Types of communication vary with many people using many different types of communication to match situations. However, when a person consistently uses one type of communication such as passive-aggressive, it can ruin relationships and sabotage progress and productivity.
If you missed the first post on What is Passive-Aggressive Communication & Behavior, Click Here.
How to Handle Passive-Aggressive People
1) Know your own boundaries: Passive-aggressive people be-friend or find others who won’t call them out or who have weak boundaries themselves.
2) Make sure that you follow through on your boundaries. For example: If someone is late to a dinner date, let them know that you will start dinner without them. Maybe you are going to meet at the theater, so let them know that you will go into the show without them.
3) Identify the behavior for what it is: Hostile. Example: They ask you for your input or opinion and then when you answer keep questioning your answer and then when you get frustrated, they say, “ok, ok, gosh, sorry, you don’t have to get upset”. When they were the ones poking at you in the first place.
4) Avoid interacting with them if possible. If you must engage or communicate or work with someone then limit your communication with them to just the facts or one specific incident or item.
5) Practice Assertive Communication yourself. Assertive communication means asking and talking in a non-reactive & respectful manner.
6) Practice Active Listening skills. When people feel heard and validated they are more open in general to you and solutions.
When you have a sense of confidence about yourself and you are collaborative, coming from a place where you want to help them and yourself come to a mutually beneficial solution, (i.e. win/win)- you are more likely to get somewhere with the passive-aggressive personality.
Here is Part 1 on what Passive-aggressive behaviors and communication look like.