The Necessity of Difficult People
By Randy Peyser

Difficult people may be just the boost you need in order to grow. According to Chamalu, a shaman from the rainforest of Bolivia, the presence of a difficult person will catalyze you to stretch beyond your comfort zone and take some form of action you normally wouldnt take. When you find yourself pushed past your limits by a difficult person, you are more willing to create changes in your life, and thereby, step further into your power. A prayer among Chamalus people extends an invitation to difficult people to enter their lives so that they may learn and grow from their interactions with them. In our society we dont have to look that far to find difficult people; they exist in most work environments. From the critical boss, to the snitty co-worker, to the complaining client, to the uptight manager whose expectations can never be met, we are surrounded by difficult people.

To deal with difficult people, first realize that they are here to show you something about yourself. If you consciously or unconsciously already feel like a victim, a difficult person will push your poor me Im a victim button. For example, if a difficult co-worker is sabotaging your best efforts and as a result you know youre not going to receive the validation you deserve, you might want to place blame on this person, believing this situation is entirely his or her fault and that you had nothing to do with it.

Instead of focusing on blaming the other, think about how this difficult person might have been sent here just to help you understand something about yourself. View the difficult person as your teacher and ask yourself, What has s/he come here to teach me? Listen inward for the answer. Keep the focus on you, not on him or her.

If s/he has come into your life so that you can stop being a victim, one of the best kinds of action you can take is to express yourself -- simply and clearly state your truth. State what you are willing to have or not have, or to do or not do, in terms of relating with this person.

As much as possible, speak from your heart instead of your head. Be open to hearing his or her truth. Then bless this powerful teacher in your life. Once you speak your truth and have blessed this person and the experience in which you have both engaged, often the difficult person or circumstance will disappear.

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