If you’ve ever driven through rush-hour traffic or waded through a packed store, you’re well aware that nasty individuals can be found just about anywhere these days. It doesn’t matter if it’s an unpleasant comment or a dismissive attitude; rudeness is all around. This negativity has a way of rubbing off on us all too often.
Despite the fact that you have no influence over another person’s behavior, you do not want to be provoked by someone’s ill-mannered attitude. So, what are your options?
There are several tried and tested strategies that clever people use to effectively deal with nasty people, whether it’s coming from an unfriendly stranger, a grumpy coworker, or a snappish buddy when confronted with poisonous behavior.
1. Realize that rudeness is nothing new
Rudeness appears to be ingrained in human nature. We’ve been whining about it since the dawn of time — Plato is credited with ranting about impolite and ill-mannered teenagers in his Republic. Many people might easily fall into the habit of being rude to others. The significance of offering kindness, sympathy, and understanding to others is something that we frequently neglect or forget.
Rude behavior is contagious: it has a tendency to elicit additional unpleasant behavior. When we realize that these negative behaviors are affecting our productivity, happiness, and health, we can see how important it is to put a stop to them and take action. Rudeness is nothing new, but it doesn’t mean we have to keep up with the same old pattern of rudeness all the time.
2. Put an end to the downward spiral of rudeness
Rude behavior has the potential to spread like a disease if you let it to. One act of rudeness can easily spiral out of control, resulting in a chain reaction of further impolite behaviors, as well as the spread of nasty tempers and terrible behavior.
It’s not difficult to comprehend how this occurs. When a disrespectful driver cuts you off in the middle of the road on your way to work, you become irritated and furious. When you find yourself snapping at coworkers for no apparent reason, you take those unpleasant feelings out on them and on your office mates. Your coworkers become irritable and nasty to others as a result of their dissatisfaction. That’s how it goes.
You have the ability to put a stop to this cycle of nasty behavior. It is possible to soften rudeness with kindness if you have a little sensitivity.
3. Don’t take insults or unpleasant behavior personally
In order to break the cycle of rudeness, the first step is to quit taking disrespectful behavior personally. There are days when the world appears to be hammering us down, and we all experience them. It’s all too tempting to vent your frustrations on the rest of the world, which really means venting your frustrations on the person closest to you.
This happens to all of us at some point, and understanding that the offending party may simply be having a poor day might help to put things in perspective. It’s possible that they were coping with a challenging situation at the time you happened to walk into their line of fire. In many cases, you can break the cycle of rudeness by refraining from responding to rude behavior with your own negativity.
4. Show kindness in the face of harshness
Make sure you don’t respond in kind to someone who is being nasty to you. Maintaining a cheerful and positive attitude is one of the most effective methods to defuse rude and negative conduct. In this way, the other person has an opportunity to cool down and change their behavior to match yours. Kindness may be a good antidote to rudeness when used appropriately.
The act of extending kindness to someone who is being rude or insulting to others can be incredibly difficult to accomplish. However, by establishing a calm and well-mannered example, you might encourage others to follow your example.. You can be proud of yourself if this doesn’t work because you didn’t reduce your standards or introduce your own nasty behavior into the mix. You, on the other hand, kept your composure.
5. Make light of a tough situation by using comedy
A nasty and difficult individual can cause tension and anxiety in themselves and in those around them by being difficult and rude. Please keep in mind that they are most likely acting rudely because they are angry or disturbed about anything they are experiencing. Comedy can provide a distraction and alleviate the tension, allowing everyone to laugh off the situation at hand.
In order to accomplish this, you need find a method to laugh about a common scenario or make light of a shared experience that everyone can connect to. Self-deprecating humor can be both entertaining and disarming. Finding a method to inject a little levity into a situation where someone is feeling down may be just what everyone needs to press the reset button and start over on a more positive note.
6. Call the individual out on his or her actions
Alternatively, you can simply call them out on their rudeness and request that they refrain from continuing their behavior. In the case of someone you can’t get away from who is habitually nasty to you, you need to deal with the situation immediately. There is no need for you to put up with continuous abuse from anyone. Anyone who treats you disrespectfully should never be tolerated.
Engage in a discussion about what is taking place. If someone knows how harmful his or her behaviors are to you, does he or she take anything to stop it? Perhaps the individual is completely unaware of how disrespectful he or she is being. By making the other person aware of the situation, he or she will have an opportunity to apologize and try to be more courteous.
7. Do not exacerbate the situation
You may be tempted to lash out at someone who has irritated you in the past. But keep in mind that you (and only you) are in command of your own life. Make the decision not to give in to drama. No matter how another person behaves, you are responsible for your own actions, just as they will be responsible for theirs.
Maintain your composure. If you have been upset by someone, take a big breath and allow yourself some room to settle down. Remember that you are under no obligation to lower yourself to their level, and that doing so will almost certainly make the situation worse. Maintain your dignity and keep your head above the waterline.
8. Demonstrate compassion and sympathy
Demonstrating empathy demands you to make a genuine effort to understand why the other person is being disrespectful. Someone can be coping with a terrible circumstance in their personal life, or they might be overwhelmed by the number of deadlines building up at their place of employment. Find a way to demonstrate to them that you understand and care about what they are going through so that they feel less alone in their troubles.
If you know someone who is going through a difficult moment, let them know that you sympathize with them. Don’t pass judgment on them because they are having a poor day or because they are snapping at others. You might be able to find a way to remark that you’ve had difficult days as well and that you can empathize to how the other person feels.
If someone is experiencing a brief slip in manners, this may assist the individual in becoming more aware of their undesirable behavior. If the person becomes more agitated, simply let it go. There’s nothing you can do to make someone behave in a certain way.
9. Act as a positive role model
People act in a variety of ways for a variety of reasons that are hidden from view. Take note of those who use impolite behavior as a means of asserting their authority or showcasing their dominance. They may be attempting to elicit a negative response from you in order to make you look terrible. Keep your cool and don’t give them the satisfaction of seeing you grow furious.
Being a good role model and treating everyone with justice, kindness and empathy demonstrates the kind of behavior you expect from others in your immediate environment. If they are unable to reciprocate with the same level of civility, it may be necessary to solicit the assistance of others.
10. Stay away from the impolite individual
When everything else fails, remember that it’s sometimes preferable to simply walk away from the situation. In the event you have done everything you can in order to bring the person’s actions to the person’s attention, and you have attempted to be kind and empathic, it is possible that the person is simply unable of treating you (and others) with civility and good manners.
By avoiding rude people on a regular basis, you remove them from your social circle and reduce the number of targets for them to strike out at. In addition, the absence of an audience will defuse the situation. If everyone in their immediate vicinity begins to give them a wide berth, perhaps this will serve as a wake-up call. And if it doesn’t, it will at the very least make everyone else’s day a little better.