Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Dealing With Mean People Who Threaten Your Success

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While traveling the road to success, we come across many types of people. Some of them are supportive and nice, others help us get where we want to go. Unfortunately, there are also people who are none of the above. These folks are just downright mean. They are negative, spiteful, and even rude.
Each of us has encountered someone mean on certain days.

Crossing paths with just one of these people can put a damper on the day or start the week off on a bad note. Effects can be just as detrimental when the person is a stranger and sometimes these meanies seem to be everywhere we turn. We often wonder why these people say what they think and behave the way they do.

 If these individuals are within our personal or professional circles, we may try to counsel them. While many people realize that good interpersonal skills are the common thread in successful careers and relationships, most of them believe that their people skills are excellent when this is not the case. However, no matter what we say or do we cannot change someone else. We cannot make a mean person be nice.

Though we are unable to control others, we can control our thoughts and behavior. When it comes to mean people, we should exercise that form of control by refusing to accept their actions. When people act mean, they do not usually have personal intentions toward us. They are merely expressing their issues in an unproductive (and unwelcome) way. Maybe they have a quick temper or maybe they were disciplined for something they did at work…this behavior has many triggers but we are not usually the cause.

How should we deal with people who are mean? By not dealing with them! We should choose not to receive and take offense at their words or actions. Even if the person is trying to offend, attack, or anger us, we are not required to deal with it and we most certainly do not need to accept their offense. By taking offense, we open ourselves to stress, frustration, and other things that hurt our lives. Not to mention it will do nothing good for our productivity or relationships.

People are people and each one of them deserves our respect. Mean people usually talk a good game but are not really that bad. By refusing to take offense to them, we let the wind out of their sails. In the scheme of life, encounters with these individuals are insignificant. We make them more important when we react in negative ways.

Whether we are trying to improve our family or professional relationships, advance our careers, or create six figure income with our own businesses, we may encounter mean people. We will be much better off if we do not deal with them. Instead, we should respect their right to behave as they do, hope that they will change, and refuse to take offense at their actions while we work toward our potential.

*Photo Courtesy of John Fischer via Creative Commons License

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