Do you know people who seem to thrive off of drama? They carry on so much that they make themselves sick? I like to call this phenomenon post dramatic stress disorder.
I’ve tried in all areas of my life to avoid this dreaded disease. But some love its contamination. Really it’s just a foil to cover the insecurity and the emptiness in their lives. Drama distracts them from their pathetic existence.
PDSD really likes to rear its ugly head during the holidays. So how do you stay drama-free you may wonder? Here are a few things I do to cut the theatrics:
1.) Be secure: People love to gossip and if you just so happen to be the object of malicious slander, you will need to fortify yourself. The best reaction in this case is none at all. People are allowed their opinions. And just because they “said it” doesn’t make it so. You show your security when you resist constantly defending yourself. When you know who you are, nothing can shake your foundation.
2.) Learn to handle them: You can’t avoid people who suffer from this condition ALL the time. Sometimes those very people reside in your own family or his. And many times you work with them. Therefore, when you HAVE to be around them, it is best to keep the conversation light, cordial, and on general terms. Smile and greet “the room” so that no one can claim you did not acknowledge him or her. I was once accosted by a relative because I failed to give her a picture of my baby. I simply replied “No, I did not” and left it at that, which left her speechless.
3.) Know their motive: People who suffer from PDSD ALWAYS have a motive. Usually it is to get under your skin, ruin your day, steal your joy, usurp some of your security for a temporary high, to break your inner peace, or all of the above. Understanding this enables you to handle their attacks in a nonreactive way. Do not allow them to use you for their sick and twisted entertainment purposes.
4.) Don’t be surprised by their hostility: Do you REALLY expect them to behave any differently? Would you be upset if a shark bit your arm off? Initially yes, but after you think about it, that’s what they do when they feel threatened. Not to mention, it was only behaving in the only manner that it knows how–as a shark. In their (the poison people, not the shark’s) minds you represent a threat to them because you (fill in the blank ). Sharks bite, bottom line. If you want to reduce your chances of being eaten alive, stay out of shark infested waters. Or at least don’t dive in smelling like bait.
5.) Silence is golden: Oftentimes when drama comes my way, I exercise the Miranda rights and remain silent. Nothing makes a drama queen or king feel worse than when they are ignored. By choosing this tactic you keep the power in your hand. You also lessen the chances of anything that you say being used against you in the court of public opinion. Know in advance that you can’t reason with the unreasonable so there is no point in trying to get the clueless to see the light. They won’t.
Feel free to add your tips below. Here’s to staying drama and sucker free this holiday season!