Some people are as abrasive as sandpaper rubbed across your face.
Someone will always disagree with what you are doing and how you are doing it. There will always be people who don’t like your viewpoint, your actions, your leadership style, how you spend your money or even how you live your life. The worst part is that these people are most likely to be your family members or coworkers, and they are just plain annoying.
It’s easy to get upset with others for not understanding. You want to fight with them, persuade them to see it your way, look down on them or rally others against them. These efforts will only deplete your energy.
Here are a few ways to deal with those people who annoy you:
>> Realize that annoying people are inevitable. Not everyone will resonate with you and it’s wise to remember that annoying people are simply part of life. Use them as a reminder to be grateful for those whom you love spending time with.
>> Stop your thoughts from spiraling. When someone is really getting under our skin, we tend to think extensively about all the ways they inconvenience us and how irritating they are. Before you know it, you’re just waiting for them to do the next annoying thing that will throw you over the edge. Make it a point to stop perpetuating the negative cycle. Put your focus on something, or someone else that’s a positive force in your situation.
>> Remember that you’re not a mind reader. Stop creating stories in your head as to why someone is “doing something” to you. “She’s trying to get attention.” “He thinks I’m stupid.” “He’s stalling just so I will be late.” The reality is that you don’t know any of these things for certain, and if you think negatively, you’ll only get more irritated.
>> Remind yourself that people can’t read your mind either. Most of the time annoying people don’t know they are annoying, and some people won’t know you don’t like something they are doing unless you tell them. Perhaps you can gracefully bring it up.
>> Don’t expect that people will behave a certain way. You can’t expect people to be exactly like you. You can’t expect them to walk at your pace, be quiet when you don’t want to be spoken to, arrive at the time that works best for you or progress at the same pace you do. You just can’t expect people to behave the exact way you want them to.
>> Most importantly, you can’t change others. We know this, but it’s helpful to remind ourselves from time to time — especially when you are feeling irritated — that you can only change yourself.
When you look in the mirror to brush your hair, you don’t try to brush the hair of the reflection, you brush the hair on your head. Trying to change someone else instead of focusing on yourself is just as futile.
Alice Inoue is the founder of Happiness U. Visit yourhappinessu.com.