Arrogance is a set of behaviors in which people think and act as if they are better than others, often expressing an overrated sense of self-importance, self-confidence and self-worth. These individuals can be quite disagreeable to deal with. Therefore, one recommendation is to avoid arrogant people at all costs. Unfortunately, you may already have someone who is arrogant in your life whether at home, work or school. For these unavoidable circumstances, there are a few strategies which can help in coping with arrogance.
Focus on the Goals
Arrogant individuals who are in leadership or superior positions can be particularly overbearing. It is best to not get confrontational or directly oppositional. Organizational psychologist Stanley B. Silverman, Ph.D., whose research focuses on arrogance in work environments, highlights that arrogant bosses and team leaders are not very receptive to feedback or critique. Therefore, from the outset, you must clearly stress the importance of the goals and objectives that need to be met as well as clearly define your role in the group. In so doing, you can place the focus on the task at hand and away from the individuals.
Get Their Input
If you are team members on equal footing, then Silverman suggests having a discussion from the very beginning that starts with the following words: "I want us to have a good working relationship. Let's talk about some ideas that will help us work better together." Hopefully, this may have some effect on decreasing any friction that may occur from their criticisms, which can be many, as well as increase the performance of the team.
Don't Be a Doormat
Arrogant individuals do not readily respect the feelings of others. Those who interact with them may find themselves being belittled, criticized and put down. To avoid being seriously affected by this, you must be firm in who you are and what you stand for. Do not allow what may appear to be an overpowering personality to dominate yours and take advantage of you.
Keep It Short and Sweet
If you do decide to express an opposing view to those held by an arrogant person, then it is best to state it as briefly as possible. Psychologist Roya Rad in her article "How to Deal With Self-Centered People" states that arrogant individuals are more likely to tune out opinions and views that differ from or conflict with theirs.
Be Tolerant and Compassionate
Being directly confrontational with an arrogant person will get you nowhere except maybe extremely frustrated. However, Rad points out that it is best to be tolerant of the self-absorption of arrogant people, who require more understanding of the root causes of their behavior. In many instances, arrogance is used as a means of dealing with deeply rooted internal struggles.
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