Negative people are everywhere. It’s almost commonplace these days, but negativity in the workplace can take a serious toll on both your health and your sanity. Before you point fingers, though, you want to be certain that you’ve done your best at trying to have a healthy relationship with those that you’re considering the negative ones. The negative people could be anyone that you’re required to work with. They could be your coworker or your boss. They’re combative, nonproductive, or overly critical. There are ways to deal with these types of people and their difficult behavior.
Label the behavior
The first thing that you need to do is to label the behavior, not the people. Understanding the reason behind their behavior will help you take back some of the lost control that you feel when faced with these types of people. Keep in mind, too, that there are two sides to every coin. Are you part of the problem when you should be part of the solution? It’s quite easy to blame something all on the other person, so make sure that you’re not contributing to the other person’s toxic and nasty behavior. You want to make an effort to keep your inaction or your action from making things worse.
You can’t change people
Remember that you can’t control some things. You can’t change people nor is it your job to do so. Changing your perspective may be the only thing that you can do in situations like these. If you don’t step back and take perspective then anything that is said or done can end up feeling like a personal affront. Changing your belief system of why that person acts the way that they do will help you in changing the root of your entire thought process on how to act and deal with the negative individual. Make sure, too, that it isn’t simply a style or relationship clash. If it’s one of these two things then taking a different approach on how to deal with that person’s sense of style or manner of handling things may help you develop a better working relationship with them in the long run.
When it comes to a toxic coworker, you have more freedom than you give yourself credit for. You have a moment when that person is attempting to start drama or problems where you can simply take control and tell them very politely that you are not going to spend work time on non-work related issues. You can also just smile and say that you’re going to go back to work. You have more control of the situation than you may be giving yourself credit for. Simply focus on your own behavior and don’t get sucked in. If you feel that you have to give that person a moment of your time because they’re a boss, then give them a moment. Explain that you only have a minute before you have to go and get something done, then set the conversation up that way. By doing this, you’re being polite while at the same time expressing that there will be only a moment before the topic will change or you are forced to leave on another important matter. Express your concern for their issue, but don’t encourage further talk on it.
Take perspective, assess, and move on
Always remember that you are in control of you. You can dictate your own actions and responses. You don’t have to allow yourself to get pulled into the drama or the negativity. Take perspective, assess, and move on. You can extract yourself gracefully without offending if need be.