The very first step of “how to deal with impossible people” is one that most of us forget.
Answer the question: Is this something I want or need to do?
- Is this “impossible person” someone you have to deal with?
If the answer is yes, then continue reading.
If the answer is no, congratulations, problem averted! Take a deep breath and move on.
Dealing with impossible people has a surprisingly simple solution. It’s just four letters long:
The best way to deal with impossible people is to love them.
(Of course you don’t have to do this — you can continue to do what you’ve been doing up until now — but I can assure you that love really is the best answer.)
You can do it
Realize that it is possible to love impossible people.
Others have accomplished this. Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama are both wonderful examples of people have chosen to love impossible people. And you can choose to do it too.
Really. You can love let yourself love your impossible person.
It isn’t easy
Understand that loving impossible people isn’t easy. It isn’t easy to get yourself into a mindset that allows you to want to do something for an impossible person — all the more so when you’re certain they wouldn’t do a simple kindness for you.
Here’s a little tip: When you’re dealing with an impossible person and you think you’ve found a simple solution, you are probably mistaken.
Love — actively love — the impossible person.
Loving is never something that you can do from the sidelines. Simply telling a person that you love them doesn’t compare with showing it. You’ve got to take action.
Impossible people want and crave attention. They need validation in order to prove to themselves that they count. That is why dismissing them, their contributions, and/or their opinions usually causes more problems in the end.
Don’t ignore or give advice.
Ignoring isn’t loving. Pretending another human being doesn’t exist robs them of their humanity. It’s cruel.
Giving unsolicited advice isn’t loving. To an impossible person, your advice — no matter how well intentioned — is interpreted as an attack. Impossible people want to be seen for who they are, not for who you want them to be.
Remember that impossible person from the beginning of this exercise? Now think of three things you could do to show that you love him or her.
Do one of those things. See what happens.
- It’s not necessary to agree with the impossible person in your life, but you do need to see things through their eyes, at least for a little while.
- Dealing with impossible people means taking yourself out of the equation. (Even though our egos usually doesn’t care for this.) Making it all about another person is not easy for most of us, but it is required in order to be successful in dealing with impossible people.
- Believe it or not, love is all you need.
#wisdom_biscuit: Be love. (Even to the annoying people.)