- Analyze the Situation
When a co-worker is making you want to flip out, take a deep breath and try to analyze why that person irritates you so much, There must be something that they are doing that is just getting under your skin. Okay, so we all have a few annoying personality quirks, and you may be over reacting to the ones that your coworker is presenting. Before reacting and making the situation difficult to work with daily, ask yourself if it’s worth the risk of igniting further conflict.
- Assert Yourself
Sometimes, you can address an annoying co-worker’s behavior directly by speaking up at the right moment. This approach is useful for confronting most types of annoying behaviors, such as chatty co-workers. If you’re in this situation, just say, “I’m sorry, but I’ve got to finish something up. Can we talk later?” If the chatterbox persists, be firm. Remind him, “I have to get back to work now.” Keeping yourself in line is one way of keeping those around you in check as well.
- Don’t Overreact
Persistent negative behavior poses stiffer challenges, but you shouldn’t overreact to it. For example, it may feel good to say something about a co-worker who’s slacking off. Still, if the situation doesn’t affect your own productivity, let it go! If the boss is not reacting to the situation at hand, then maybe you should not be that concerned about it either. By complaining and reacting to the situation, you may be continuing to add to the behavior that the coworker is displaying.
- Focus on Behavior, Not Blame
It helps to focus on changing behavior, rather than assigning blame. When conflict arises, find a quiet area to discuss the issue with the other person. Summarize what’s happened, and stress your wish to work well with her. Then ask, “What can I do to help us get along better?” By showing a willingness to listen, you’re less likely to evoke a defensive reaction from her, allowing you to move toward finding some areas of common ground.
- Separate Yourself
At times, you’ll reach a point where the situation becomes unbearable, no matter how hard you attempt to ignore the bane of your existence. If your boss won’t address the problem, a physical separation from the irritating colleague is the only viable option. Try taking different lunch breaks, for example, or see if it’s possible to switch office locations. The less time that you spend with this person, the less aggravated you’re likely to feel.