Twenty-five Tips to Deal with the Impossible Person in Your Life
How to deal with difficult people
We all have at least one person in our life who at the most inopportune times descends into our space like a thunder burst on a beautiful sunny day.
I see you rolling your eyes! Sadly, he or she is either a relative or a co-worker. Though we try, there seems to be no way to avoid them.
It is possible to learn to roll with the punches! The Lord says there is always a way of escape from temptation so you may bear what you are going through.
Twenty-five Tips to Deal with an Impossible Person
1. Move towards the person with thanksgiving – not dread
To thank the Lord the moment you see that person, and before you see them is even better – you move out of the reactivity of the reptilian brain into the prefrontal cortex where you are able to think clearly. So be thankful. Even if it is just because you aren’t with them 24/7.
2. Become aware of what you do that triggers them
Once they are triggered, nothing you do will be right. Often a single word, subject, or simple action will set him/her off. No matter how innocent your remark may have been, they are acting out of their amygdala. Their perception will be you are against them. Avoid that word, subject, or action and your encounter will be less stressful.
3. Know your own hot buttons
4. Pray for that person
5. Be quick to forgive or to ask forgiveness
Failing to forgive the person who hurts us, negatively impacts brain health. Over time, it creates fear, anger, bitterness, and even illness. Quickly take the person off your hook of judgment and give him/her to the Lord. Then speak blessing over them.
6. Learn to set boundaries, and keep them!
One reason we struggle with certain people is they violate our boundaries. When we fail to take responsibility for our own choice to allow them to violate our boundary, we become resentful. For your sanity. Set healthy boundaries. They are vital for healthy interpersonal relationships.
7. Learn to be a good listener
8. Develop empathy
9. Cast your cares upon the Lord
Cast that person on the Lord. You will be hurt and move into sin if you try to carry that burden on your own shoulders, while He is able to carry them without being harmed.
10. Be careful what you share with this person
Don’t give them information that allows them to gain control over you.
Ten More Tips to Deal with an Impossible Person
11. Avoid gossip
12. You don’t have to like this person.
13. Develop outside interests where this person will never be present
If you live or work with this person, but also spend your social time with them, it engenders stress and steals your joy. Make other friends. Go places where you can enjoy yourself without fear of encountering them.
14. Show mercy
15. Trust your gut
The Lord speaks to you through your intuition. If you have a check in your spirit – don’t enter that room, don’t place yourself where you will be exposed to that person’s censure or dominance.
16. Respect yourself!
17. Give yourself permission to say No!
You don’t have to do everything that you are asked to do. Develop the habit of asking the Lord’s permission. If He says no – that lets you off their hook of judgment.
18. Don't take on false responsibility
You are responsible for your choices and your tasks. You are not responsible for the other person’s choices. Don’t pick up their uncompleted work or accept blame for their choices.
19. Don’t allow the person to draw you into their anger
Some people are bullies and seek to transfer their anger onto you to torment you, to make you look bad. If you come under their anger, it allows them to dominate you. Take deep breaths. Ask Jesus to be LORD of your emotions so you are able to respond with calmness and not fear.
20. Celebrate Life!
5 Mores Tips!
21. Avoid Feelings of Being Powerless
22. Gently respond to impertinent questions by asking a question
When people sought to put trap the Lord Jesus, He did not answer. Instead, He would ask questions of His questioners, rather than answer an impertinent or wrong question that would give them power to abuse.
23. Know what are the important battles
24. Know that appeasement never works
25. As far as possible, seek to live at peace with all men
Remember peace at any price is not peace.
You are of infinite value. The Lord does not want you to be used like a doormat, be abused, or have your dignity stolen.
He does allow adversity in our life to help us develop boundaries, to strengthen and purify us, and to draw us closer to Himself. Let this difficult person in your life be used to make you quick to run to the Lord for comfort, for help, for encouragement, and for cleansing.
You are not powerless! You have a choice. The Lord bless and encourage your heart.
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Thank you for this helpful list! After reading this, it makes facing those difficult people much less scary and confusing because you’ve given us tools to get our focus off of our own sense of powerlessness to focus on the Lord and His will. I especially appreciate how balanced your advice and encouragement is–the Lord doesn’t want us to be a doormat, but He will use every situation in our lives to draw us to Himself. What hope! 🙂
Yes, Joy, it is quite wonderful that we never have to fear facing people that may be unkind for the Lord is always with us. If we invite Him into the equation, we immediately stand in a position of strength. May the Lord bless you and give you courage to choose life in all your interactions.
Barbara, this is an awesome post! Thank you for giving simple, yet powerful teaching for so many relationship areas! God bless you abundantly!
Thank you Robin. Like your breakthrough day with the Lord, as I began to list all the different things the Lord has taught me over the years, it was a great time. The Lord is so gracious and patient, teaching me one thing at a time. It is really exciting walking with the Lord for every day holds new possibilities. God bless you my friend.
Barbara, this is well said. Especially like your insight in number 14, to judge someone moves us under the aura of their control. But, to think the best of them helps us maintain healthy emotional boundaries. I’m glad Melanie Fyock told me you are a “heart working woman” and shared your link with me! I will be talking with you more on the Bonded Hearts group! 🙂
Hi Joy. Thank you for your comment and blessing. It is so easy to move in judgment but only the Lord is the Righteous Judge. When we keep our eyes on Him, we remain under His protective covering. A good place to be. It took me years to understand this principle and that the moment I move into judgment, I come under whatever uncleanness operates in the other person. May the Lord enable us to joyfully surrender our right to judge to Him, so we may demonstrate His mercy. Looking forward to interacting with you in the future. Blessings.