How to Deal with Rude People

A few years ago, I was at a nail salon getting my nails done when a disgruntled lady walked in.  I sensed from the look on her face and body language that we was probably not going to be very pleasant to be around.  Someone helped her, she sat down, and proceeded to tell the manicurist exactly what she wanted.  Long story short, the salon didn’t offer what the lady wanted, but the manicurist suggested something else that was close to the lady’s request.  To our surprise, the lady started to scream at the poor manicurist, insulted the manicurist’s language skills (she was from a different country), and stormed out.  Everyone in the salon was in shock.

If you’re like me (and most people), you’ve had many run-ins with people who were just plain rude.  It’s just another part of life, another aspect that we just have to learn to deal with. Sometimes, one rude action from someone (even a stranger!) can just ruin my entire day! Don’t let this happen to you. Here are some tips on how to deal with rude people:

  1. Stay calm. Just brush it off.  There is no need to let one person’s superficial actions or comments ruin your day.  Don’t let anyone decide how your day is going to be. You don’t have to have anyone’s approval to have a great day.
  2. Don’t take it personally. Rudeness from another person isn’t a projection of you; it’s a projection of that person.  It’s easy to blame ourselves when dealing with a rude person: “He cut me off because I’m a bad driver,” or “She shoved me because I was in her way.” What caused this person to be rude most likely has a deeper, more personal cause than what meets the eye. As the saying goes “Rudeness is the weak person’s imitation of strength.”
  3. Maybe it’s just part of their personality. I am a very sarcastic person and as a result, I make a lot of sarcastic remarks.  I only make these comments to be funny and my friends understand that. However, those who don’t know me very well can take my sarcasm as being rude.  Perhaps the person that is rude doesn’t realize it or actually isn’t trying to be rude at all.
  4. If the person is constantly being rude, confront them about it. Pull them aside and let them know how you’re feeling.  Don’t point fingers and start blaming them for anything. Simply say “I know you’re not trying to be rude, but when you make those comments about my hair, it doesn’t make me feel good.” Usually, people don’t like to be perceived as rude and more than likely, they will discontinue their rude behavior.

In the end, an incident with a rude person will be filed into the back of your mind.  It won’t bother you as much in a couple weeks, or maybe you will even forget about it. What kind of incident with a rude person have you experienced, and how did you handle it?

Vivian Ta

Vivian is a running fanatic and founder of The Daily Runner, a website dedicated to inspire people all over the world to start running. Currently pursuing her Ph.d in Experimental Psychology at the University of Texas at Arlington, Vivian is also a certified fitness instructor. Her fitness and wellness column is featured on MCG every other Wednesday. Connect with Vivian on Twitter @dailyrunnerpage and on Facebook Facebook.