Welcome to part two of: How to Deal with the Coworker that Drives You NutsLast time, we talked about why it's important to get along. We noticed that people don't leave the job, they leave the coworker that they can't stand, or they leave the boss that they don't respect. Today is part two of this series: Let's talk about 5 strategies you can use to get along with people. Watch the video or keep reading for more...

1. Identify the Trigger

What triggers you? What happens that makes you go: "Hmm. They're getting on my nerves"? When does that happen? Try to pinpoint exactly what the trigger is, because then, once you know exactly what causes you to feel that way, then you can create a different response to this. An incident response plan. Which brings me to strategy number two...

2. Create a Different Response Plan

...Create a different response plan. You know, these fire practices we do so we know exactly what to do in case of a fire instead of going into panic mode? That's what this means. Once you've identified your trigger, create your own binder as to what you should do if you got triggered. How do you want to respond instead?

3. Look at the Advantages

What are you going to put in your binder, in your emergency response plan? You need to look at the advantages. What's in it for you, really? You are at your job because maybe you love what you do, maybe you're really good at it, and potentially, you have a nice paycheck and you like that. What is it that makes you want to keep that job and makes you want to make an effort to get along with this person?

You also need to look at the other person's advantages. What is one thing that this person has? For example, you could think: "Okay, I don't like them, but I guess they're really good at what they do. I guess they're pretty reliable." You may dig for a bit, but you will find one thing and then you can just focus on that one thing that this person has that is an actual benefit in your life. Maybe you will witness that they're very nice to their children, or maybe you could try to get to know them. Ask them some questions. Find something that you may have in common, one thing that will allow for a better relationship.

4. Insulate Yourself

Find some ways to completely insulate yourself so that it doesn't affect you anymore. How do you want to respond instead of getting into your own emotions and start panicking? How would you like to be calm to not let this affect you, even if some people are quite nasty sometimes? I've found this quote that I think is pretty fitting in this context: 

"In order to insult me, I must first value your opinion. Nice try though."

You cannot be insulted or get mad if you don't value their opinion. Yes, you can find something that's good about them, but if there's some gossip going on or if they're doing something wrong, you don't have to value that opinion, and nothing can get to you if you don't pay attention.

5. Make Up the Story

Make up the story that you need to make up to make this work for you. I had a client that was in a similar situation, one where she had a really hard time with a coworker. We had tried everything. Here's what worked. We pretended that this coworker that she couldn't stand had special needs and that they had Down Syndrome! She could never be mad at somebody that had special needs for being slow or making mistakes. In her head, she started perceiving this person as if they were somebody with special needs, and it completely reframed the way that she would interact with that person. She became a lot more patient, and therefore, the other person started to be nicer and less stressed too, and started to make less mistakes.

At the end of the day, it's about you, waking up in the morning, looking forward to your day, loving what you do and accepting and getting along with the people around you.


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Check out some of my previous blog posts...

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