Posts Tagged ‘dealingwithdifficultpeople’

IT’S NOT FAIR!

At one time or another, we’ve all complained that life isn’t fair. Children do it all the time: Karen, who is older by two years, is allowed to stay up later than her younger siblings. They complain to dad that they’re being treated unjustly, not realizing that at the same age her bedtime was thirty minutes earlier. As adults, we attribute this behavior to immaturity and expect that as children grow and develop this rationale will make way for a more judicious way of thinking . Sadly, many people carry this mind-set with them well into adulthood. Two of my favorite comedians from years back, Tom and Dick Smothers, had a standing skit where one grumbled that “Mom always liked you best!”, indicating a biased favoritism. On stage, this is entertaining. In real life, it’s unflattering and harmful.

Gary Zukov, NY Times bestselling author of The Seat of the Soul, says that the most important thing we have are our belief systems. Our entire lives are built upon them and if inaccurate we struggle and suffer. Believing that life was designed to be fair and balanced is a faulty tenet. When we see an perceived injustice we seek to recreate rightfulness. When it is not forthcoming, we feel frustrated and discriminated against. “I should have gotten that promotion, not the boss’s son. I’ve been here longer. That’s not fair!”

In our relationships, especially the close, personal or intimate ones, this kind of mindset can prove devastating. There are those who actually keep score: “I helped you when you needed it. Now you should give me a hand as well. That’s only right.” “I paid for our last evening out. Now it’s your turn.” In an attempt to keep things equitable, we manipulate the other party into feeling guilty should they decline our request. Seeking equality is a futile endeavor – it simply does not exist in an imperfect world inhabited by imperfect human beings. Attempting to do so is one of the quickest ways to build anger and resentment – toxic ingredients capable of destroying lives.

Life isn’t fair yet it is perfectly just. The lyrics to a Colin Raye song state that “You don’t always get what you want, you get what you need.” If we subscribe to this premise, which I do, then life is exactly what we need it to be. Each experience, each individual, each loss, each success is exactly what is necessary for us to fulfill our Divine Destiny, our Dharma (as Wayne Dyer calls it). If my child wants to be a great artist, I provide them with the proper canvases, brushes, and paints. If my son has a sprained ankle, I get him crutches. Identical? No. Fair? Yes. Each is receiving exactly what they need in that moment for their own good. Fair does not mean the same – it means having equal value. We become angry in part because we mistakenly assign random values to events and then compare what each of us has.

One of our greatest challenges lies in realizing that we are not meant to be treated alike but that the Universe, in all of its infinite wisdom, always provides exactly what we are meant to have for our higher good and that each experience has equal value.

What then is the solution to avoiding the bitterness and resentment assigned to the belief that life should be fair?

1. Remember that if life were perfectly balanced we would learn nothing: patience, appreciation, determination, forgiveness, and much more.

2. Celebrate the successes of others, extend compassion for their losses regardless of where you are in life, knowing that at the precise moment it is needed each will receive what they are intended to have.

3. Keep in mind that every single experience, no matter how insignificant, no matter how painful or frightening plays a unique role in fulfilling our Divine Destiny – which is always to bring us closer to God.

4. Don’t compare or keep score. One never fully realizes the challenges others are struggling with. Focus only on addressing and learning from your own. Failure to do so leads to self-pity, victimization, misery, and suffering.

5. Trust that God’s love for you always directs you to your highest good. Be at peace with your life. You are in good hands, the best hands, with God.

Life may not appear to be fair but it is always unbiased. Each of us is given exactly what we need to assist us in our spiritual growth and to bring us into a more intimate relationship with our Lord. Sounds pretty just to me.

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HOW TO EFFORTLESSLY WIN WHEN ARGUING

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if every time we disagreed with someone we could actually win when arguing? For many, disagreements are viewed as a battle of intelligence between two opposing forces. Each having what they believe to be a strong and valid position on a topic, they engage in verbal and intellectual warfare determined to prove themselves right and their opponent wrong. Whether through the use of reliable facts, the support and validation of others, or a comparison of educational or intellectual levels, some people are willing to use whatever means necessary to prove their superiority over the other. A battle of egos can prove destructive yet short of conceding in defeat or threatening the other party to get them back down, is there any way a person can win when arguing? Actually, there are several options.

In any discussion each party begins by presenting their unique position on a topic. Both are passionate about the validity of their argument and after some time it becomes evident that neither is willing to budge. In order to win, you can choose one of the following options:

#1. Neutralize: The popular cliché, “Agree to disagree” is actually a valid approach to take. By realizing that continually debating what appears to be a no-win situation, you can chose to simply let the disagreement exist. Graciously allowing the other person the right to their own beliefs can stop any damage from occurring as a result of two highly charged egos continuing in a heated debate. Simply recognize that each party has the same rights as the other in terms of what they believe to be valid. Respect that and neutralize the tension by graciously stating that you’re intention is not to convince the other person that their perspective is wrong (even if you believe it is) and that you are fine with those who do not share your point of view. Express your sentiments in a non-condescending manner and state that it might be best to put this issue to rest. Choose a less divisive subject to talk about or move on to another activity. Being respectful is always a win.

#2. Walk Away: People can become very irate when others don’t share their beliefs concerning subjects they are passionate about. After making a sincere effort to have a rational discussion with them, it become apparent that they are becoming even more hostile and defensive. Recognizing when one is in an unhealthy, stressful or even potentially dangerous situation, removing yourself is a wise choice. The preservation of one’s emotional and physical safety must always be a priority. Walking away prevents either side from a possible meltdown or saying or doing something regrettable. Sometimes, in the heat of an argument, one can make false accusations or assumptions, only fueling the fire and possibly causing harm. Disengaging is a win.
Keep in mind, too, that once an individual closes their mind, any further discussion is futile and any possible progress is squelched. A mind is like a parachute: both only work when open. Walking away is not a sign of defeat but rather one of self-preservation and intelligence.

#3. Concede: Giving in in no way implies that you are agreeing with the other party if in fact you still hold fast to your own beliefs. By conceding I mean to simply acknowledge their position as equally as valid to them as yours is to you. With true respect and sincerity, express that you respect their point of view. Period. Avoid needing to point out that you still disagree with them. Conclude with a statement such as, “Yes, I understand where you are coming from.” Then move on to another activity. Integrity is a win.

#4. Reverse: Occasionally in an oppositional debate, one party has a change of heart. They realize that perhaps their way of thinking was somewhat skewed; that perhaps the other person has made some valid points. There is no shame or weakness in reversing one’s position whether entirely or partially. If this is the case and you have come to that realization, openly acknowledge the validity of what the other has shared. Let them know that as a result of this exchange, you have a new, better, or deeper understanding of the topic. Admit that you have found clarity in their position and are grateful for them sharing their knowledge with you. Courage is a win.

#5. Reversal #2: On occasion, the other party may have an ah-ha moment where they realize that what you have been saying suddenly makes more sense to them. They may now realize that their perspective was somewhat inaccurate or that there can be more than one valid argument for the same topic. However, it is difficult for many to openly admit this as there is typically concern of being embarrassed, ridiculed, scolded, make fun of, and so on. In this instance, how you handle yourself is critical. Always be gracious. Show your appreciation for their willingness to listen to your thoughts. Compliment them on their willingness to see things from a new perspective. Keep it light: make reference to a time when you were insistent on an issue only to realize you had made a serious error in judgment or came to realize that the opposing position was actually more sensible. Never embarrass, humiliate, degrade, criticize or make fun of the other person. Refrain from making such comments as “See, I told you so!” or “I told you I was right!” Always treat them with respect and allow them to leave with their dignity intact. Compassion and sensitivity are wins.

Disagreements can open doors to immense personal growth when both sides remain open minded and fair, eager to learn from the opposing side. But they can also become volatile and dangerous when egos control our decisions. One of mankind’s greatest needs is to be heard and acknowledged, not necessarily to have others agree with them. Something as simple as a acknowledgment can be enough to reassure the other party that you are not the enemy but rather an ally supporting their individuality. This enables them to remain calm and relaxed as they trust that you will be fair and respectful of them at all times.

People want to be their own person and some clearly march to the beat of a different drummer. It is an admirable quality that one is confident enough not to be threatened by those who oppose their views. So when discord arises, Disagree with Dignity; Attack the Issues not the Individual.
Remember, I stated that you would win when arguing, not win the argument. There is a critical distinction between the two and when understood you will ultimately emerge victorious, a winner, in the sense that you have maintained your integrity, preserved the dignity of the other person, prohibited stress from manifesting, and safeguarded the integrity of the relationship.

Q: “Disagree with Dignity; Attack the Issues not the Individual.”

Order The Secret Side of Anger, Second Edition or The Great Truth @ http://www.pfeifferpowerseminars.com/pps1-products.html

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10 WAYS TO STOP PEOPLE FROM ANNOYING YOU

They’re like mosquitoes on a hot summer night – those irritating and annoying people. They can be found anywhere from our families or coworkers to drivers on the roadways to complete strangers we encounter while on vacation. Their quirky behaviors and annoying habits can ruin our day. Other than blow up, walk away, or simply endure their lack of sensitivity towards others, we often feel powerless to do anything about it. Uncle Joe who thinks he knows everything, a spouse who is chronically late for even the most important events, people who interrupt or bite their nails or cannot complete a sentence without saying “um” a gazillion times – augh! They drive us crazy!

Being annoyed is the mildest form of anger and subsequently takes the least amount of effort to address. If left unresolved it can easily progress to anger, then aggression (the 3 A’s of Anger, as I refer to them – annoyed, angry, aggressive), each becoming more intense in nature. What is it about those people that make them so irritating and perhaps more importantly, what can we do to get them to stop? Actually, the problem isn’t with them at all. Feeling annoyed is a state of mind, an emotion, and all emotions originate in our thoughts. While their actions may be less than what we consider ideal, we choose how we interpret them, feel about them, as well as how we react.

There are several reasons why other people’s behaviors bother us, such as when they behave in ways that are different than ours or what we deem to be normal or appropriate. It’s easy to place labels and judgments on others and the moment we do so we experience feelings about them. We compare their behavior to our own: “I would never do that” or to others: “No one else behaves that way.” And since our behavior is acceptable to us then the logical conclusion is that there must be something inherently wrong with theirs. We view their actions as flawed.

When others don’t live up to our expectations of what we believe they should or should not be doing or who they should or should not be, we feel disappointed, uncomfortable, or concerned about their well-being or perhaps about our own welfare within the context of the relationship. Opposing belief systems, as well as behaviors, lend cause for discomfort and concern. A law firm comprised of three generations of attorneys finds a rebel grandchild who chooses to start a rock band instead of continuing a long-established family tradition. The older generation cannot comprehend why anyone in their right mind would reject a foolproof career choice for one of little certainty. They cannot discuss any aspect of it without becoming agitated and annoyed.

In some instances, people will try to manipulate the other party into changing their ways with such statements as “Why can’t you be more like your sister/me/everyone else?” Or “There’s something wrong with people who act the way you do. You need to get some help.” Other times they may ban certain subjects from discussion or may even choose to disengage with the bothersome individual.
Humans, by their very nature, do not feel comfortable with those who are different. We tend to date the same kinds of people and socialize with those we share common interests with. When someone enters our world who has even the slightest quirkiness we are quick to criticize. We feel uncomfortable, out of our element, and want them to conform to our standards in order that we may feel at ease. Keep in mind, however, that annoying people are not the problem. Problems only exist in the mind. They do not view themselves nor their beliefs or behaviors as problematic. They are at peace with them. It is only the outsider, you or I, that labels it a problem. Therefore, the problem is not them but with us. You and I have the problem and likewise are the only ones who can institute a solution. Keep in mind, too, that unless an attitude or behavior is illegal, immoral, or a threat to my health or well-being, I have no right to ask or expect anyone to change anything about themselves. Just as I expect others to accept me as I am, so must I be willing to do the same first.

So how then do you stop someone from annoying you? Below are some suggestions in no particular order:
1. Remember that being annoyed is a personal choice. No one can make you feel anything. All emotions originate in the mind. Change your perception (thoughts) about them and the feelings will change accordingly.

2. Remove all expectations of how people should be or act. Never should on anyone. People are not here to live up to your expectations. Respect them enough to give them the freedom to be who they are.

3. Life is meant to unfold naturally. You can force a rose to bloom in a greenhouse in winter but it will not survive the harsh conditions of its natural environment. So it is with people: each has to grow and bloom in their own time and way. Let go and let God. It’s all in His hands.

4. Make light of the situation but do not make fun of it or the individual. Interject humor to diffuse your exasperation for your own sense of well-being. Put things into perspective. Remember my 10 year rule: if I won’t remember it or it won’t matter in 10 years then it’s not that important.

5. Be compassionate if the situation warrants it. Sometimes those who have odd behaviors are struggling with deep rooted personal issues.

6. Be understanding. Everyone journeys through life in their own time and way. Every experience and choice they make has purpose and value to them. It is all a necessary part of their evolutionary process.

7.Stay out of their business and focus your attention on your own beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors. “Wherever you direct your energy is where change will occur.” You cannot change others; the only change you can initiate is within. Let go of the need to fix or change anyone other than yourself.
8. If their behavior puts you at risk, speak with them and set some reasonable boundaries. Keep in mind that they must be fair and realistic with equal consideration for all parties.

9. Be aware of your own behavior and how may be impacting others. It is not only the other person who can prove to be irritating.

10. Understand that every person who enters our life, every experience we have, no matter how bothersome we may think it is, has purpose and value. Learn to trust in God. Find the significance in everyone and everything. In that way, rather than being annoyed, you can appreciate the experience and find inner peace and acceptance.
In conclusion, annoyance is the mildest form of anger and if left unaddressed can lead to more serious conditions. Never allow small insignificant irritations to rob you of your joy and tranquility. Being annoyed at someone is a matter of judgment. “Judge not lest ye be judged.” Once aware, we must be more diligent in allowing others to simply be. “It is what it is” is a mantra that helps to restore the serenity that slips away when we allow other people to bother us. We cannot change how others behave but we can certainly, and must, determine how we allow them to impact us. Inner peace matters most.

Order The Secret Side of Anger, Second Edition or The Great Truth @ http://www.pfeifferpowerseminars.com/pps1-products.html

Listen to past shows on iHeart Radio @ http://ow.ly/OADTf
Listen to my newest iHeart Radio show, BETWEEN YOU AND GOD, @ http://ow.ly/OADJK
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