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Monday, December 9, 2019

How To Work Productively With A Toxic Person

How To Deal With A Toxic Person In Your Professional Sphere

By: Dominique Miller
(Trinity SS Wellness/Dominique Does Life Podcast&Blog)

For a personalized coaching plan, please reach out at @be_well_trinity on Facebook, or simply join my coaching platform for free at:

When I studied martial arts,I learned a key piece of information, which has really assisted me in building a platform of successful action against toxic people and narcissists.
The guiding principle of Hapkidois to never use your power to start fights,but to end them decisively,while conserving energyfor a prolonged conflict, yet planning for a short victory (i.e. expect the best, but plan for the worst).
In essence, we use the other party's strength, size, skill and expertise against them. The good thing about doing this with a narcissistor other toxic personis that:
* they thinkthey have way more expertise than they actually have,
* they
do not possess empathy or compassion, while we do,
* they
cannotcorrectly engagetheir critical thinking​ ​if they even have those skills to begin
* We will use their perceived strengths,which really only exist in their own minds,and our own ability to think critically against them.
* We deflect
the effort and energy they expendand reroute it right back at them, to get them winded and back them into a corner without seeming in any way aggressive (see: the law of threefold return).
* This isn't to spare their feelings,this is to allow them enough rope to hang themselves. Italk about the​ 3P's​ aka​ The​​ Ned Flanders Approach, in my podcast, Dominique Does Life, on the free Spreaker podcast app (you can weigh in live, via the live “chat” section of the free Spreaker app), Spotify, Google Podcasts, Podbean, iHeartRadio, iTunes Podcasts, and wherever else podcasts are available.
* You NEVERpublicly accuse toxic folks, narcissists, sociopaths or other cluster b’sor potential cluster b’s of anything. It's alwaysbest to use the 3P's. I personally have made many of these mistakes myself, in addition to witnessing clients who have inadvertently committed them. In so doing, I have, personally, epically fouled things up, by making public accusations, threats, and talking about how things the toxic person has done and/or said have affected me; I have never, however, fouled things up while engaging3 P's/The Ned Flanders Approach--same goes for my clients.
* Present facts, never feelings
* Always(publicly) give the toxic person the benefit of the doubt,even if, privately, you know—or strongly suspect that they are absolutely full of it.
Never​ ​engage in a back and forth with the toxic person
* Always​ ​allow them to explain themselves and talk themselves into a cornerto those who are listening, and then meet them with inquisitiveness.
Neverallow the toxic personto initiate a victim role, or to save face
* Neverbring up a personal impact their behavior has had on you.They will turn it back around to them being the victim, and you will get nowherewith that.
They have already been building up a narrative behind your back--don't give them the opportunity to do so to your face.
* Oftentimes, this narrative has to do with discrediting what you say by bringing up your supposedly unstable emotional state.
* They WANTyou to appear angry, a bully, and emotional. You can neverlet emotions come into play. Save those for later on at home, when you’re alone or with your very closest, most trusted loved ones who will support you.
* If you have to bring up something they've done wrong, please keep in mind that they are already ten steps ahead of youwith their "I'm the real victim here/so and so [insert name here, possibly your own, possibly somebody else's, possibly several names--what matters is that things are never the toxic person's fault] is crazy, lazy, or abusive" narrative.
*This is important​ ​because people you need on your side (ie people you're trying to save from harm from that narcissist or toxic person) are listening, and no matter how much you tell those people flat out that ‘Ed the narcissist is a fraud,’ you will always look like chicken little, saying the sky is falling, until they see things for themselves, due to the groupthinkthat even people on the fringes of the toxic person's network are likely a part of.
* Public shaming NEVERworkson a narcissist​ ​or toxic person. It will only backfire on you. * Your time is better spent by engaging the critical thinking of those around the toxic person or narcissist, leaving emotion and appeals to conscience out of it completely.
* While the effect of counteracting their narrative is great, that should never be your only goal.
* Building your own narrativeis key (see above, re-engaging people's critical thinking) * Your goal is to build the narrative of objective truth
The 3P’s/The Ned Flanders Approach: * The 3 P’s:
* Polite,
* Positive
* Persistence
* What does this look like?
* Being politely inquisitive (listen to my podcast for specific examples)
* Being positive and remaining offhand and simply inquisitive, helpful and concerned—remember, we are playing to an audience and an effect—at least a portion of this audience has been exposed to brainwashing and groupthink.
* Making sure you NEVERanswer the toxic person’s accusations
* Responding to any accusations with calm inquisitiveness—like a teacher to a child(ex: “Gosh, it sounds like you’re very interested in talking about x. I can appreciate your enthusiasm and would like to invite you to turn that same enthusiasm toward the meeting we’re having right now. Moving on to agenda item b: is there any discussion?”This even goes for when the toxic person​ ​name calls, puts people down or begins going off on a self-aggrandizing, vaguely related or even a totally unrelated tangent)
* Responding​ ​to any name-calling or attempts at character assassination or self-aggrandizement with calm, polite, positive inquisitiveness.You needn’t be smiley or act like a suck-up—just a simple “gosh, I notice you speaking when Al was speaking just now. I’d like everyone to have a turn to speak. Al, you have the floor. Go ahead...Or...I can understand why you might be feeling passionate. Even so, I’m going to have to insist that we speak to each other without engaging in name-calling. Let’s turn some of that passion toward item 4 on our agenda (then keep speaking firmly and just loudly and quickly enough to telegraph to everyone that you won’t brook nonsense, doing so assertively, even if the toxic person continues to attempt to speak over you. Remaining calm and turning your eye contact and every iota of your focus and energy off of the toxic personand on to your co-workers/meeting attendees, and showing signs of paying attention to, and being interested in what they have to say—sometimes simply holding up one finger like you would with an errant child works in addition to this technique, but be sure to use that little added extra ONLYwith genuinely toxic people,and only in select circumstances.)

* What the 3 P’s or The Ned Flanders Approach is not:
* Doing a touchdown dance
* Getting in anyone’s face
* Rubbing the fact that we are right in the toxic person’s (or anyone else’s) faces 

* Being emotional
* Behaving erratically
* Interrupting
* Wrestling in the mud with the toxic person
* Going by the toxic person’s rules/fighting on the toxic person’s home court 

* Playing defense/defending/explaining yourself
* Allowing the toxic person to dictate topics of discussion

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