Stop Being Passive-Aggressive
Have you been procrastinating duties deliberately, isolating yourself from people, giving people backhanded compliments, remaining silent, or dismissing people? Well, you may not believe it; these can be signs of passive-aggression. It is a character that most people develop when they are not genuinely interested in something or someone, and they do not want to confront them. Also, others become passive-aggressive as a result of emotional distress, whether general stress or personality disorders.
Regardless of how or why you are experiencing the pattern, it’s not something you want to continue. According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), it may eventually result in Passive-Aggressive Personality Disorder (PAPD). It may entirely ruin your social life and work-life or, at the very least, mar once-was loving relationships.
But you know what? It is a behavioral trait that you can overcome by consistently embracing the useful mitigation tips I am about to share with you. Whether or not you are a victim to PAPD, this piece will be worth your time because anyone can fall into passive-aggression.
When you are passive-aggressive, one of the best practices to suppress its effects and eventually overcome it entirely is to avoid unhealthy confrontations. It is because fights will not solve the matter—it will go from bad to worse. Note that suppressing harmful confrontations doesn’t call for silence. It implies coming up with working strategies to handle conversations, lest they all turn wild and awkward!
But how do you get there?
How to Challenge the Passive-Aggressive Pattern at Home and Work
Like any other trait, a passive-aggressive pattern is never easy to quit at first. Still, with positivity and consistency, I can assure you many have pulled through it. To break it down, let’s consider how you need to react in the heat of the moment, and measures you can embrace to pull through it in the long run.
How to Overcome Passive-Aggressive Pattern in Real-Time
- Admit the behavior
Before going any further, you need to understand that you are passive-aggressive and know why you need to quit. It motivates you to make sound decisions, even when you feel it is contrary to your emotions. Emotional sacrifice is never easy!
- Be patient; good things take time!
It will take some considerable time. It will take time, endurance, and effort to get there. And that is why motivation is very crucial in this endeavor.
- Ensure the other party is positive
Before beginning a conversation, especially one that you perceive might raise some disagreements, be sure that the other party is in a positive headspace. Since you are hot-tempered, you can almost conclude that having an adverse party in a conversation will escalate everything to worse. Also, in such a case, be sure to have a neutral party.
- Remain calm throughout
Whether it is a conversation you are having at home or in an office setting, make sure you remain composed and do not overreact. When an idea doesn’t seem to turn your way, hold on until it is your turn to respond. But perhaps the other party may stir you up, and arouse your anger, but do you remember the overall goal? Sure! Overcoming passive-aggression calls for a strong spirit.
- Express your ideas clearly and don’t make assumptions
A study conducted by Harvard Business Review concluded that skilled managers always seek to understand issues in detail without making any assumptions. Now, this is also very key if we are to be fair with passive-aggression. Seek for clarifications in case what was said is unclear to you or biased in some way. This way, you will avoid pushing yourself into a depression just because you misinterpreted the said information.
- Weigh ideas rationally
In some instances, the other party may not even be the source of conflict. Perhaps it’s just the subject at hand is tricky to handle. So what? Brainstorm it! Think like a mediator. Discuss the issue open-mindedly. Weigh both sides of the matter and come up with agreeable conclusions.
- Embrace correction positively
Accepting correction doesn’t weaken you; it shows your positivity towards embracing change and making a difference. However, passive-aggression will tell you to hold onto your instincts and stick to them. Don’t let pride get in the way. So don’t let it drain your joy or be the reason you cannot grow by embracing change.
How to overcome passive aggression ultimately
Like we said in the beginning, this is a journey. The tips we have shared in the previous section can significantly transform your character in the long run. Consider the tips below in your daily life, and you’ll eventually get it done.
- Have time for reflection
Set some time either daily or just after a specific duration where you can think through your progress. During this time, you can have a list of your wins (it’s essential for self-motivation), and perhaps list areas you need more attention. As Forbes explains, to achieve goals, write them down.
- Let the past go
Maybe the past has been quite dark, but don’t hold on to it because it can only make the present dull, or even drain your future. Forgive those who wronged you and keep working to make peace with them.
- Work on your etiquette
Communication is not all about passing information. The language you use when communicating with the other party determines significantly how impactful the message will be perceived. So, be sure to use the correct wording when talking to workmates or with your family members at home. Listen, validate, empathize, and mirror back what the other person is saying to you. Stay present. Watch your facial expressions and body language. Sometimes that speaks more than your silence and words.
You can quit being passive-aggressive and fully transform into an outgoing, lovely person. It all begins at self-acceptance and the zeal to replace it with positive energy. I entirely agree with Dalai Lama when he says, “In order to carry a positive action, we must develop a positive vision here.”
You can overcome it!