How to deal with challenging behavior

The phrase challenging behavior covers a vast spectrum that includes everything from manipulative behavior to narcissistic behavior. Each of the behavioral patterns listed above is fraught with one inconsistency or the other. By behaving in a rude or unkindly way, people with such qualities or defections makes themselves appear “challenging” to others. To help you deal with challenging personalities, therefore, here are a few suggestions.

Be firm

People with challenging behavior are usually the ones who feel insecure about themselves and others. In order to hide their insecurity, these people use arrogance as a veil. Hence, they might demonstrate superiority to keep the sense of adequacy intact. If you are facing problems from an unnecessarily arrogant person at the work place, then be sure to tackle it smartly. In most cases, co-workers with challenging behavior are likely to make rude remarks about some imagined failure of yours. However, instead of getting angry, learn to handle the person in question with firmness. He has no business meddling around with the way you do you work and more especially so, when you do it pretty well. Hence, a firm response is exactly what the challenging behavior needs for an answer. In a meticulous manner, push the ball in his court. Ask him to go and take the matter up with higher authorities. Of course, the challenge will be too risky for him to accept, making him think twice before approaching you again.


Mock the arrogance

Selfishness is an essential trait of narcissistic personalities. People with challenging behavior simply refuse to grow up. All they are, and have ever been interested in, is their own satisfaction. Hence, reminding them of their irrational ways is the best thing to do. Let us demonstrate the point with the help of an example. Say, for instance, you are standing in a queue at the grocery store with very few items. The person standing in front of you has an entire cart to himself. The next obvious step is to ask the person if you could be given the first billing chance. Now if the person you asked happens to be a narcissist, he will surely reply in the negative. All your persuasions will fail, even if you say that there is a sick kid waiting back home. Nothing you say can deter him from the firm no. The reason is quite simple. The convenience of a co shopper does not matter to him, so long as his desires and requirements are answered. These are extreme cases of challenging behavior, where rather than reprimanding the person, go ahead and thank him for his gentlemanly qualities! Weird as it may sound, yet the irony of your remark is sure to hit him somewhere.


Ignore the person if he is bigger than you

There is hardly any dearth of hostile and arrogant people around. From superiority to feelings of inferiority – the reasons for arrogance may vary widely. However, sheer arrogance may take the shape of aggressiveness or violence in no time. Unfounded accusations or aggressive violent acts can turn dangerous. Hence, if the person in question is bigger than you, refrain from picking up unnecessary fights. After all, by confronting the person you will neither be able to improve his ways nor achieve anything significant for yourself. Therefore, make a graceful exit when the person you are up against is far superior to you in terms of physical strength. Here, of all situations at least, discretion is likely to serve you better than valor.


Avoid people with manupulative behavior

Manipulative personalities are likely to present you with a special challenge. Such people prompt others to take the path of primrose. What started off as an innocent conversation, in to time, turns into one packed with accusations like “I had told you” or “I had warned you”. In psychology, this behavioral pattern is better referred to as no-win. Once you get to recognize the manipulative behavior, moving on would be the best possible solution. It should be remembered that the behavior is nothing but a game, which the person with challenging behavior is playing at your expense. Therefore, try your best to maintain a safe distance from people with a manipulative mindset.


Get professional help

Handling challenging behavior, especially when it concerns somebody within the family, is not easy. However, in order to deal with such challenges effectively, what you need is proper understanding of the factors causing the behavioral inconsistencies. The more you can do this, the better it helps you to gain control.

Hence, getting professional advice or help may prove useful in dealing with challenging behavior. You can consider contacting the occupational therapist, psychiatrist or other such professionals around. Their experience of handling behavioral difficulty cases is sure to prove helpful. In extreme situations, the person in question may be referred to a psychologist nearby. There is hardly any dearth of specialists around and with a little research you will be able to find one in your locality. For better guidance, speak to people you know who have faced similar tribulations before, either with themselves or with family members.


Dr Prem Jagyasi

Dr Prem is an award winning strategic leader, renowned author, publisher and highly acclaimed global speaker. Aside from publishing a bevy of life improvement guides, Dr Prem runs a network of 50 niche websites that attracts millions of readers across the globe. Thus far, Dr Prem has traveled to more than 40 countries, addressed numerous international conferences and offered his expert training and consultancy services to more than 150 international organizations. He also owns and leads a web services and technology business, supervised and managed by his eminent team. Dr Prem further takes great delight in travel photography.

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