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One final blog on dealing with difficult people

Best-laid plans -- between a great 2 weeks at the beach, a broken laptop screen (I got a replacement and fixed it) and now a bout with kidney stones, I will get to executive presence next month. That's fine, as I had a couple of interactions that made me realize this topic needed a bit more coaching focus.

First, I had a client who assured me several times that he was fine with his former boss and respected her and that they found a way to work together . . . but the way he kept talking about her it was clear that he was not over the way she treated him. Then I dealt with someone else who seems so fixated on the past transgressions of someone in her life -- real and imagined -- that she ended up having to talk about it over and over. In both cases, there seemed no chance for resolution without letting go.

Don't let someone rent space in your head for free.

In both cases, there was a lot of "she clearly felt this way" or "I know why he did that" and honestly, it made me sad. I've been there. I've bee so mad at someone and feeling like I was wronged that I continued to focus on the person and creating stories about what he thought and why he did things. It took far too long to let go, though the quote above is one I applied until it stuck.

There is another quote I like, which according to the Internet has many "original" mothers and fathers.

You would worry a lot less about what people think of you if you realized how seldom they do.

I like this one a lot. It's a good reminder that most people are so busy dealing with their own stuff that you never cross their minds. I mostly don't have any idea what anyone else is thinking or going through. Sadly, I am also like not the center of their universe or even their stray thoughts. Everyone, even bad bosses and jerky co-workers and irritating neighbors is busy living his or her own life. If s/he is spending any of their precious time on earth looking for ways to do you wrong. that is just sad for them. Pity them and then pay them no further mind. Positive thoughts will overcome negative ones. We know that, even if we don't always act like it.

Just wanted to get this off my chest and clear the decks for next month.

Tom