A few thoughts on handling assholes

As someone who’s received a good amount of hate mail, plenty of criticism and yes, even death threats, today I’d like to talk about how to handle assholes.

When someone acts mean or crudely to you, it’s because:

*He thinks you dislike him
*He is threatened by you
*He is a jerk to everyone
*You’ve given him a reason to dislike you

Here’s how to handle this situation:

1. Pause before you react. Think honestly about what he said. Don’t defend the accusation unless you’re being appropriately attached.

2. If you’ve clearly messed up, own up. No excuses. Simply offer a valid reason why you did what you did, even if it’s as simple as, “I wasn’t thinking.”

3. Ask for more detail. Fully understand what happened. Also ask him to help you avoid similar problems in the future.

4. Don’t over apologize. Thank him for his feedback.

Now, sometimes you’ll discover absolutely NO reason for someone’s cruelty. He’s just an asshole to everyone, you think.

Good! This means you won’t have to bother wasting much time or energy with this asshole. Try one of these options:

IGNORE IT. Smile and move on. I can’t emphasize the importance of smiling. Assholes thrive on your anger. So, when you’re faced with a one of them, smiling really, REALLY pisses them off.

DEFLECT IT. Either say, “Wow, you’re really upset about this,” or “You must be having a bad day.” Don’t get sucked into the “bait game.” Don’t get defensive or upset. Instead, responses like this reverse the direction of the conversation and show the jerk that you refuse to take ownership of the his problem.

Good luck. May the Schwartz be with you.

How do you deal with assholes?

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
Author/Speaker/That Guy with the Nametag

19 things you need to know about shyness

It’s pretty obvious that I’m not a shy person.

As such, I have no idea what it’s like walk into a room of strangers and be utterly crippled by communication apprehension.

But sometimes I wish I did.

See, I think it’s valuable for people – shy or not – to understand both sides approachability. That why I’ve read a lot of stuff on shyness over the years.

Here’s 19 of my favorite points:

1. Shyness affects approximately 40% of all people, according to bestselling author Bernardo Carducci.

2. To increase your attitude of approachability, assume and expect that people are friendly and will welcome you into their conversations and lives.

3. Social anxiety, a more clinical and severe form of shyness, is a combination of three influences: physical (what you feel), cognitive, (what you think), and behavioral, (what you do).

4. Shyness is the result of thinking that losses outweigh the gains in an encounter.

5. Your behavior will only change when you decide to change it.

6. All shy people have this in common: they’ve been called shy by other people.

7. You are what you are because of the way other people see you.

8. Change your attitude = change the way you act = changes the way people see you = change the way you see yourself.

9. Self-confidence grows from the way people responded to you in the past.

10. A cause of shyness is thinking, “Nobody likes what I like.” Really? Go online, type in what you like, and just WATCH how many like-minded people are out there!

11. Passion = approachable and attractive. So, find a way to get on the topic of your passion in every encounter. People need to see you talking about and doing what you’re really good at and passionate about.

12. Shy people believe that trouble in communication is inevitable and that any triumphs they’ve had have either been flukes or not their fault.

13. Avoid telling people that you’re shy or introverted. They will believe you and it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

14. Don’t Suffer a Toothache = I’m too tall, too shy, and too low in company hierarchy, too busy, too important. Don’t let these self-limiting beliefs stand in your way of approaching someone.

15. Being told repeatedly that “you only have one chance to make a first impression,” and other pressure/fear based warnings will cause someone to overly concern themselves with first impressions, and as a result, make mistakes.

16. Catastrophic Thinking – when you exaggerate the importance of some event, i.e., “This is the most important speech of my life! If I mess up, I’m finished!”

17. Black & White Thinking – oversimplifying events, perfectionism, i.e., “I have to ace this interview. I can’t mess anything up at all.”

18. Shy people excessively apologize to seek reassurance.

19. Shy people use “Safety Behaviors,” a form of avoidance that controls anxiety. Examples include: sitting in the back or arriving early so they’re not the center of attention when they walk in the room.

On a scale from 1-10, how shy are you?

To enlighten us extroverts, post your three best nuggest about shyness here.

* * * * *
Scott Ginsberg
Author/Speaker/That Guy with the Nametag

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68 lessons learned from 2006

1. Health comes first.
2. Press the off button.
3. Drink more water.
4. Take breaks every 50 minutes.
5. Do breathing exercises.
6. Don’t let anyone monopolize your time.
7. Read more fiction.
8. Take off a Monday or Friday here and there.
9. Write on day one, edit on day two.
10. Ignore the 10; stick with the 90.
11. Age only matters if you’re a cheese.
12. Stop hanging around people who are doing nothing with their lives.
13. Take more walks.
14. You can always wear sandals.
15. Don’t accept every invitation.
16. Everybody has to draw a line on their approachability.
17. Travel without plans.
18. The media doesn’t care about you.
19. Broaden the diversity of your music library.
20. Question more things.
21. Inspiration comes unannounced.
22. It’s not the years; it’s the mileage.
23. Media shots come in threes.
24. Forward, visual thinking works.
25. Goals work.
26. Stop using the word “networking.”
27. Match music to environment.
28. Anger is the enemy.
29. You don’t need to be a slave to your cell phone and email.
30. Once you discover you don’t need the world’s box, you’re set free.
31. Writing is the basis of all wealth.
32. Make more lists.
33. Reframing works.
34. Tell your friends that you love them more often.
35. World Series games are the greatest ever.
36. Ask yourself two questions: “What did you write today?” and “Is everything you know written down somewhere?”
37. Nothing makes bank tellers happier than a dozen free root beer floats.
38. Professional photos are worth it.
39. Free ebooks are the greatest.
40. Video is the future.
41. Disarm immediate preoccupation.
42. Smaller, more frequent feedings.
43. It’s ok to walk softly.
44. Careful how many ribs you eat in one sitting.
45. Some people are just idiots.
46. A person will act cruel or mean to you because: (a) he thinks you don’t like him, (b) he feels threatened by you, (c) you did something to upset him, or (d) he’s an asshole to everybody.
47. You can only work a job that sucks for so long.
48. Pay attention to the road.
49. Smokers suck.
50. Smile on camera.
51. Don’t rehearse so much.
52. When meeting a potential client for the first time, make sure you sit down at the right table and not with a strange man named Rajesh who has no idea who the hell you are (hypothetically)
53. Smile for three seconds when you walk in the room.
54. Get more massages.
55. Don’t drive an hour both ways at 6 AM in the middle of Florida just to do an interview on some worthless WB news show that nobody watched and got you no sales or bookings.
56. Kookaburra licorice is the greatest.
57. It’s ok to go short, but not TOO short.
58. Stress is really, really powerful.
59. Audio products don’t sell.
60. Christopher Walken is the greatest.
61. Keep it alive.
62. 8 words or less.
63. Is what you’re doing right now consistent with your #1 goal?
64. There are only a few select people who know exactly what you’re going through. Stick with them.
65. It’s great to have a spot.
66. As you become busier and more successful, you begin to value your time a whole lot more.
67. Interaction, not interruption.
68. Marketing and dating is the exact same thing.

What lessons did you learn in 2006?

Post your list here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
Author/Speaker/That Guy with the Nametag

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