are four signs that the people you deal with are irrational:

1) they do not have a clear picture of the world;

2) they say or do things that don't make sense;

3) they make decisions or take actions not in their own interests;

4) when you try to bring them back to the path of prudence, they become completely unbearable.

Key: become a psycho yourself

The tools I will discuss require courage to use. Because you won't just ignore the psychos and wait for them to go away. You will not argue with them or try to convince them. Instead, you will have to feel the madness and start behaving the same way.

Many years ago, someone explained to me what to do when a dog grabs your arm. If you trust your instincts and pull your hand away, the dog will sink its teeth even deeper. But if you use a non-obvious solution and push your hand deeper into the throat, the dog will loosen its grip. Why? Because the dog will want to swallow, for which he needs to relax his jaw. This is where you pull your hand out.

You can interact with irrational people in a similar way. If you treat them as if they are crazy and you are not, they will only fall deeper into crazy thoughts. But if you start acting like a crazy person yourself, it will change the situation dramatically.

Here's an example. After one of the most disgusting days of my life, on the way home, I concentrated on the troubles that had befallen me and drove the car on autopilot. Unfortunately for me, this all happened during California's extremely dangerous rush hour.

At some point, I accidentally cut off a pickup truck in which a big guy and his wife were sitting. He beeped angrily and I waved my hand to show that I was sorry. But then - just a couple of kilometers later - I cut him off again. Then the man caught up with me and abruptly stopped the truck in front of my car, forcing me to pull over to the side of the road. As I slowed down, I saw his wife frantically gesticulating, asking him not to get out of the car. Of course, he didn’t pay attention to her and a few moments later he already found himself on the road - two meters tall and weighing 140 kilograms.

He abruptly approached me and began knocking on the glass, shouting curses. I was so stunned that I even rolled down the window so I could hear him. Then I waited for him to pause so he could pour more bile on me. And when he paused to catch his breath, I said to him, “Have you ever had such a terrible day that you just hoped that someone would pull out a gun and shoot you and end all the suffering? Is this someone you? His jaw dropped. "What?" - he asked. Up to this point I had been very stupid. But suddenly I did something brilliant. In some incredible way, despite my foggy mind, I said exactly what was needed.

I did not try to negotiate with this intimidating man - most likely, instead of answering, he would have pulled me out of the car and hit me in the face with his huge fist. I didn't try to resist. I just became just as crazy and hit him with his own weapon.

He stared at me and I spoke again: “Yes, I'm serious. I don't usually cut people off and I've never cut someone off twice before. It's just that today is the day when it doesn't matter what I do or who I meet - including you! - everything goes wrong. Will you be the person who will mercifully end my existence?”

He immediately changed, calmed down and started encouraging me: “Hey. What are you doing, guy,” he said. - Everything will be OK. Honestly! Relax, everyone has bad days."

I continued my tirade: “Easy for you to say! You didn’t ruin everything you touched today, unlike me. I don't think anything will ever get better for me. Will you help me?"

He continued enthusiastically: “No, really. I am not kidding! Everything will be alright. Have a rest".

We talked for a few more minutes. Then he returned to the truck, said something to his wife and waved to me in the mirror, as if to say: “Remember. Calm down. Everything will be fine". And he left.

Now I'm not proud of this story. To be fair, the guy in the pickup wasn't the only irrational person on the road that day. But here's what I'm getting at.

That big guy could have taken my lungs off. And, perhaps, he would have done this if I had tried to reason with him or argue with him. But I met him in his reality, where I was a bad person and he had every reason to hit me. Instinctively using a technique I call aggressive submission, I turned him from enemy to ally in less than a minute.

Luckily, my reaction was natural, even on that really bad day. This happened because over many years of working as a psychiatrist, I put myself in the place of crazy people. I've done this thousands of times, in different ways, and I know it works. Moreover, I know it will work for you too.

The Psycho Mask is a strategy you can use with any irrational person.

For example, to talk:

  • • with a partner who yells at you or refuses to talk to you;
  • • with a child screaming “I hate you!” or “I hate myself!”;
  • • with an aging parent who thinks you don't care about them;
  • • with an employee who is constantly slacking off at work;
  • • with a manager who is always trying to hurt you.

No matter what type of crazy person you're dealing with, learning to become a crazy person yourself will allow you to get rid of failed communication strategies and reach people.

As a result, you will be able to get involved in almost any emotional situation and feel confident and in control.

The Prudence Cycle Instead of Fight or Flight

Keep in mind that you will have to consciously get used to the role of a psycho, because your body will not want you to behave in this way. When you communicate with an irrational person, your body sends signals warning you of danger. Pay attention to this sometime and see for yourself: your throat tightens, your pulse quickens, your stomach or head begins to hurt. For such a physiological reaction, sometimes it is enough to simply name the name of an unpleasant acquaintance.

It's your reptilian brain telling you to attack or run away. But if an irrational person is part of your personal or professional life, none of your instinctive reactions will help solve the problem. I'm going to teach you how to work through madness in a completely different way using a six-step process. I call it the "Prudence Cycle"

Here's what you need to do at each stage of this cycle.

1. Understand that the person you are confronted with is not capable of thinking rationally in this situation. Realize that the deep roots of his irrationality lie more in the distant (or not very distant) past, rather than in the current moment, so now you are unlikely to be able to argue or convince him.

2. Determine the other person's modus operandi - the unique set of actions that he resorts to when he is not himself. His strategy is to throw you off balance, make you angry, afraid, frustrated or guilty.

Once you understand the course of action, you will feel calmer, more focused and in control of the situation, and will be able to choose an appropriate counter-strategy.

3. Realize that crazy behavior is not about you. But it says a lot about the person you are dealing with. By ceasing to take his words personally, you will deprive the enemy of an important weapon. At the same time, use the necessary psychological tools during the conversation, they will keep you from falling into madness.

These tools will help you avoid “amygdala hijack,” an intense emotional reaction to a sudden threat. This term, coined by psychologist Daniel Goleman, describes a condition where the amygdala, the part of your brain responsible for generating fear, blocks rational thinking.

4. Talk to the irrational person, plunging into the world of his madness, calmly and objectively. First, accept the person's innocence as a given. This means that you must believe that the person is actually good and there is a reason for his behavior. Try not to judge, but to understand what caused this.

Secondly, imagine that you are experiencing the same emotions: aggression, misunderstanding, threat.

5. Show that you are an ally, not an enemy: Listen calmly and carefully to the person while he is blowing off steam. Instead of interrupting, let him speak. This way you will surprise the person who is waiting for a retaliatory attack and get closer to him.

You can even apologize. And the more carefully and sensitively you reflect your opponent’s emotions, the sooner he himself will begin to listen to you.

6. When the person calms down, help him move on to more reasonable actions.

These steps are the basis for most of the psychological techniques I teach you (although there may be variations, such as when dealing with bullies, manipulators, or psychopaths).

However, keep in mind that going through the cycle of prudence with an irrational person is not always easy or fun, and this technique does not always work instantly. And, as with everything in our lives, there is a risk that it will not work at all (and there is even a possibility that the situation will get worse). But if you are desperately trying to reach someone who is difficult or impossible to control, this method is probably the best choice.

But before I get into my methods for dealing with crazy people, I'd like to talk a little about why people act irrationally. We'll look first at what's going on in their brains now, and then at what happened to them in the past.

Recognizing the mechanism of madness

To successfully talk to crazy people, you need to understand why irrational people behave the way they do. And the first step in this direction is to admit that they are much more like psychos than you thought. Take a moment to think about people with mental illness - those suffering from schizophrenia or delusional depression. Do you understand that talking will not help solve the problems of these patients? It wouldn’t occur to you to tell them: “Hey, you understand that he’s not really the Antichrist?” or “Your life isn’t that bad, so take the gun out of your mouth and go mow the lawn.” However, I think this is how you communicate with household psychos. For some reason it seems to you that you can easily reason with them.

For example, you probably use phrases like these.

  • • “Calm down—you're overreacting.”
  • • “That doesn’t make any sense.”
  • • “You can’t really believe it. Here are the facts."
  • • “Get back to earth, this is complete nonsense!”
  • • “Wait a did you even think of that?”

I'm sure you've come across the popular definition of a crazy person: a person who repeats the same actions over and over again, expecting a new result. Well, if you constantly communicate with psychos in much the same way as I described above, not receiving the expected answer, but hoping for it, know: in fact, you are also not yourself.

Why, you ask?

Because everyday madness, like real psychosis, cannot be cured by ordinary conversations. It does not operate with facts or logic.

The psycho, despite your attempts to convince him, is still unable to suddenly change his behavior. Mad people don't refuse to change it, they can't do it.

Most people who behave irrationally are not by any stretch of the imagination what we would call sick, but like true psychopaths, they are incapable of thinking rationally. This is because the reason for such behavior is a mismatch in the brain (more precisely, in three brain structures), and a mismatched brain cannot respond normally to the arguments of reason.

The Science of Madness

To understand psychos, you need to know at least in general terms how madness develops. Now I will talk a little about the work of consciousness and how we go crazy.

First, thinking requires three parts of the brain. These three structures are interconnected, but often act autonomously. Sometimes they are at odds with each other. Under stress, they sometimes lose touch. If the stress is too much, communication between parts of the brain always stops. And often the re-setting of connections occurs in such a way that irrational people find themselves trapped in madness.

Neuroscientist Paul MacLean, who first described the triune, or tripartite, model of the brain back in the 1960s, described it in more detail in his 1990 book The Triune Brain in Evolution.

Here is a brief description of each structure and its functionality.

  • First, the basic, ancient brain (sometimes called the reptilian brain). It focuses on what is necessary for survival: finding food, mating, escaping danger, attacking.
  • The next part is the midbrain, the limbic system. It is found in all mammals and is responsible for emotions: joy, hatred, the desire to protect, sadness, pleasure. And also for forming a bond between you and your partner or, for example, your child.
  • The last layer is the neocortex, the cerebral cortex, which is responsible for higher nervous activity. Being the most developed structure of the three, it allows you to make optimal decisions, plan actions and control impulses. Most importantly, the neocortex is how you evaluate situations objectively, not subjectively.

These different parts of the brain developed sequentially, which is why they are arranged in layers, one above the other. When you are born, all three parts of the brain are already present in your body. If you're lucky, over time they form healthy connections that allow you to coordinate your survival instincts, emotions, and logical thought processes. In this case, each of the three structures can, at the right moment, take control of what is happening, but at the same time, the most evolutionarily developed neocortex will manage all processes. I call this the triune flexibility.

If you have it, you are able to approach the situation from one side, and when new circumstances are discovered, you can think about another option and successfully cope with some task in a new reality. With the triune flexibility, you can easily adapt to circumstances and gain the ability to cope even with major setbacks and real tragedies. Sometimes you do lose your mind when a disorder causes three parts of the brain to temporarily become out of sync, but you quickly bounce back.

What happens if early life experiences lead to less healthy wiring of parts of the brain?

If your parents harshly criticized you, as an adult, you will begin to think something like this: “It’s not entirely safe to say what you think.” If this happens often, then you will believe that the world is an alarming place, and you will be afraid and tense not only when communicating with a critic, but also with other people. Then your three parts of the brain become blocked and unite only in such a way as if you constantly see a parent in front of you, hear criticism addressed to you and think that it is unsafe to give the wrong answer. And if, for example, a school teacher asks you a question, you remain silent or answer: “I don’t know.” Your brain is trapped in the triune rigidity, so in any situation that reminds you of a critical parent, your feelings, thoughts and actions will slide into one repeating scenario. In psychology, this is called transference, or transference, because you transfer thoughts and feelings about a person who is not nearby to someone with whom you interact here and now.

In conditions of triune rigidity, your three brains find themselves united in a reality that is far from the one in which you currently exist. You begin to mistakenly use old techniques in conditions in which they do not make sense, and become unable to correct your behavior in the future. Result? Chronic crazy behavior: you repeat the same actions over and over again and hope that the new reality will eventually turn into the old one, where such behavior brought success.

Three paths to madness (and one to sanity)

Since madness is preceded by an imbalance in the functioning of certain areas of the brain, it is necessary to work with this condition not from the outside - trying to reason with an irrational person with facts - but from the inside. To do this, it is worth understanding how the main forms of madness are embedded in our behavior already in the early years of life. First, there are congenital factors. For example, if a person has inherited genes that cause a tendency toward increased anxiety, pessimism, and excessive emotionality, then his path to madness will be somewhat shorter than in other cases. Secondly, and this is an equally important factor, childhood impressions and experiences seriously influence the state of the psyche in subsequent years. Now I will give a few examples. Life is a constant movement towards the unknown. Taking the next step into the unknown, we encounter problems, due to which we feel either joyful excitement or anxiety, and sometimes both at once.

Sometimes we feel like we are too far removed from our familiar and safe environment, which causes us to experience separation anxiety. Over time, we learn to overcome such anxiety - and we are faced with a new type of anxiety, which is called individualization anxiety: childhood passes, and we begin to worry whether we will be able to successfully overcome growing up and become successful in adulthood. This is a normal stage of psychological development. During this period of development, we are especially sensitive to the behavior of people close to us. When taking a successful step forward, we always look back and wait for extremely important words like “well done, you’re doing it!” And if we encounter an obstacle, we wait for confirmation from loved ones that there is nothing wrong and it’s quite normal to retreat and try again. Development is always realized as a series of trials and errors: a couple of steps forward, then a small step back.

But what if we don’t get the support we need at a difficult moment? In the face of the unknown, we lose confidence, succeed less often, and make mistakes more often. It turns out that after every couple of steps forward we take three steps back. By mastering such a pattern of behavior, a person loses the ability to develop and adapt, locks himself within the framework of the inert trinity of the main zones of the brain and, as a result, becomes more or less psychotic. There are three wrong paths that lead to madness, and one way to maintain sanity. Let's discuss each of them.

Mistake #1: Being spoiled

Have you ever encountered people who constantly complain about something, try to manipulate, or expect applause for any reason? Chances are they are already on the path to insanity. Spoiledness is formed in different ways. Sometimes this happens because parents or caregivers rush to console the child whenever he or she gets upset. It happens that adults praise children too much or justify even the most outrageous behavior. Such adults do not understand that pampering is not the same as showing love and care.

A child accustomed to such treatment is doomed to experience a nervous breakdown whenever those around him do not show sufficient enthusiasm for him. Those who were overly pampered in childhood develop a peculiar form of madness, when a person in any situation easily convinces himself: “Someone will do everything for me.” Such people believe that they will be successful and happy without any effort. They often develop unhealthy dependent behavior, because the main goal is to fight a bad mood, and not to find a constructive solution to emerging problems.

Have you ever dealt with people who get angry and blame others for everything? It is possible that when they sought support at an early age, they received only criticism in return. They were in pain; the pain quickly turned to anger.

Mistake #2: Criticism

Children who are constantly scolded and criticized as teenagers try to take revenge by doing things that make the adults around them ashamed. Often such young people resort to more sophisticated ways to vent their anger: aggressively suppressing others, driving recklessly, cutting themselves, or getting into piercings. What happens when such a person faces a problem? He feels like a victim, but since his most familiar behavior pattern involves only accusations and criticism, he begins to do just that, losing the ability to forgive over time and becoming more and more embittered.

Because these children were endlessly scolded as children, their madness over the years takes on the following form: “No matter what I do, I will never be worthy of approval.” And even when they succeed, they do not allow themselves to enjoy the moment and wait for the inevitable returning to the usual cycle. It is obvious that the world around them causes them more and more rejection and anger.

Mistake #3: Ignoring

When a person rejects any idea because he is sure that nothing will work out, we can safely assume that in childhood the adults around him largely ignored him and, perhaps, were prone to narcissism. It is also possible that they were simply terribly exhausted, overburdened with worries, or even sick. This also happens to adoptive parents if at heart they are not particularly interested in the child. Now the child has won another victory and looks back at the adults to share the triumph with them, but sees that they did not notice anything at all. Or the child has failed and is waiting for support - and adults are busy with their own affairs or problems. The child becomes scared, and, what is especially bad, he begins to realize that he is left alone with his fear.

This is how a person becomes a pessimist, prepared in advance for defeat and convinced that nothing worthwhile will ever come of any idea. Trying new things is becoming more and more difficult, because you can make a mistake and again find yourself alone with fear, the fight with which he lost in childhood. The form of madness of such people is: “I will neither try nor take risks.”

Ideal scenario: support

Think of the most intelligent and balanced people you know who you would describe as wise, kind, pleasant, resilient, and emotionally intelligent. From my experience, I conclude that emotional stability was formed in such people in childhood. They were lucky: every time after a victory or defeat, one of the adults: parents, teachers, mentors - provided the necessary support. These people were neither spoiled nor depressed by criticism and did not suffer from lack of attention. Adults taught, guided, helped. At the same time, adults are not required to be perfect in everything - otherwise there would be a shortage of children growing into balanced and wise adults. But adults must provide the child with what I call an adequate level of care.

Children grow up confident when surrounded by such adults. When faced with difficulties, such a person says to himself: “I can handle it.” And all because even as a child he always had the support of loving adults - and it was imprinted in the subconscious. Having failed, these people do not complain, do not blame anyone, and do not withdraw into themselves. They maintain a fighting spirit, acting on the principle: “Hold on, world, I’m coming!” Sometimes they behave like crazy people - this happens to each of us. But for them, madness is only a temporary state.

(By the way, even if your parents didn’t support you enough as a child, there is hope. A good coach or teacher will still help you find a healthy mindset - this is exactly what happened for me. So if you were scolded, spoiled or ignored a lot as a child, look for people who can give you the support you need now.)

Temporary and chronic insanity

As I already said, no one manages to live life without temporary cloudings. When severe stress has a negative impact on the brain, any of us - even the most resilient and strong-willed - temporarily lose control of ourselves. Albert Einstein once said: “The most important decision for each of us is whether to consider the world around us dangerous or safe.” Unfortunately, chronically irrational people make the wrong decision about this at some point. Those of us whose three levels of the brain remain in constant healthy interaction, maintaining flexibility and resilience, move forward confidently.

Those who are unable to overcome the rigidity of the main areas of the brain do not perceive the world as a safe place. They constantly feel threatened, which is why they begin to behave more and more senselessly.

They focus either on self-preservation (“I am in danger and must do everything to survive”) or on maintaining their own identity (“This is who I am, and only by maintaining my current identity do I feel confident, competent, able to manage the situation”). . These people seem to live in a holographic projection, created by themselves based on past experiences and depicting a fictional world. They don't see the new reality. And therein lies a serious danger.

It seems that in a chronically irrational person, the brain behaves like a compass, always pointing towards the magnetic pole. And if life pushes such a person towards the east, west or south, he resists with all his might and does not want to know anything other than the northern direction - as if if he moves even one step, he will lose control over his own life or even die. We understand that this is just resistance to change, but such people consider such behavior to be persistence worthy of praise. They stubbornly cling to previous knowledge and beliefs, regardless of their relevance. As a result, all their efforts are spent trying to maintain their usual comfort zone.

And the more the brain conflicts with the changing reality, the more fiercely the person himself clings to the familiar picture of the world and the more inappropriately he behaves.

The stronger the imbalance in the functioning of the three levels of the brain, the sooner a person loses touch with reality.

Anxiety quickly develops into panic, and then the person becomes completely desperate.

Obviously, in a state of panic, these people perceive reality completely differently from how you see it, which is why it makes no sense to talk to them the way you would talk to a rational interlocutor.

In your world, two and two are exactly four, but in their special world it is perhaps six.

We observe a similar picture during periods of temporary insanity, but in a chronically irrational person such behavior dominates. This is why you cannot help an irrational person regain touch with reality through logical arguments. Therefore, you will have to master the laws of the world designed by a crazy brain, and be ready to defend your position in a world where two and two are six. Now is the time to figure out exactly what type of madness you are dealing with. To do this, you need to understand a person's modus operandi.

How to determine the modus operandi of an irrational person

Each killer has a certain modus operandi (M.O.). Let's say, one uses a knife, another prefers a bomb, a third prefers a bullet. In approximately the same way, all irrational personalities develop an individual type of madness. Thanks to this, they manage to get what they want from you without giving anything in return. Different psychos find their own tricks: cry, withdraw into themselves, be sarcastic, show no emotions, or complain endlessly. Why do they behave this way? To maintain control over the situation, which they are afraid of losing. So they subconsciously seek to take control away from you and find ways to get you to react immediately and spontaneously to their behavior.

And this happens when the amygdala, located in the middle, emotional part of the brain, reacts spontaneously and blocks the work of the prefrontal cortex - the part of the brain located in the frontal lobe that is responsible for logic and rational thinking - and activates the work of your reptilian brain, which controls the reaction " fight or flight." If such tactics are successful, you will be overwhelmed by emotions, and it will become difficult to think logically. In the end, you either break down or look for ways to avoid further communication, losing the opportunity to get a rational view of the situation from your interlocutor. The M.O. of an irrational person is his weapon. But at the same time, this is also the weakest point, because, having figured out what the essence of his M.O. is, you will be able to profitably use this information.

The behavior of a person stuck in a certain M.O. is predictable, and you always know what reaction to prepare for on his part, be it tears, hysteria, silence, aggression. And when you are ready, it is much easier for you to control your own emotions.

Accept those you don't like

The truth of life is that we do not always come into contact with pleasant people. Just admit to yourself that you don't have to get along with someone. If you don't like a person, it doesn't mean that you are a terrible conversationalist.

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But you need to find a compromise and get along with others. Therefore, being honest with yourself is the very first place to start. Do not pretend that you are experiencing negative emotions - this will lead to great difficulties.

Be firm when necessary

If a person does not adhere to established boundaries, then force him to do so. To begin with, you can limit yourself to a polite remark. If he doesn't understand the hints, then it makes sense to explain everything directly, without beating around the bush. Of course, some may find this impolite. Of course, you can condone a person, but do not be surprised when one day he shamelessly invades your personal space, causing you a lot of inconvenience. And in any case, you will be forced to show firmness in order to return to a comfortable state.

Mindfulness is the antidote to toxic relationships

Being around toxic people can have a terrible impact on our emotions. They can drive you crazy, but only if you allow it. The power over emotions is in your hands. This doesn't mean you ignore the person or their feelings. Admit to yourself that he annoys you and he likes it. Feel the evil completely - and relax. Smile and nod in response - this will discourage the “vampire”.

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Discipline your Ego

Some people may feel that intolerance towards others is proof of their own exclusivity and superiority over people. It seemed so to me too. Since I constantly criticize people, since their actions always make me angry, it means that I am better and higher than them, so I thought.

In fact, everything is completely different. The more anger, envy, vanity, bitterness, and unhappiness in a person, the stronger his intolerance towards other people. His own inner “dirt” is projected onto the outside world, onto people.

And the happier and more harmonious a person is, the fewer strong vices and passions he has, the less pronounced his Ego, which envies, gloats and is proud, the stronger his tolerance and love for everyone else.

After all, intolerance does not just arise. Often the actions of other people touch strings of your personality: your belief in the exclusivity and importance of your own self, your vanity, your complexes. This is what many call the Ego.

And the stronger a person’s ego, the easier it is to hurt, offend, offend, provoke hatred and anger. Therefore, such a person will find it very difficult to tolerate other people.

Therefore, do not think that intolerance speaks of your special exclusivity. It is only a reflection of your own vices, your inner “demons”.

Learn to restrain your own Ego, control your destructive emotions such as envy and anger. How to do it? Some of the information is reflected in my article on how to control your emotions.

Meditation will help you be calmer, more harmonious, joyful and, as a result, more tolerant of people.

The famous commandment “love your neighbor” is a high spiritual guideline for me. And I want it to be the same for you, regardless of your religion. It's not easy to love people. Love for one's neighbor should be cultivated and developed within oneself for a long time. And the source of this love will not be other people, but you yourself. When you discover love and harmony within yourself, these feelings will begin to be projected onto the entire outside world!

Tactfulness is in full swing

Being tactful is much more valuable than getting along with your temperament. Develop a diplomatically indifferent face - this means trying to treat everyone with politeness and tolerance. No, this does not mean agreeing with a person you dislike, but maintaining a level of decency when interacting with him is necessary.

Be gentle but assertive in your question and position. Focus on the problems that need to be solved, not on attacking your opponent. If you learn to do this consistently, you will look like a professional and gain an advantage in any situation.

Don't take it personally

Everything that people do is only for their own benefit, not for yours. They may attack you either because of personal hostility, or because they simply “caught their hand.” Take the initiative in communicating with an unpleasant character, having first considered ways to react calmly, and also see a clear picture of such behavior.

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This way you will not overreact to those who react this way to you. Remember that every situation includes both a person and an issue being discussed. Concentrate on the second point, without forgetting the first!

Rise higher or you'll fall on your face

A toxic person is the easiest to react to because he often behaves defiantly. If you stoop to his level, he will drag you into an argument and make you the initiator.

Don't let your emotions take over. It is not necessary to react to such antics - focus on rational facts and responses to attacks from the outside. State a clear issue that everyone is here for, but do it diplomatically.

Try to understand other people

If you try to understand the actions of other people, instead of immediately criticizing and condemning them, then you will find that a person’s actions are natural consequences of his thoughts, mental state and worldview.

This is a pretty obvious idea, but let's dwell on it. Anger and frustration are usually caused by an abyss of misunderstanding, namely the fact that you cannot put yourself in the other person’s shoes, so some of his actions seem inexplicable, mean and deserving of condemnation.

Imagine that some elderly woman was rude to you on the subway. I agree that it is very difficult to put yourself in her shoes unless you are a gruff older woman yourself. But you can at least guess a little about the state of such a person.

As people age, they develop health problems that have a negative impact on their emotional state. The woman who was rude to you spends her days in queues, where she communicates with people who are equally dissatisfied with their lives.

Most likely, there are still some problems in her life, like other people, but due to her age, it is harder for her to abstract from them. Her mind is no longer so aware of the difference between good and bad. She does not know how to recognize her emotions and transfers her irritation and dissatisfaction to other people. It seems to her that other people owe her boundless respect only because of her age.

If you try to understand another person even a little, you will realize two things.

First, his anger and malice are logical consequences of himself. This is not to say that they are strictly caused by your actions. Their source is the many internal characteristics of a given person. At the same time, this person himself considers his actions correct and fair! He does not see meanness and evil intent in them.

He does this not because he is somehow evil or mean, but for many, many reasons! Each person’s actions have their own internal reasons! And if these reasons are represented at least a little, we will experience less anger than if we perceive other people’s actions in isolation, in isolation from the reasons that determine them.

In such a context, this act will not be vile, but rather natural. And such actions are much easier to tolerate.

Secondly, it will be easier for you to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and, thanks to this, show more understanding towards him. And if you begin to empathize with a person, feel him, understand that you yourself can experience the same thing that he experiences, then your anger and resentment will go away.

Yes, you are not an old woman, but have you never gotten angry for nothing? Haven't stress at work ever provoked you to take your anger out on others? Have you never been stubborn, not admitting your own guilt, which took place?

Perhaps in your case the irritation never reached such a limit (although who knows), but still, you probably experienced something similar. Therefore, you can understand it. Remembering that you yourself experienced such emotions, you realize that you are not ideal and the behavior that you condemn is also characteristic of you, although perhaps not in such an acute form.

Very often, people who criticize others for their shortcomings themselves have similar shortcomings.

Therefore, before you get annoyed by other people's actions, try to understand the person and put yourself in his place. Think about it, have you never behaved in a similar way yourself?

Speaking about the reasons that determine behavior, I was not trying to say that people are not to blame for anything, since their actions are always dictated by the state of their psyche. On the contrary, I take the position that a person himself is responsible for his actions. At this point, I spoke exclusively about understanding motives, about empathy, and not about removing responsibility from someone.

Express your feelings calmly

The main problem is always the method of communication. If you are annoyed by someone's behavior and communication style, it is time to talk honestly about what is unpleasant to you. The secret is that you need to do this as calmly as possible and without unnecessary confrontation. Such language will allow you to show your “I” convincingly and clearly.

The goal is to express unpleasant emotions without blaming your opponent. For example: “When you argue with me, I feel unfairly accused. Please provide compelling arguments to defend your position.” Be specific when expressing your dissatisfaction, because doing the opposite will not solve the problem, but will only make it worse!


Ignoring in some cases is a very effective tool. After all, when you respond to a person, you give him a reason to continue to behave in a way that annoys you. If you ignore him, then he will have no choice but to turn to someone else. In addition, such an opaque hint on your part may help him think about his behavior and draw the right conclusions.

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Your method of fighting

Not all things deserve wasting time and attention. Sometimes dealing with a toxic person is like arguing with a crying baby because it is simply pointless and not worth wasting your energy. Try to calm down yourself first. Ask yourself, will there really be pleasure and benefit in the upcoming dispute? Is it worth it?

What advantages do you have to win the situation? Think about whether the problem is situational or will it disappear only with the passage of time? In addition, the quarrelsome person can sometimes help in other ways. It is in your best interest to come to terms with its features if they bring more benefit than harm.

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Healthy Boundaries

Wouldn't it be bad if a checkpoint could be set up to prevent a troublesome employee from trespassing? Sometimes a physical barrier is not possible, but you have the right to set boundaries.

Otherwise, the person who wants to “drink your blood” will constantly pester you. Set yourself an appointment time for such people. Protect yourself not only emotionally, but also physically, by protecting yourself from frequent contact with such characters. If you know you're in an emotionally charged situation, take a deep breath and calm down before you go on a "date."

Prepare for "defense"

How to behave with an inadequate person? Realizing that soon you will once again have to deal with an outright boor, prepare yourself well for an unpleasant dialogue. Find a comfortable position. Stand or sit down so that you feel solid support.

During a conversation, express only theses supported by verified information and facts. Keep in mind the goal that you want to achieve as a result of communication. If you know that they will try to provoke you into strong emotional reactions, select an object in front of your eyes where you can look without being distracted by the aggressive gestures and facial expressions of your opponent. Fix your gaze on an object that will become a kind of support for maintaining emotional balance.

Connect with like-minded people

Don't fight alone - there are always people who will support you. If you try to cope with the “snake” yourself, it rarely ends well - it’s difficult to feel your development when such a “stopping” character puts pressure on you. Find trusted people who will help and support you.

They can judge these situations objectively and find a way to deal with the toxic person. Sometimes all we want is to be heard and understood. Once we feel cared for, we can move on. Knowing that someone is standing “behind” you, protecting you, allows you to find the strength to interact with everything around you.

Take a lenient stance

Often inadequacy is the result of envy or competition. The optimal solution in such a situation is to demonstrate a condescending, understanding and even somewhat compassionate position. It is wise to meet irrational behavior with a sympathetic eye. If there is no risk of physical aggression, the person can be patted on the back. Make your opponent feel safe. Sometimes it’s worth allowing an inadequate person to “beat” you.

Refuse to provoke an irrational person into further attacks of envy. Having ceased to subconsciously fear you, your opponent will most likely stop displaying boorish behavior. Over time, a condescending position will force a person to change his views and create the basis for improving relationships.

Learn how to disarm your opponent

Is someone teasing you and focusing on your shortcomings? Provide balance - apply pressure. Don't react to someone studying you and looking for weaknesses. This will give them superiority. Instead, flip the script on the situation and focus on them.

Create neutralization by asking constructive and detailed questions that can keep the toxic person off balance. Are they trying to ruin your work? Let them criticize to the point. Ask about the specifics and clarity of their position. Are they being bullied for no reason? Point this out to them. Let them treat you politely - and you will answer them in kind!

Determine the person's strategies

How to behave with inappropriate people? Find out the patterns according to which an aggressive opponent operates. Usually there is a whole set of factors that cause a person's ferocious messages. Internal operations are cyclical and repetitive in nature. The latter serve to unbalance the interlocutor and instill fear.

Analyze a person’s behavior during communication. Notice the moments that provoke inappropriate reactions. The correct placement of emphasis in the future will provide an opportunity to destroy the aggressor’s strategy, allow better control of the situation, and find ways to counteract.

Your happiness is in your own hands

Never let a toxic employee limit your joy or sources of pride. Don't let inappropriate comments or concerns stress you out. Nothing should overshadow your work and reduce productivity.

Recognize your accomplishments yourself—and focus only on constructive criticism. Take a moment to think about yourself - perhaps you see this flaw in yourself and are projecting it onto your opponent. This will help you understand what specifically you don't like. And remember: you are in complete control of yourself and your mental state. Stop comparing yourself to others and always remember that your self-worth must come from within.

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Reasons for rude behavior

One of the most common reasons for rude attacks on a person is his underdeveloped psychological strength. Such people are much more likely to become victims of rudeness than strong and self-confident individuals. Boors and rude people have a fairly well-developed instinct and will never get involved with someone who can give them a worthy answer.

If in front of them is a person from a different category, then why not amuse yourself and say something rude to him. Most often, the following types of people are among the offended:

  • highly cultured and brought up in old traditions;
  • having low self-esteem;
  • trying to avoid conflict situations;
  • with a high sense of guilt;
  • fearful of hurting and offending other people.

In this situation, the reaction to rudeness may be different, but first you should work on your own self-esteem and confidence so as not to be a constant victim of poorly behaved citizens. Finding inner strength will forever get rid of outside aggression, because a strong person cannot be an object of attack.

Read further: 65 phrases to respond to rudeness

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