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Dealing with pushy people in your life

January 19, 2013

By Lori Hanson

Do you know anyone that is pushy? Do you have a co-worker, boss or friend that’s always trying to run the show and do things their way? Kind of wears you out doesn’t it?

Think about the interactions with these people, you don’t really want to do it the way they are pushing for, but they won’t back down and you don’t know how to tell them to buzz off. Then you get stressed whether you are consciously aware of it or not.

If you are shy or a bit insecure it can be difficult to know how to deal with this type of personality. Yet we all run in to them from time to time. And it can really make things difficult and…stressful.

(The other end of the spectrum is what I call Energy Vampires who are pulling on you—sucking the life out of you because they like you and depend on you to do things for them. Kind of like a leach, you just can’t shake them off.)

Dealing with pushy people takes a bit of practice. Here’s a few tips to help you hone your skills for taking your power back.

1. Recognize that you have a choice
You always have a choice for how to engage with people. If this is a situation where you don’t have to work with the person, made the decision that is best for you. If this is a person you are involved with on a personal level, re-evaluate what is important. Sometimes it’s better to just disengage from the situation. Life’s short. Be happy.

2. Negotiate
You don’t always have to do things their way. Ask them why doing it (Way A) is important.
Is it more effective, has it been proven, or is it just how they have done it before?
Ask if you could consider a different approach (Way B).
Give them some examples of how it could work and negotiate to meet in the middle if possible.

If it’s your boss, you will have to find the middle ground, or do it their way if they continue to be a bully about the approach. But study their behavior and how they respond to your proposal. You can prepare options in advance next time and be ahead of the game.

3. Realize that it’s not you
Just because someone is pushing you into their way of doing something doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you or your approach. Some people just have an overwhelming need to be in control of everything. This is no reflection on you, or your worth as a person.

4. Exhale
After dealing with a pushy person give yourself an outlet. Get rid of the energy of being pushed around. Inhale and exhale slowly (count to 5 on each inhale and exhale). Shake out your arms, move your head around and let it go! It’s not worth letting their behavior affect your morning, afternoon or more importantly—your sleep.

Remember, it’s important to practice these skills so you can master them. Don’t be shy. Be the person you want to be and don’t get pushed around on the playground of life.

If you need help developing confidence and communication skills, contact us.


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