Archive | August, 2011

The uphill struggle

11 Aug

I’ve noticed over the years that building good will is easier with some people than with others. For some, a small courtesy is sufficient to create a positive impression that can weather powerful storms later on. With others, prolonged success can be wiped away in a moment.

It may come down to the basic attitude of the person in question with regard to the question of the glass being half-full or half-empty. Some seem to have a reflexive initial response that predisposes them to assume that new things or situations are to be viewed with skepticism or even disdain. An unhappy combination of “guilty until proven innocent” and the “not invented here” syndrome.

When dealing with such folks some adopt a manipulative strategy, doing everything possible to make it seem like they came up with the idea in question. Others resort to an apathetic strategy, simply not worrying about whether the person approves or not. A more sustainable middle ground might be to build in extra time so that ideas have time to be presented, rejected, reconsidered and eventually evaluated on their merits.

The “wait it out” strategy will still not result in as many positive outcomes as you might get dealing with a more consistently positive person, but your own expectations are something that you do have a degree of control over, so it can be better for your own mental health to quit beating yourself senseless against the rock of another person’s resistive disposition.