Chapter 8. Managing Other People's Emotions

In This Chapter

  • Controlling your reactions to others

  • Influencing other people's emotions

  • Dealing with obnoxious people

  • Maintaining relationships with difficult friends and relatives

You can't easily change the behavior of other people. You can try all kinds of things that often amount to nagging, pushing, or cajoling — usually to no avail. You may tend to tell the other person why you want him to change his behavior. However, by focusing more on the other person, and less on your own needs, wants, and desires, you can get closer to the desired change in the other person.

This chapter looks at why you can more effectively influence the behavior of others by managing your own emotions first. Then, I share some specific techniques that you can use to manage people you know, as well as the strangers you encounter. You can fit these techniques into your own personal style. Keep in mind the things you've tried in the past that worked and use what you've already figured out to help shape these suggestions.


Use these suggestions for common, everyday encounters with normal-functioning people. If the person you're dealing with has a serious mental health problem of some kind, consult a legally qualified psychiatrist, psychologist, or social worker.

Changing How You React to Others

The first step in managing the emotions of others is to understand your own emotions. Understanding where you're coming from — your needs, wants, and desires — can help ...

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