It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Advice wanted for dealing with a toxic personality.

page: 2
5
<< 1   >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 04:19 PM
link   
reply to post by NuclearMitochondria
 




I think he would explode at me......





posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 04:22 PM
link   
reply to post by cabinda
 


Well, you seem to already understand the potential abuse has to start a cycle. Most often when someone is abused they want to abuse the other person back, abuse someone else, or abuse themselves. When you see that for what it is you have the power to stop the cycle in yourself, though there isn't a lot you can do for someone else. It sounds like this person has been abused one too many times and is caught up in such a cycle that all he knows is abuse. It usually takes a very traumatic event to reach someone like that. Some you will never reach.

Unfortunately, you are directly in this persons path. You could try to talk to him. Though you're not likely to get very far and will probably only make things worse. You could make his superiors aware of the situation. Then if he is a valuable worker it could come down to you are him. I guess you could learn to live with it or find another job, but it isn't healthy to keep yourself in someone's path when they are that far gone.



posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 04:25 PM
link   
reply to post by Onet Wosix
 


It's said that when confronted by a situation such as yours, you should

(1) try to improve the situation

if that fails, you're advised to

(2) alter your own attitude towards the situation


and if that fails, you should

(3) get the hell away from the situation



posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 05:04 PM
link   
reply to post by Onet Wosix
 


First some questions . . .

1. What's your relative ranks in the organization?
2. What's his/her relationship like with the boss above both of you?

3. Is there ANYTHING AT ALL that he/she likes consistently ENOUGH that could be used as a reinforcer in a slow behavior mod shaping effort?

4. Is there ANYTHING AT ALL that you have control of that could be used inobtrusively as an aversive stimulus that could be used as a 'punishment' in a slow behavior mod shaping effort? Even such as . . . looking away; turning away; walking away; looking disgusted; sounding disgusted in tone; looking disgusted as one might look at a temper throwing 2 year old and with head high but not haughty--just mature--walking away . . . ?

5. Does he/she have allies in your work group?
6. Does he/she have any hobbies at all?

7. Does he/she read much at all?
8. What outside-of-work interests does he/she have?

9. What has he/she said about their relationship with their father particularly but mother as well?

10. Do they have any kids? What ages? What's the nature of their relationship with their kids?

11. If you had to guess, what would you guess would be their 3 biggest points of pain and angst generally in their lives and closest relationships?

12. If you had to guess--do you think it would be more realistic, functional to begin to

A) draw a firm line and isolate the person except for absolutely necessary work related communications [usually has negative side-effects work-wise]

or

B) slowly shape the relationship and the person toward a sort of functioning mutually respectful friendship [doing arm's length or less long term therapy with gentle tiny shaping behavior efforts takes tons of patience. Yet, would be the safest--depending--unless they are the kind of psychopath that murders those closest to them! LOL]

or

C) slowly shape the person's behavior with positive/negative reinforcers & punishments e.g. smiles, frowns, pleasant eye contact/ frowns; pleasant tones; negative tones etc. delivered immediately after good or bad behavior/communicationis on their part

or

D) a paradoxical kind of moderately unpredictable dance where on an irregular basis you were warm and responsive to their good stuff--ignoring it the rest of the time--particularly if their good stuff wasn't all that good. coupled with you were sharply disapproving of their bad stuff when it was really bad but ignored it when it wasn't all that bad. But somewhat you became too unpredictable and maybe a little uneasy for them to be around--that is--they'd not be able to predict your response and so might be uneasy around you.

Trouble is with D) it's very tricky. And, I'd want a great relationship with the boss first and maybe even clue him or her in that I was going to try an experiment to see if I could lessen X's troublesom prickliness toward me.

It's just that in some situations where all else fails, some paradoxical stuff may be the only route.

E) Of course, you could always check out Neuro Linguistic Programming and use some of that in a behavior mod sort of way. I tend to avoid that for philosophical reasons--it's very manipulative beyond even the above and not very upfront at that . . . yet is very powerful to a point.



===================================================

There is a book called BOUNDARIES--great stuff for drawning functional boundaries in all kinds of relationships and situations.

Without knowing more, here's some hazardous off the top of my head suggestions--in addition to the above.

1. IF you think the person is incurably curious, suspicious etc. you could begin to take some articles from the net to work about:

A) ATTACHMENT DISORDER--PARTICULARLY ITS EFFECTS ON ADULT RELATIONSHIPS

B) SELF-ESTEEM; SELF-CONFIDENCE

C) A SENSE OF WORTH

D) LOCUS OF CONTROL ISSUES

E) STRESS--PARTICULARLY STRESS AND STRESS REDUCTION AT WORK; RELAXATION EXERCISES

F) HOW TO BUILD MORE SATISFYING RELATIONSHIPS

G) HOW TO STRENGTHEN THE IMMUNE SYSTEM THROUGH GOOD RELATIONSHIPS

H) HOW TO SLEEP BETTER BY DEALING WITH EMOTIONAL DISTRESS BETTER

I) How to overcome CONTROL FREAK habits.

ETC.

1. I WOULD NOT OPENLY READ THE ARTICLES [one at a time] in front of her. I'd act like I was reading the article and then quickly and somewhat obviously but not glaringly obviously hide it in a magazine. The first day or 3, I'd really hide the magazine where she was unlikely to find it--in my things. After that, after you were sure she'd caught you 'hiding it' at least 1-3 times, then, I'd 'accidentally' leave the magazine in the break room with part of the title visible out the top or from under the magazine just before she was to go on break.

2. You would do well to plan that any strategy or group of strategies could take 4-24 months to show the kind of progress you need. We can all be very resistent to change--even when it's to our benefit to change. Troublesome people all the more so.

3. When folks find out their usual behaviors suddenly do NOT work--THEY TEND TO DO THEM MORE AND WORSE for a few days or weeks. THIS IS NORMAL. Must be ignored, essentially.

4. You can also experiment with saying somethign like:

"Mildred, I just noticed that WHEN ___________________, your response seemed to be to _______________. I was puzzled as to your expectation about how I/We/another co-worker would respond to your statement/actions."

The above is NOT a question. In fact, I'd probably stop asking the person questions for at least 60-90 days. Just make statements that invited them to share what you needed to know. PARTICULARLY AVOID "WHY" QUESTIONS. THEY ARE ALMOST ALWAYS EXPERIENCED AS BEING ACCUSING in most relationships.

The above also doesn't blame or evaluate--it merely notes that the person did XYZ and you were curious about their expectations regarding the response they'd get from their environment.

Much of the time, such folks don't stop and think a flip about the response they expect--they are just spewing or emoting all over those nearby.

If you made such statements 1-4 times a day . . . after 3-4 weeks, they would almost have to think ahead of time about the results of their statements/actions--because they know you and others will--and they are likely insecure enough they MUST try and outfox you by anticipating threat. That compulsion coupled with such a somewhat frequently stated curiosity leaves them little choice but to think more ahead about the consequences of their statements, actions.

5. Along with 4. You could then say something like:

"Hmmmmmm I suspect you could think of 2-3 OTHER ways to respond to _______________ IF your goal for my/our response was _________________. Maybe one of those other ways would result more in what you were hoping for from us."

Most of us don't get up on a Monday morning trying to come up with the most awful ways to relate to our co-workers. Most folks have just never been taught any better and have plenty of their own angst and pain they are used to habitually spewing all over everyone--perpetuating their experience that the world 'treats them like ____."


6. Somebody--could take the person out for dinner after work and gently enquire . . . "Mildred, what sort of relationships would you ideally like to have at work?"

And if there were any kind of sane, rational, adult response, a plan of action to get there could be suggested.
Here's several pages of books at Amazon.com

7. It may well be also, that just a listening empathetic ear--feeding back to her in your own words what you heard her say--would bolster her feeling respected and cared for very powerfully.

8. Of course, some folks are so bruised and abused, the minute someone starts to show caring--they have to escalate the destructiveness toward the caring person to sabotage their expectation that sooner or later the "good" person will disappoint them and abandon them or hurt them hugely.

9. IF--A RARE IF--there were 3 co-workers who were very strong individuals personality and emotionally etc. caring, kind, tender-hearted but as tough as nails . . . the 3 of them could take her to dinner and say essentially:

"Mildred, we are hurt and offended at the way you speak to us and relate to us. However, we are going to redouble our efforts to show you caring and kindness. We just want you to know that we are also going to decrease our willingness to let you get away with verbally abusing us. It is your choice, You can help us build better relationships with all our mutual efforts--or--you can find yoruself more isolated."

10. But the 3 would have to be willing and able to be forgiving and show tenacious persistent kindness regardless--AS WELL AS not allowing her to just spew, spew, spew without at least walking away from her, if not telling her: "Mildred, that was unnecessary. If you want a decent response from me, Please speak to me with the kind of respect you'd like to have."


Here is a listing books on Amazon.com on how to handle difficult people. I won't take the time to screen them all for you.

www.amazon.com...=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=HOW+TO+HANDLE+DIFFICULT+PEOPLE&x=0&y=0


ENOUGH OFF THE TOP OF MY HEAD.

Yes, My PhD is in Clinical Psych. I'm a semi-retired former Evangelical Christian missionary and teaching part time.



posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 05:10 PM
link   
reply to post by Onet Wosix
 


In terms of the constant arguments . . .

You could say something like:

"I understand that you seem to enjoy arguments. I really don't. And, I'm not willing to corrode my arteries with the cortisol in my blood that arguments generate."

"My position on that issue/question is: ____________________________ You may do what you wish about that."

or

"I'm uncertain about whether you are

A) asking for information sincerely--or want me to say something you can argue with.

or

B) seeking to influence or control me about that issue or genuinely want us to work together toward some goal."

"I'm not willing to talk about that further unless the boss referees. "

or

"I'm not willing to say anything more about that for at least 4-24 hours."

or

"I'm only willing to talk further about that AFTER you demonstrate a sincere willingness to have a mutually respectful dialogue about it. IF your tone or words show otherwise, the conversation will be over."



posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 05:14 PM
link   

Originally posted by Screwed

This situation calls for love.
Buy him luch or a candy bar from the candy machine.
Bring in some Starbucks on your way in to work for ONLY you and him.

Any sort of Random act of kindness will be the equivilent of putting a mirror in front of his face and will FORCE him to
see what a prick he is. It will not be immediate but it WILL have an effect. Be overly nice to him. editby]


THIS IS AN EXCELLENT STRATEGY.

HOWEVER, FOLKS NEED TO BE PREPARED TO PERSUE IT EXTENSIVELY, RELENTLESSLY FOR THE LONG TERM--AND IT HAS TO COME ACROSS AS GENUINE.

It's also best if it's often humorous, serendipitous, spontaneous . . . and if it kee's him knocked a bit off kilter in terms of what he might be expecting from you.



posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 05:25 PM
link   
reply to post by cabinda
 


Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

In that case . . . have you talked at all to his boss above him? Might be dangerous, I don't know.

Sounds like his insecurities usually result in CONTROL FREAK POWER JUNK

Those sorts can take very careful handling.

The LOVE EM approach is still one of the best but also one of the trickiest because they are likely not to trust it; to test it to destruction; to sabotage it every way they can for an extended time and/or to increase their demands of the loving person.

NOT FUN.

Some of my earlier suggestions could still be worth a try--but in a

STRONG/SUBMISSIVE/ASSERTIVE/ NOT WIMPY, NOT CHALLENGING TONE AND ATTITUDE.

That is . . . most of the time, I'd TRY and avoid hooking his control freak authoritarian dangerousness by somewhat emphasizing submissiveness. BUT NOT IN A VICTIM ATTITUDE OR TONE that he'd just be inclined to take more advantage of.

MORE like a slightly lower equal. Or slightly but significantly lower almost equal.

I'd want to communicate I wasn't a thread but I also that I was not about to tolerate abuse.

Occasionally, If I thought I could get away with it--particularly organizationally . . .

I might say something like

"You sound like you're feeling less than happy and fulfilled."

or

"You sound like you have a major case of acid reflux--would you like Pepcid?"

or

"GOODNESS! I don't know if I'm supposed to kiss your boots or run for my life!" --that one's probably not realistic to try. LOL.

or

"When you said that, your best hoped-for response from me was what?"

Given the givens, I sure would try and find out how trustworthy and functional it would be to talk to his boss above him.



posted on Apr, 27 2011 @ 05:34 PM
link   
reply to post by cabinda
 


The BOUNDARIES book has some good stuff in it about establishing proper boundaries.

Some of the books listed at Amazon.com above might help as well.

That sort of fellow is a real challenge at best.

I'd also check into the grievance procedures and policies at your job. I'd try and avoid anything formal at most costs but be ready to take it there if pushed to it.

You could experiment with low-key to moderate key levels of the following:

"My gut tells me that you expect me to REACT in a wounded aversive way to you. I choose to not do that. I don't appreciate being talked to in that tone. However, I'm not going to join you in that kind of mutual disrespect."


"When you speak to me in the same tone of respect you want from me, I'll be happy to respond to what you said."

"I feel too hurt by your tone to respond right now. I'll get back to you in an hour."

"I feel too stunned by your tone to be able to think, right now. I'll get back to you in 20 minutes. Please excuse me."

=============================================

PLEASE UNDERSTAND--THOSE OF US OFFERING SUGGESTIONS ON ATS ARE DOING SO FROM A GREAT DISTANCE WITH VERY LITTLE INFORMATION.

We may have elaborate ideas from decades of experience and training.

HOWEVER, WE ARE NOT THERE. WE HAVE NOT INTERVIEWED ALL PARTIES EXTENSIVELY. WE ONLY HAVE YOUR SIDE OF THE STORY. WE CAN ONLY MAKE INCOMPLETE FLAWED SUGGESTIONS.

YOU MUST THOUGHTFULLY CONSIDER THE SUGGESTIONS and try ONLY those that YOU FEEL are fitting and worth the risk--and YOUR OWN RISK IT IS, FOR SURE!

It's not us that might lose your job--it's you. It's not us that he might hit--it's you.

So PLEASE--ONLY DO THOSE THINGS, TRY THOSE THINGS that YOU OWN AS YOUR OWN CONVICTION TO BE WORTH TRYING AT YOUR OWN RISK.



posted on Apr, 28 2011 @ 06:58 AM
link   

Originally posted by Screwed
I know this is going to sound really super Christian of me but I am not a Christian by any means.

That said,

This situation calls for love.
Buy him luch or a candy bar from the candy machine.
Bring in some Starbucks on your way in to work for ONLY you and him.

Any sort of Random act of kindness will be the equivilent of putting a mirror in front of his face and will FORCE him to
see what a prick he is. It will not be immediate but it WILL have an effect. Be overly nice to him. Telling him to have a great day.

Tell him the worst possible thing you could ever tell someone you are pissed off at. Use this one sparingly. are you ready????

"I pray for you everynight" or "I am going to pray for you".
Stand back and watch the sparks fly!!!!
Initially he will be offendede and pissed off at that remark but.....if you say it convicingly and without a smirk on your face, he will be forced to review the situation at a later time when he is alone with himself. He will inevitably come to the same conclusion that everyone else already has..... "I am a real PRICK"!!!!!

Be careful, LOVE conquers EVERYTHING and should be applied generously.

Trust me, try it and you'll seriously be amazed.
edit on 27-4-2011 by Screwed because: (no reason given)
hmmm I will agree with you up until "have a great day" the rest he might think your slightly unhinged



posted on Apr, 28 2011 @ 10:55 AM
link   
Kill them with kindness.

An argument takes TWO people at least...



posted on Apr, 30 2011 @ 05:20 PM
link   
Delete please.
edit on 30-4-2011 by Big Raging Loner because: Delete please.



posted on May, 9 2011 @ 09:07 AM
link   

Originally posted by Onet Wosix
I work with someone who is, what I would call a 'toxic personality', and may well have some sort of mental illness,

they constantly try to start arguments, 'pick' and are generally very unpleasant,

i have tried to ignore him, but as i work with him every day, i cant .

any advice on how to deal with these sort of people?


Treat them like an alcoholic, view the outward manifestation of their sickness as them binge drinking and chide them for it. Make it known to the person that you see through it all. Of course if the person is either a psychopath or a full blown narcissist there might be blow back. But if they are a sociopath they will learn to behave themselves around you.
-----
Also do this privately. Because if he isn't aware of his behavior(I know it sounds silly but without self reflection we do loads of dumb stuff we aren't truly aware of)he will be more grateful for your gracious behavior. And instead of verbal chiding try to use body language, especially if you have to counter act the behavior in a public setting(with other people around.

But if this person is a psychopath, see if you can transfer or find a new job. I don't feel comfortable giving advice on how to deal with psychopaths as I personally view them as vicious animals, more akin to a rabid bear then a human being.

edit on 9-5-2011 by korathin because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 9 2011 @ 03:29 PM
link   
thankyou everyone SO much.

your advice has been very helpful - I am working through some of the problems with your help

THANKYOU !!!!




posted on Oct, 15 2011 @ 06:35 AM
link   

Originally posted by korathin

Originally posted by Onet Wosix
I work with someone who is, what I would call a 'toxic personality', and may well have some sort of mental illness,

they constantly try to start arguments, 'pick' and are generally very unpleasant,

i have tried to ignore him, but as i work with him every day, i cant .

any advice on how to deal with these sort of people?


Treat them like an alcoholic, view the outward manifestation of their sickness as them binge drinking and chide them for it. Make it known to the person that you see through it all. Of course if the person is either a psychopath or a full blown narcissist there might be blow back. But if they are a sociopath they will learn to behave themselves around you.
-----
Also do this privately. Because if he isn't aware of his behavior(I know it sounds silly but without self reflection we do loads of dumb stuff we aren't truly aware of)he will be more grateful for your gracious behavior. And instead of verbal chiding try to use body language, especially if you have to counter act the behavior in a public setting(with other people around.

But if this person is a psychopath, see if you can transfer or find a new job. I don't feel comfortable giving advice on how to deal with psychopaths as I personally view them as vicious animals, more akin to a rabid bear then a human being.

edit on 9-5-2011 by korathin because: (no reason given)


bolded bit there is important. sociopaths, psychopaths cannot be reasoned with. your options are leave, or raise up and #ing destroy them. requires "nice" person to stop being nice and be a bit of an assassin.



posted on Oct, 17 2011 @ 01:27 PM
link   
Just keep contact brief, to the point, but nicely, and that's really all you can do.

I know how you feel... I'm the kind of guy who gets along with everyone...a natural (if albeit, reluctant) leader.

Yet, I've got one person I work with who just gives me a "bug off" vibe. It isn't just me, she's actually been in knock down drag out arguments with other co-workers... But, I simply deal with her quickly, and politely, and over some time, it's gotten better.

Heck, she even asked me for advice the other day, when she realized she was too harsh on someone...




top topics



 
5
<< 1   >>

log in

join