It happens to everyone. You’re sitting in a cafe, and a strange man comes up to you and compliments your clothes. Or you are in an office meeting and someone asks that you clean up your workspace more often. No matter what type of situation you are in, the feeling is the same – anxious and maybe a little sweaty. These situations can range from widely uncomfortable to just ruining the moment, but they can all be dealt with. Uncomfortable situations will happen throughout life, so it’s a matter of learning how to handle them appropriately.
Let’s say you are in an uncomfortable situation that involves politeness. For example, your friend’s mother is in town, and she just served you something you hate and now you don’t know what to do. In an uncomfortable situation like this, it’s best to be polite and try to eat some of it; if it’s absolutely terrible, play around with your food and then quickly offer to put the dishes away, saving yourself from having to eat it all and having the person notice. Situations like these have options; you can decide to be a little brave and tell the person how you really feel in a polite manner, or you can just hide it and avoid the subject.
In uncomfortable situations at work, the key is to think about what you say or do before you do it. This will save your relationships with coworkers, your job, and possibly your position. For example, let’s say in your break room, a colleague asks you to clean up after yourself because you never do. If you were to be aggressive about the situation, the colleague and everyone else around you will now think you are a hostile person, and that label may stick. If you say something positive and offer feedback about the way they asked you, your job and people’s opinions about you will likely stay positive. When it comes to work situations, it’s often best to be direct but polite; this is your field of work where you make money, and everyone wants to protect it at all costs.
Moving into a deeper level of uncomfortable situations, if you are in a public place and alone and someone is making you feel uncomfortable in a way that poses a threat to you, be cautious of how you react. It’s best to be calm and rational during situations like this. Let’s say you are alone in a park and a strange man comes up and says you have pretty eyes in a creepy way, and you begin to feel uncomfortable. The best thing to do is thank them, stand and walk away toward a more corded area. It’s not good to confront them or make them feel that it was anything special as this could lead them to believe that it impacted you.
The important thing to note about uncomfortable situations is that it’s all in how you deal with it and you shouldn’t let it bother you. Often, it’s best not to react in an angry or aggressive manner and to try to be as polite as possible.