How do you change the way other people behave?
Short answer, you can’t.
But have you ever noticed that when they behave a particular way you behave in an equally predictable way?
The thing is we all get stuck in a particular way of behaving. And by the time we’re in our 30s our repertoire has become pretty narrow. Not quite hardwired, but pretty close. We get so good at what we practise.
Take for instance the people in your life that are always losing things. And you keep finding them. Or replacing them. Or take the person who keeps making mistakes and you keep fixing them. Or the partner who’s just too lazy to help around the house so you do it all. Well they’re going to just keep losing things, the mistakes will continue and you’ll keep doing all the work. Because there’s no real consequence for the other person that will force them to change. No reason for them to do something different.
When we behave in a predictable way we actually keep the problem going. Because it allows the other person to keep getting away with their less than ideal behaviour. It’s like a dance.
But what happens if we change things?
We stop fixing things, finding things, doing things?
Well my guess is the other person is going to have to do something different, aren’t they. Mightn’t like it. Might chuck the biggest tantrum because you’ve upset the status quo. You’re no longer doing what’s expected. But hey, what have you got to lose? You’re not happy with it anyway. My bet is you’ve got everything to gain.
As Ghandi said, be the change you want to see.
Want something different?
Why not make a change?
“If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do.”