How to deal with people that give you a hard time

Written by tyran dewalt
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How to deal with people that give you a hard time
People who give you a hard time are really crying out for help. (Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Everyone deals with people that are hard to deal with from time to time. Defensiveness is ineffective when dealing with difficult people, according to Psychology Today. This simply means that you have to avoid reflexive behaviour and learn to diffuse the tactics of the person you are dealing with. People who lash out at others are often projecting their own personal issues. Exercise patience, shrewdness and understanding when dealing with aggressive people.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Do not take the offensive behaviour and actions of someone else personally. This is especially important if you are dealing with someone difficult at work, because it could affect your performance. Do not fight or play games. It will only give the person more ammunition to pester you. Let your boss know exactly what is happening.

  2. 2

    Show assertiveness, but do not fight. His intentions are to get a reaction out of you, but if you show that you are unmoved by his tactics, he will lose interest. Allow him to run out of steam when he is attempting to provoke you. Assert that you are not willing to put up with his behaviour, looking him directly in the eye with a serious tone of voice.

  3. 3

    Question the intentions of the remarks or the behaviour she directs to you. Many difficult people make remarks, insults or innuendos in a sarcastic manner. Ask her why she made the statement she made. This will make her question her own intentions, which will probably reduce the chances of her hurtful words or behaviours in the future. If you allow her to make negative statements toward you without responding, she'll feel like she can get away with it.

  4. 4

    Remain positive when dealing with someone who is a constant complainer. Complainers can make the most positive day seem bleak and gloomy. When someone makes statements full of despair, respond with positivity. It could be that she is going through a rough patch in her life, and your upbeat comments and attitude could help bring her out of the trenches.

  5. 5

    Console the person. Oftentimes, people who are hard to deal with are not aware of how their behaviour is impacting the people around them. This could result from issues at home, frustration at work or emotional trauma. Put yourself in his shoes by responding with a statement, such as, "It seems like you're having a difficult time, and I know exactly how you feel." This may encourage him to drop his guard and open up about what is bothering him.

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