A frequent source of conflict is people not behaving as we think they should. Many of us set about trying to change the other person, and get incredibly stressed about how unreasonable they are being. Does that sound familiar?

Sophie Morris, a wellbeing and resilience coach from Essential Focus Coaching says that we can never really change people. We can compromise and come to an agreement but what if this is not always possible?. How do we cope when all efforts to reach an understanding or compromise have come to nothing? The most effective way is to change our mindset.

While we do not have the power within us to change others, we do have the power to change how we feel about them or their actions. This reprogramming of thought patterns, triggers and reactions is a key tool in reducing stress and helping people move forward.

“We can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses”

Abraham Lincoln

Here are a few tips to help you reframe YOUR ATTITUDE

1.   Step back and take a bird’s eye view of the situation
It may well be that with a bit of distance you are able to understand the other person’s behaviour or point of view more clearly. Their behaviour could be coming from a place of pain or unhappiness. Maybe they don’t know how to express themselves clearly.

2.   Ask yourself if your reaction is helpful
Is your anger or stress at the situation causing you sleepless nights; or is dwelling on the situation having an adverse effect on other areas of your life? You will never get this time back, so try to use it more positively.

3.   Be proud of your behaviour
Just because others are acting infuriatingly or aggressively towards you, does not mean that you must react in the same way.

4.   Do not give the other person the power to make you feel bad
You are in control of how you feel about any situation. Remember to choose how it affects you. You must look after yourself.

5.   Listen to their point of view
See if it has any merits. Maybe there are things that you have not considered, which change your understanding of the situation.

6.   Stand your ground
You have a right to say no, not to agree with others and you also have a right to not be coerced into something that you don’t want to do, or makes you uncomfortable. However, respect other people’s right to a different opinion or way of doing things.

7.  Set yourself clear boundaries
It is okay not to have to see people who cause you stress, or limit the amount of time you spend with them, whoever they are. Remember you are allowed to say no.

8.   Take yourself out of the situation
If this is not physically possible, take a few deep breaths to reset mentally.

Changing your mindset can be hard, but just like with any new habit, practice will make it easier and soon it will feel automatic.  If you want further help on creating change and reducing stress in your life then check out Sophie at Essential Focus Coaching.