By Frosty Wooldridge

If you work in a school, company, fast food joint, office or any other organization that forces you into contact with other people—you must deal with one or two characters that drive you nuts. They may be arrogant, rude, aggressive or impudent.

They offer you frustrations and, at the same time, lessons on your journey through life.

Did you hear of the older lady driving a Cadillac who aimed her automobile toward a slot in the parking lot near the store? Seconds before she pulled into the space, a young man zipped into her spot in his shiny sports car.

She yelled, “That was my spot you just took.”

“Tough lady,” he said. “I’m younger, quicker and drive a faster car. Deal with it!”

“I will young man,” she said as she slammed her Caddie into reverse, then, back into “Drive.”

She crashed into the back of his sports car—pulverizing it. She backed up and smashed into it two more times.

“You just ruined my car,” he screamed. “Why did you do that?”

“Because I’m old, rich and insured,” she yelled. “Besides, you needed a lesson in manners.”

In life, we find who people who march into our lives become friends, acquaintances and/or irritations; depending on their propensities. Some teach us lessons. They may bring us laughter, joy and anger.

What do you do when someone enters your life that drives you nuts? How do you deal with an obnoxious office mate, sibling, parent or teaching colleague?
First of all, you must realize that living on this planet offers you a “spiritual boot camp” that tests your ability to grow from one task to the next. Every person along the way offers new challenges and lessons.

We maintain responsibility for our own story. We may dance with a weak or wounded self-concept. We may need to be right all the time or protect our image. Or, we can become victims.

You enjoy choice of response to people who irritate you. If your mother irritates you, the easiest method for you to come to terms: sit down with her, talk to her, set the guidelines by which you expect her to act around you and make sure she appreciates your boundaries.

With an office mate that bothers you: sit down, ask them about their passions, their frustrations and their goals. After they provide you with their priorities, you can better gage your response to their actions. Additionally, by showing you care about their lives, you can spell out what you like and don’t like as to interaction in the office.

You must welcome the new you. Become available to something more. You must forgive others who lack balance. Choose a new perspective. You must give them a chance. You may speak in a new and conscious manner.

This topic reminds me of the story of a very irritating and perfectionist Italian mother who brought up her son Alberto by herself. She demanded that everything be “just so.” During dinner, Alberto loved to talk with his grandfather, but as the old man grew more infirmed, he broke a soup bowl because of his palsy. She banished him to the kitchen to eat alone.

Thereafter, Alberto hurried his dinner so he could talk with his grandfather in the kitchen. One night, the old man broke another bowl. At that point, she relegated him to a wooden bowl, which demoted him to the lowest rung on the social ladder.

One night, Alberto failed to show up for dinner. When she found him in his bedroom, he sat on the bed carving a piece of wood into a bowl.

“Why didn’t you come to dinner tonight?” she asked. “Don’t you know it’s rude to miss dinner?”

“Sorry mama,” said Alberto.

“What are you carving?” she asked.

“I am carving a bowl for you when you get to grandfather’s age,” said Alberto.

From that day onward, the mother invited grandfather back to the table to share in the family dinner and mentor her son Alberto.

Author's Bio: 

Frosty Wooldridge possesses a unique view of the world, cultures and families in that he has bicycled around the globe 100,000 miles, on six continents and nine times across the United States in the past 35 years. He has written hundreds of articles (regularly) for 17 national and two international magazines. He has had hundreds of guest editorials published in top national newspapers including the Denver Post, Albany Herald, Las Vegas Tribune and Daily Camera. He wrote a column, "CRYSTAL DESERT CONTINENT," for a major newspaper in Colorado while he lived in Antarctica.

His books include, Handbook for Touring Bicyclists; Strike Three! Take Your Base; Bicycling Around the World; Motorcycle Adventure to Alaska: Into the Wind—A Teen Novel; An Extreme Encounter: Antarctica; Bicycling the Continental Divide: Slice of Heaven, Taste of Hell; Immigration’s Unarmed Invasion: Deadly Consequences; America on the Brink: The Next Added 100 Million Americans; Losing Your Best Friend: Vacancies of the Heart. How to Live a Life of Adventure: The Art of Exploring the World; How to Deal with 21st Century American Women: Co-creating a successful relationship. Reach him: