Relationships that Work: How to Get Along with People Who Drive You Crazy

Question: What % of your bad moods at work are caused by conflicts?

Answer: About 80% (if you're like the typical person)

Think about how those conflicts wreck your work: You slip into an angry or frustrated mood and suddenly your productivity takes a nosedive.

It makes sense, then, that doing your part to strengthen relationships can boost your results: Fix the conflict, feel better, get more done. And, of course, the tougher the relationship is, the bigger the payoff in working to make it a little better.

Try these tips to make even the thorniest relationships easier to handle:

* Look for the good. It isn't necessary to like all your coworkers, but it is necessary to treat everyone with respect. The best way to respect someone is to discover their strengths, skills, or contributions; then, focus on those instead of what you don't like. The more you can recognize a person's good qualities, the easier it is to show them genuine respect.

* Don't expect miracles. Sometimes, two people who don't get along can ? over time ? grow into friends. On the other hand, sometimes relationships simply remain stuck & difficult. But if you make even small, incremental changes that cut down the stress and conflict on each side, you can consider your efforts a success.

* Don't just focus on the other person. It's easy to think the other person should change. If they do, that's a bonus. But since that may not happen, concentrate on what you can contribute to constructing a relationship that's as good as possible.

* Attack the problem, not the person. Imagine that you aren't getting information you need from another department, and it's causing your work to suffer. You may presume the other department is lazy, or doesn't care, or is trying to sabotage your success. Instead of attacking the people involved, attack the problem. Suggest a meeting to determine what the problem is and why you aren't getting the information. The real problem may be short staffing or system problems -- or they may not be getting the information they need from someone else. You'll stay solution-oriented and engage others with your professionalism intact.

* Don't let the "crabs" get you down. Know any crabs? They're the type of people for whom nothing is ever right, good enough, or "fixable." Stay determined to prevent the "crabs" from pulling you down to their level. Use these 5 steps:

1. Try to understand why they're negative. They may be dealing with a serious life issue. Understanding may help you be more sympathetic and less frustrated.

2. Talk to them about it. Tell them you've noticed they have seemed a little down and offer to help. They may not open up, but it's often helpful just to know that someone cares. It will also give them a tactful heads-up as to how they're coming across (they simply may not realize their attitude is affecting others).

3. Avoid them if the situation doesn't improve.

4. Remove them from your environment (if possible and if truly necessary).

5. Have a "recovery plan." If steps 1-3 above haven't worked, and you can't remove them (which is often the case with a coworker), have a plan for how you'll replenish your good mood after you come into contact with them. A recovery plan will at least cut your "down time" ? for example, you may be upset for 30 minutes rather than for 4 hours.

* Have one more positive interaction a day. Say "thanks," give a compliment or pass the praise. Feeling appreciated is the No. 1 motivator for most employees. While that recognition can and should come from managers, every employee can contribute with quick morale boosters.

* Keep your attitude as positive as possible, whatever your circumstances. It's easy to think your attitude is determined by other people and by uncontrollable events in your life. But if that's true, you've lost control. Stay resolved to be as happy as possible, for just five minutes at a time. You'll feel better and be easier to get along with.

Shari Peace is an international speaker, an author and the president of Peace Talks, a professional speaking firm that helps people and organizations get more done with less stress. Her book, Crank It Out!, features tips for sharper time management and increased productivity. She can be reached at http://www.sharipeace.com.

In The News:

This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

Vulture

Nicki Minaj Opens Up About Her Relationships and Fixes Yours
Vulture
But Minaj is quick to pivot from spilling tea to pouring hot coffee for anyone who needs to wake up from a bad relationship. “#Queen, know your worth. You were a Queen before him. You'll be a Queen after him. He can't make or break you. Being equally ...

and more »

Entrepreneur

Office Relationships Work a Lot Like Those With Friends and Family
Entrepreneur
When giving advice to my employees, I often ask them questions like “would that approach work in your personal relationships?” because it helps to humanize the problem they may have with a coworker. While you don't often get to choose your coworkers, ...


Psychology Today (blog)

4 Essential Steps to Take Before Your Next Relationship
Psychology Today (blog)
Grieve: People frequently self-sabotage new relationships by not fully grieving and letting go of past ones. Keep at the top of your mind that a new relationship will not be healthy if you are using it to escape the emotional misery of a divorce or ...


The Spokesman-Review

There's no replacement for human relationships fostered in wild places, writer says
The Spokesman-Review
BILLINGS – Growing up in New York City, Florence Williams was the daughter of a “hyperurban” mother who hated camping. Her father, on the other hand, loved to take summer canoe trips. As a youngster, Williams got to tag along on a weeklong paddle ...


Times of San Diego

Comparing Four Movies About Long-Term Relationships in Trouble
Times of San Diego
Just by sheer coincidence, this past month I happened to not only catch Claire Denis' new movie Let the Sunshine In, but also Chloe in the Afternoon (1972) for the first time and The Seven Year Itch (1955) while completely skipping Book Club on its ...


Daily Press

Pilots' coach building his team on relationships
Daily Press
In his 17 years with the Peninsula Pilots, the past 11 as head coach, Hank Morgan has developed contacts. Sometimes they're formed by geography, sometimes by happenstance and sometimes by the world being so small. Take Justin Haywood, who played ...


Lifehacker

Successful Relationships Don't Necessarily Last Forever
Lifehacker
As a society, we tend to look at breakups and divorce as a failure. But a relationship ending doesn't mean it wasn't successful in some way. Sometimes a fling is ideal for both parties, sometimes a long marriage ending is the only chance for a new ...


Sixth Tone

Cohabiting Couples Are Choosing Good Sex Over Good Relationships
Sixth Tone
Researchers generally define nonmarital cohabitation as a sexual relationship in which the couple delays or forgoes the legal formalities of marriage. In 2001, the Chinese government removed a definition from the country's marriage law that made it ...


PsyPost

Does uncertainty about a partner's romantic interest spice up relationships?
PsyPost
Six studies examined whether relationship uncertainty affects potential and current partners' sexual desirability, and whether expressions of partners' interest influence these effects. In Studies 1-4, participants interacted online with potential ...


Tuscaloosa News

DON NOBLE: Second novel gently highlights women's relationships
Tuscaloosa News
Lauren K. Denton published her debut novel, “The Hideaway,” only last year, in 2017. “Hideaway” tells the story of Sara Jenkins, a woman enjoying her life in New Orleans running a successful antique shop. Her grandmother dies and leaves her, in the ...

Google News

Is Your Soulmate an Idiot?

Lately, I think people are investing too much energy in... Read More

Dont Avoid Conflict and Confrontation with Your Spouse

"I just let him handle things his way." "We're not... Read More

Destroyers of Relationships

Communication and listening is very important in any relationship. For... Read More

Womens Cosmic Personality Quiz: Are You a Star Woman or an Earth Mother?

Star Women are visionary leaders, and focused on the future.... Read More

Home For The Holidays: Start That Conversation

Annie waited too long to have that talk with her... Read More

Power Struggle!

The greatest asset we have in human existence is our... Read More

Engaged, In Love, and In Limbo

Well, here I am very much in love and starting... Read More

Reaching the Ultimate Level in Human Relationships

I want to tell you a little story. Not about... Read More

I Want to Love Him... But Hes So Far Away

Okay, who are we kidding. Long-distance relationships are not supposed... Read More

Can a Male and Female be JUST Friends?

Introduction Have you ever heard or have you ever seen,... Read More

How We Define Our Relationships?

We can fall into the habit of complaining about our... Read More

Why Some Women Are Desperate

I asked Dave how he was doing since it was... Read More

Tips for Building Love Relationships - 1

Nearly everyone claims to want a great relationship with their... Read More

Office Nomance

Are Office Romance's really that bad? The answer is ?..it... Read More

Noon (A Love Story)

Noon (A Short Love story, dedicated to my wife Rosa)Marina,... Read More

Pay Attention! Mastering Communication Skills with Women

One of the biggest complaints women have about men is... Read More

Relationship Advice: 5 Tips to Make a Strong Marriage Even Better

1. Time together is time during which the complete focus... Read More

How to Use Humor to Improve Your Relationships

Humor has long been considered one of the most effective... Read More

The Womans Guide to Younger Men

I often awake to find Beverly, my older wife, wrapped... Read More

How to Get Over a Breakup

This is one of the most difficult parts of a... Read More

The Secret of Relationship Success

With a divorce rate in this country that approaches 50%,... Read More

Are You A Hopium Addict?

Are You A 'Hopium Addict?'If the question alone was enough... Read More

Improve Your Relationships Through Vastu

Do you want be in a relationship that brings you... Read More

Fear of a Broken Heart

Dear Candace,I am in the process of getting divorced and... Read More

What Men Want From Women

Actually, it's pretty simple. Deep inside the heart of every... Read More