Updated: Jul 20, 2019
Toxic People Are Toxic
I’m just going to say it, people who are jerks are just jerks. There, I said it.
Think about it. When you been verbally assaulted by a mean person, a.k.a. a jerk, have you felt really good? Me? Never. The problem is, on planet earth we will encounter mean and rude people usually once a week at a minimum. I’m moving to Mars. No mean people live there. Well, no one lives there.
I’ll never forget driving my 87-year-old mother-in-law to a doctor’s appointment. As I was turning into the parking lot, the car behind me was so close to my bumper that it was just crazy! I pulled into my parking spot and the car behind me honked and sped off. Yes, I had my turn signal on…LOL. The person waved at me with their middle finger. Needless to say, my 87-year-old mother-in-law was really freaked out. I spent the rest of the day with homicidal thoughts toward that rude driver. Then I realized that homicide was not an option…LOL. I thought to myself, did I do something wrong? Who knows? Breathe Michael.
I get it. From time to time I lose it and I’m rude. I've learned that poor people skills, being a jerk most of the time is a big problem for those who hope to be successful in life.
Think about it. If you are a student, where are you headed…your future. People skills are very important right now in your life and hugely important in the work world...your future.
Today, the workplace is very much about relationships and interactions. Stanford, Harvard and the Carnegie Institute have concluded that 85% of our career success comes from our soft and people skills.
Remember, we can’t control the rude behavior which comes from other people who are around us. That’s why some days I’m ready to move to Mars. However, first and foremost, I can choose to be me. Who is am I? I’m kind. I’m caring. I’m other-centered versus self-centered, and I’m considerate. This is who I am. No, I’m not perfect. If I were, I’d be walking on water. Nope, that’s not going to happen. But most of my students and my co-workers would say I’m pretty darn good in the area of people skills.
Think about it. Isn’t it cool when that Starbucks barista says, “How’s your day? I bet it’s pretty good because the person who was 5 customers in front of you bought the 5 people behind them the drink of their choice.” OMG! This happened to me once and I was so freaked! Wow, I thought to myself. How crazy kind!
Ok, so a huge part of becoming valuable and success finding you is people skills. So, let’s take a closer look at some simple people skills:
1. BEING POLITE
2. SHOWING KINDNESS
3. CARING FOR AND ABOUT OTHERS
6. OTHER-CENTERED VS. SELF-CENTERED
Practice these people skills daily. Turn them into who you are and who others see you as.
I have a quote in my house that says, “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.” Pretty cool. I like it. Good quote. However, this little saint kills it on the challenge to have GREAT people skills:
“People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.
What are the people skills that come very naturally for you? Now, what are the people skills you need to grow in?