Dealing With Difficult People – Insights from the Wilderness #118

Dealing with Difficult PeopleThere are few things more frustrating than attempting to educate or pass on wisdom to a person who is not interested in the subject you are passionate about.

The flip side of that experience is telling an ego driven person, who is convinced they possess the absolute truth on one of their favorite subjects, that you don’t agree with them or you’re not interested in hearing more about their beliefs.

Ego driven people can be very intense and sometimes abusive in their attempt to convince you that you are too stupid to recognize “truth” when they have been so open and willing to “share” it with you.

So which side of these two examples do you most often find yourself?

If you identify most often with the first situation then the words of Richard Stine, from his book The World of Richard Stine, will be a quote you might want to put on your bathroom mirror. This quote has been hanging on the wall of my office for the last fifteen years. I plan to mount it in an expensive picture frame one of these days.

Stine asks the question “how do we keep our conversations from going psychologically out of control and injecting an overabundance of emotion into the discussion?”

He answers that question like this, “ My experiment right now is to attempt to lessen the emotional complications by communicating as simply as I can —– to try not to feel that I have to attack or be on the defensive when I have to deal with a tough situation. Just express the truth as I see it, and then let things develop the way they will, without trying to force them one way or another”.

This is the most powerful piece of wisdom I’ve ever encountered. As a person who loves teaching people the importance of awakening their consciousness, I’ve whispered “thank you” to Mr. Stine many times in my life.

He is probably one of the greatest unknown philosophers I’ve ever read. For example, the next page in his book, following the quote I shared with you above, reads “I wonder if one could tell the difference between flying and falling if there was nothing to crash into?”

The World of Richard Stine is the best book of philosophy I’ve ever read other than Awareness: The Perils and Opportunities of Reality by Anthony deMello.

Now, as to the second situation I raised above, my advice is this “Don’t let aggressive, hurtful, ego driven people ruin your day. Don’t give them the pleasure of making you suffer… simply smile at them and walk away. Most ego driven people won’t even recognize that you are not accepting their opinions as “truth”.

You’ll feel better, and they will be free to find someone else to force their ideas onto.

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