A frequent source of conflict is others not behaving as you think they should. It can be infuriating and a huge cause of stress. Many of us set about trying hard to change the other person, or get in a huff about how unreasonable they are. Does this sound familiar?
How can you change others? Well, the simple answer is: you can’t really. Ideally, we would talk to the other party and come to an agreement; but this is not always possible. How can you cope when all efforts to reach an understanding or compromise have come to nothing? The most effective way is to change our mindset.
While we do not have the power within us to change others, we do have the power to change how we feel about them or their actions. This reprogramming of thought patterns, triggers and reactions is one of the things I find most exciting in coaching. It is a key tool in reducing stress and helping people move forward.
Here are a few tips to help you reframe situations that are causing you stress:
Step back and take a bird’s eye view of the situation
It may well be that with a bit of distance you are able to understand the other person’s behaviour or point of view more clearly. Their behaviour could be coming from a place of pain or unhappiness. Maybe they don’t know how to express themselves clearly.
Ask yourself if your reaction is helpful
Is your anger or stress at the situation causing you sleepless nights; or is dwelling on the situation having an adverse effect on other areas of your life? You will never get this time back, so try to use it more positively.
Be proud of your behaviour
Just because others are acting infuriatingly or aggressively towards you, does not mean that you must react in the same way.
Do not give the other person the power to make you feel bad
You are in control of how you feel about any situation. Remember to choose how it affects you. You must look after yourself.
Listen to their point of view
See if it has any merits. Maybe there are things that you have not considered, which change your understanding of the situation.
Stand your ground
You have a right to say no, not to agree with others and you also have a right to not be coerced into something that you don’t want to do, or makes you uncomfortable. However, respect other people’s right to a different opinion or way of doing things.
Set yourself clear boundaries
It is okay not to have to see people who cause you stress, or limit the amount of time you spend with them, whoever they are. Remember you are allowed to say no.
Take yourself out of the situation
If this is not physically possible, take a few deep breaths to reset mentally.
It is important to identify the difference between what we can and can’t change. Remember, we do have the power to change how we feel about others or their actions, even if we cannot change the person.
I'm a Personal Coach who loves finding out about what makes people tick and helping them to make the changes necessary to get to where they want to go so they can thrive.