6 Tips for Dealing with Difficult People, by Ty Tamasaka

6 Tips for Dealing with Difficult People

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Since starting this blog, I’ve posted valuable leadership articles and tips from other bloggers and leaders that I have found helpful and practical.  Going forward I’m going to be attempting something different and a little uncomfortable for me.  I’m going to begin blogging my own thoughts on life, leadership, and love.  Here we go…

In any type of leadership or ministry role, people can be difficult.  Some have good intentions, but have such incredibly high expectations of you that you could never satisfy them.  Others might have overpowering personalities and some just seem to have the spiritual gift of negativity, criticism and contempt!

Here are some tips to dealing with difficult people.

1 – Look for their humanity.

Sometimes it can be easy to simply see difficult people as difficult people.  First, it’s important to remember they are people with needs, desires, wants, and dreams just like you.   

2 – Keep an attitude of prayer and listen.

Keep an attitude of prayer as you engage with them.  Ask the Holy Spirit to lead and guide you as you deal with difficult people.

3 – Always be a learner.

Even if we get upset or are rubbed the wrong way, the truth is there are usually things we can learn… even from difficult people.  Be open to valid criticism and ways to improve.  Be open to learning how “not to” deal with people also.  But always be willing to learn.

4 – Refuse to be dragged down

There is an old saying, “Misery loves company.”  Keep your guard up.  Don’t give them power over you and don’t be sucked into their world of negativity.

5 – Move to problem solving

People who whine and complain a lot often feel powerless over their situations and believe things are hopeless.  Help them end their negativity by moving toward problem solving.  Of course this doesn’t always work, but it is one solution to the negativity.

6 – Be patient.  Know that only God changes hearts.

Be patient.  You cannot change people.  Only God can do that.  What you can do, is ensure you are gentle, kind, teachable, and quick to forgive.  This is also a great way to point people to God.

Creating a great culture is a church, leadership role, or in the marketplace is everyone’s job.  Don’t give a few difficult people the power to harm your church, leadership, or workplace.

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