Solution Saturday: One of my Colleagues Rubs me the Wrong Way
I work with a person who just rubs me the wrong way. I get along well with most people, but can’t seem to figure this one out. My boss doesn’t want to get involved. I want to quit.
How can I deal with this person?
Rubbed the wrong way
We all end up working with people who rub us the wrong way. Changing jobs won’t make this issue go away.
Don’t run from bad situations; run toward good.
Questions to help you reflect on your journey.
- How might you bring out their best? Leaders deal with diverse personalities. You limit yourself when you can’t work with certain people.
- Irritation reveals who you are. What is it about you, that causes them to rub you the wrong way? Controlling people don’t like other controllers. Conscientious people don’t like irresponsibility.
- Are they like you?
- Which of your values do they violate?
- Have other people, who are like this person, rubbed you the wrong way? Is there a pattern?
- Who do you want to be during your interactions with the person. Don’t allow impulse to control you.
- How might this person make you better? The worst thing you can do when your teammates rub you the wrong way is allow them to bring out your worst, drain your energy, and limit vision for yourself.
- How much of the bad stuff in your life is other people’s fault? Do you see a pattern of blame?
The danger of people who rub us the wrong way is we believe we have “legitimate” justification to hang on to our negative responses.
Never allow a frustrating relationship be the reason you live below your potential.
What might help a person who works with people who rub them the wrong way?
Dan, first, I love your right-on-target-practical advice. Thank you for this blog.
I agree that you always want your “best person” to present itself and search for discovery of why this person is irritating you. Many times this is a challenge not to be derailed by this person’s style. It is possible to “live with them and become more understanding and I recommend to have some “thought-interruption” techniques to interfere with a normal response that takes you to a negative place. This requires asking some of your questions and really doing some self discovery also. I love the Ladder of Inference Model to help give a visual of how quickly you can climb the ladder with inferences that may not be correct and to intentially “not allow yourself to climb that ladder.”
Many time co-workers irritations can be put in check with the above techniques, self-discovery assessments and reframing intentions. They really should not have control over you or your contributions. However, if you find that you are constantly putting yourself in check and having to change positive work behaviors, I would recommend looking for another opportunity “to run towards.” This may occur especially if the person is a boss and the behaviors are toxic to the point that it is draining your energy and it affects your work output.
Thanks Gerri. I appreciate the good word and your useful comment.
I’m glad you added an emphasis on seek other opportunities. Tough minded people may hang on too long. As you say, if the person that rubs you the wrong way is the boss, all the more reason to chase other opportunities.
Hy Dan – great input: ” Don´t run away …!”
It sounds for me like a kind of Co-Creation,
the Position of Reaction,
or call it Co-dependancy!
We create together something – new … which is my part of this acting?
Which way do I go and realize myself:
Decide and act freely or reacting
Resonanz – “inside like outside”?
Let me take a look from diffrent perspectives (sujectiv and objectiv):
What do I think and feel – and which false conviction I carry inside,
because of my thoughts or feelings (emotion) about … !
Question: Is my respect and esteem less,
may my perspective is wrong and/or
– do I have something important overlooked?
We can decide – (… in different ways):
“Love it” … accept it (… please without fear!),
“Change it … be creative and intuitiv (your inner wisdom,
this means … open your mind – open your heart!),
or “Leave it” – still carrying your own special message into future,
you have to learn something, often we struggle with the same lesson,
sooner or later? – Yes, we will …
till we found the right solution or cognition (wisdom).
Now, we can see much more clear or
our shadow hides something important for us?
Love it and change it
– in my opinion, the best way is to create something new,
maybe together 😉 you can go along with, find good solutions
– watch out for constructive possibilities!
Another way …
Let’s ask our counterpart as he think and interpret
– and try to take his position.
Find out, why he act like he does!
Either we can learn to understand him
or convince him that our view is correct!
Cause and effect!
Please – take your self-responsibility – that is very important!
Important for our world in a higher sense, too.
>> What you want – give …
Love, Respect and peace – be open – be free – be!
All the best for you.
Side note to rethink:
A "victim" may also itself make the perpetrator
and thereby manipulated only other.
He is to blame and responsibility for yourself!
He does not recognize the self-deception!
Good Luck. 😉
Start a dialogue … open your senses and take your time for your interlocutor:
“hear” really really – attentive
& Speech (clear, open and true communication 🙂 … both give each other Attention!
Thanks Beate. “…the best way is to create something new…” Love that.
I have always felt it helps to try to start with taking more of a perspective of pity when I initially feel the “other” person just has terrible people skills and every engagement becomes unpleasant. Like Covey’s tale from the opening of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, perhaps something terrible recently happened in their lives you know not of. Or assume they are currently surrounded by people or situations that keep bringing down to a primate/reptile mindset and see yourself as the one who can be a positive influence.
I’ve had critical conversations that I rehearsed carefully for and it has always turned out to either be something IS happening in their lives they have no control over it or we are communicating poorly about what our end goals are and what is appropriate communication styles for public venues.
Thanks James. I feel the challenge of taking ownership of my interactions and assuming responsibility for everything I can do to make things better. Very powerful.
I am not sure how or if this relates, but I’m going to say it anyway: It’s not true that good guys finish last: Good guys are winners before the “game” even starts!
There’s a scripture that says “Love never fails…” I wholeheartedly believe that. The quality and characteristic of “love” never fails. We all have people in our lives who are difficult at times. Relationships can be complicated, yet the quality and characteristics of love never fail.
The quality and characteristics of love are clearly defined in 1 Corinthians 13 as being patient and kind. Love does not seek its own way. It keeps no record of wrongs. And most importantly, love never fails. Note this chapter on love does not talk at all about how we feel. Love isn’t about feelings. It’s a choice. We choose to be patient, even when we don’t feel like being patient. We choose to be kind, even when we don’t feel like being kind. And no matter what situation we’re in, we can choose love. We’re never more like ourselves than when we are acting in love and goodness, and we will never fail because love never fails.
It’s easy to love when times are good. What happens to us and our quality and characteristics of love when “our loved one” is not so lovable? Do we learn to run or to trust? Is it possible that persons who need the most love will ask for it in the most unloving of ways?
When we don’t understand the circumstances that surround us, it’s easy to be shaken by life’s alarms. The trials of work may sound like a call to evacuate people—or to run away or to even respond in ways that are disheartening and destructive. But we would do well to listen more closely. The trial may be nothing more than a reminder that our challenge is not designed to break us…rather to bend us more toward the power of our heart, will and spirit…and maybe even forgiveness.
These are great victories of leadership…of which good guys can never be cheated.
These are victories of soul and spirit: Even if we lose, we win!
Thank you Books.
You wrote, “What happens to us and our quality and characteristics of love when “our loved one” is not so lovable?” … That is a kick in the pants for me. What good is our commitment to seek another’s highest good if we only apply it when it’s easy.
(Seek the highest good of others is one way of thinking about love.)
Again–and like always–thank you, Dan. Your last one-line freaked me out because it is so succinct and makes everything I tried to say so clear…to ME! You made my love analogy perfectly relevant to leadership just with those four words “highest good in others.” You’ve got a leadership wisdom that is truly blessed. Continued success be to you.
That’s very much true not co up to work with certain people shows your limitation, but Dan what about difference in value system, if it does not match , still shall continue to follow through and try to match that person.
It is so easy to point the finger of blame… As with so many things, it comes down to the choices we make. IF we decide that being part of the solution – to whatever is complicating things, we can work with others so inclined to optimize the outcomes. If we choose to ignore the opportunity, how sad…
An interesting post.It
Some people are conning! They have a habit of playing with your kind nature and talk in a smart sweet way. The best thing is to avoid them or don’t pay much attention while they try to drag you in their unnatural talks. If you talk bit frankly and try to stop them then they try to humiliate you in front of others. If continued for a longer time, it can damage your image and the perception leading to your loosing the due recognition and rewards.
Leave the company of such people and talk to them precisely and officially. These people are either with better positions or closer to the power.It is better to shun them from rubbing habit with a clear stand that you know what they are doing and show your unhappiness.
Good Morning Everyone,
May I offer a different perspective that may be a little tough to swallow?
– We all have to work with people we don’t like from time to time, it’s what makes us adjust and change as a person over time. No doubt the author’s heart is in the right place.
– In the original question, the author refers to themselves six times. This is 11.5 percent of the total words in the question itself. This tells me that the author is thinking through this as themselves being the target rather than the good of the overall team. In issues like this, take yourself out of the center of the issue.
– The person being offensive or rubbing people the wrong way could actually be a reacting to their perception of the author’s behavior. People typically aren’t mean just for the sake of it. There is a root reason behind it.
– It’s possible that the one who rubs the wrong way is the only one of the group who is less tolerant than the rest of the group. Or it could be that “Rubbed” is the one less tolerant than the rest of the group.
– Point is, reflect on yourself to understand if you are behaving in a way where you could be perceived negatively in any way by this person, or perhaps by the whole group. The person who is rubbing you the wrong way could only be reacting to your perceived behavior.