Wednesday, March 6, 2019

How to Respond to a Complainer

ComplainerAsk some folks how they’re doing, and they’ll tell you they’re sick and tired of being sick and tired. This can be a completely reasonable answer because we all have times when we feel the same way. However, some have a pattern of going on and on about their problems every time you see them.

We’ve all met people who complain constantly about physical problems or other things going wrong in their lives. They seem to believe they’re magnets for misfortune and nothing is ever positive. How should you handle it when someone has a habit of complaining to you?

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Do You Know An Emotional Vampire?

Emotional VampireIt’s that time again – time for little ghouls and goblins, superheroes and princesses to swarm into the neighborhood and charm you into giving them some candy. You may even see a miniature Count Dracula looking like he’s checking out your jugular vein.

Halloween and trick or treating is all in good fun, but I’m wondering if some time in your life you’ve known a warm-blooded vampire – an Emotional Vampire, that is. You might recognize them as someone you’re afraid to ask, “How are you?” because you suspect they’ll overflow with more gory details than you want to know.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Do You Struggle with Difficult People?

Difficult people are everywhere. You can find them at work, in your neighborhood, at the local store, in government offices, in customer services and even in your own home. Now, to be honest, we can all be difficult at times, but today I’m talking about what I refer to as chronically difficult people – the people whose behavior is often obnoxious, rude, aggressive and just plain frustrating. In other words, their behavior is predictable… predictably difficult!

Difficult People

Difficult people come in a variety of styles with behavior patterns that fit some classic categories. The Tanks bully their way through every situation, steamrolling anyone who stands in their way without considering how others feel. The Exploders use “shock and awe” to get their way by blowing up so others learn to tiptoe around them or give in to prevent an angry outburst. The Know-it-All has to answer every comment and conversation with information designed to make themselves look better. The Super-Agreeable Charmers are those people who are the first to volunteer and make commitments, and then often don’t deliver (because nobody could keep as many promises as they make) which leaves everyone else stuck with more responsibility or unmet expectations. The Clams use silence as a powerful weapon to control people who are trying to gain consensus or move forward with ideas. The Indecisives can stymie negotiations and progress with their wavering and worry. The Wet Blankets can suck the fun out of anything with their negative attitudes and complaining. The Snipers wield a double-edged sword of appearing to agree and support, while secretly sabotaging and demeaning.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Resolving a Bad Relationship at Work

The average full-time worker with two weeks of annual vacation spends up to 250 days or 2,000 hours each year on the job.  Unfortunately, many employees spend this time interacting with co-workers they don’t get along with, making their work situation almost intolerable.

If you have a problem with a co-worker and you’re growing weary, don’t despair.  Although you can’t guarantee cooperation from the other party, there are some practical things you can do in an effort to turn the relationship around.  Review the tips below to see how you can confront bad work relationships.

1.  Take a good look at your own attitude and behavior first.

Before you complain or point a finger at your co-worker, take an honest look at how you might be contributing to the problem.  Are you letting your feelings make you snappy, over-sensitive, jealous or uncooperative?  Addressing your own negative attitude or behavior can often help decrease the distress brought on by the bad relationship and help you to address the only thing you really have control over – you!

2.  Stop the negative talk about your co-worker.

If you keep talking about the person you have a problem with you run the risk of being labeled as a whiner, complainer or troublemaker.  Gossip or other talk that criticizes or belittles your co-worker also has a way of coming back around and biting you where it hurts.  Take the high road and resist the temptation to spread the problem around the office.

3.  Keep your emotions in check.

Overreacting to a problem often results in a loss of your credibility and can diminish the significance of your complaint.  Make sure you are maintaining emotional balance in your own life by not allowing your frustration to turn into anger and your anger into bitterness.  Use