Difficult people - ya gotta love em! Or not. Whether you do or don't, it's a fact of life that they are all around us - in our families, places of employment, communities, social events, and everywhere else. For whatever reasons, we all have personal issues that cause us to behave in ways others may find offensive, challenging or just plain problematic. It is our responsibility to pay close attention not to the other person's behavior but to our own, making sure we are not the one sporting the "Hi, my name is Ob Noxious" name tag.

Having ascertained that you are free from fault (in this regard only), short of severing future contact with the individual, how can one deal with someone who is challenging? Here are a few tips that will make interacting with them easier:

1. Ask yourself, "How important is this person to me at this moment?" Being careful not to devalue them, certain people have greater or lesser significance in our lives. My sister, for instance, matters more to me than a sales clerk in Macy's. If the party in question does not hold great regard in your life, are you willing to simply let the issue slide and walk away?
2. How important is this issue? Will it matter ten years from now? Again, if not, let it go. It is not worth your time and effort.
3. Can you accept the person as they are? "That's just the way Uncle Joe is. He's never going to change." If you do, you must be at peace with him/her so as not to become resentful and angry later on.
4. Can I change my perception of this person? Instead of "She is so controlling!", can I see her as insecure? A less judgmental observation allows me to interact with her in a less critical manner.
5. If the party is an important part of my life, I need to set boundaries and guidelines in our relationship to ensure it is as reasonably healthy as possible for all parties.
6. Establish a common ground with them, identify something you both have in common. By doing so, this allows both parties to feel a certain connection and increases the levels of understanding and trust between them.
7. Build trust. Showing genuine interest and concern in them eases their anxieties and fears, allowing them to feel more comfortable in your presence. Once achieved, they will most likely become more cooperative with you.
8. Bring out the best in them. Avoid allowing their bad behavior to influence how you behave. Find some goodness and focus on that.
9. Remember to be fair and open-minded to what they say, believe, and do. Refrain from criticism and judgments, employing understanding and compassion instead.
10. Some of our greatest gifts in life have been the most difficult people who cross our paths. View them as an important teacher who is enabling you to learn and grow. See them as the true blessings they are.

While there is much to learn from encountering those who present the greatest challenges to us, it is not imperative that we keep them in our lives. Those who are determined to continue inflicting chaos upon us may be gently released from our lives. We are under no obligation to allow anyone to disrupt our serenity and joy. Wish them well and send them on their way.

To order a copy of The Secret Side of Anger or The Great Truth visit http://www.pfeifferpowerseminars.com/pps1-products.html

Author's Bio: 

Janet Pfeiffer, international inspirational speaker and award-winning author has appeared on CNN, Lifetime, ABC News, The 700 Club, NBC News, Fox News, The Harvest Show, Celebration, TruTV and many others. She’s been a guest on over 100 top radio shows (including Fox News Radio), is a contributor to Ebru Today TV and hosts her own radio show, Anger 911, on www.Anger911.net.
Janet's spoken at the United Nations, Notre Dame University, was a keynote speaker for the YWCA National Week Without Violence Campaign, and is a past board member for the World Addiction Foundation.
She's a former columnist for the Daily Record and contributing writer to Woman’s World Magazine, Living Solo, Prime Woman Magazine, and N.J. Family. Her name has appeared in print more than 100 million times, including The Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, Alaska Business Monthly and more than 50 other publications.
A consultant to corporations including AT&T, U.S. Army, U.S. Postal Service, and Hoffman-LaRoche, Janet is N.J. State certified in domestic violence, an instructor at a battered women's shelter, and founder of The Antidote to Anger Group. She specializes in healing anger and conflict and creating inner peace and writes a weekly blog and bi-monthly newsletter.
Janet has authored 8 books, including the highly acclaimed The Secret Side of Anger (endorsed by NY Times bestselling author, Dr. Bernie Siegel).
Read what Marci Shimoff, New York Times bestselling author, says of Janet's latest book, The Great Truth; Shattering Life's Most Insidious Lies That Sabotage Your Happiness Along With the Revelation of Life's Sole Purpose:
"Janet dispels the lies and misconceptions many people have lived by and outlines a practical path to an extraordinary life beyond suffering. Written with honesty, clarity, sincerity, and humor, this book serves as a wonderful guide for anyone seeking a more enriching and fulfilling life.”
Dr. Bernie Siegel says, "All books of wisdom are meant to be read more than once. The Great Truth is one such book."