Is there someone in your life that constantly needs your attention? I’m not talking about your young children but other people who always seem to need you for something? Maybe they are always asking for approval, maybe they need you for financial support. It’s nice to feel needed but when it becomes so much that it takes away from your happiness, it’s a problem. Here are a few ways to deal with needy people.
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How To Deal With Needy People
1 – Be Honest
Sometimes you just have to put your foot down and be honest. Tell them, “hey, you are stealing my joy and stressing me out.” Just nip it in the bud so to speak and be done with it. There was a guy I went to college with. We weren’t close friends but he was part of a group of friends that I had. He was a quiet guy but when I went off to the Army he started writing me and writing me. I tried to write back as much as I could but I was serving in Korea, I had so much to do I could barely keep in touch with my own family.
One day I received a letter from him telling me that I was a horrible friend and I wasn’t writing him enough. He kept trying to make me feel guilty for not putting in the effort. I felt guilty so I tried harder. Then I received letters about how my letters weren’t long enough. I started dreading checking the mail and it just stole my energy. He needed more attention than I could give. I finally just said, “ya know, I’m not even really this close to the guy.” I sent him a letter apologizing but told him I am no longer interested in this friendship. Sometimes you just gotta pull the plug and be honest.
2 – Be Less Available
If you can’t cut them off completely, then at least make yourself harder to reach. Don’t answer the phone. Take longer to answer text messages. Make it more difficult for them to reach you.
3 – Set Boundaries
Deal with needy people by setting boundaries. Sometimes the person being needy doesn’t understand that they have crossed a line. Make it clear to them. Don’t engage in certain types of conversations at work. Let them know you have strict family time, etc. The person needs to know what you are willing to do and not do.
4 – Deal With Your Guilt
Many times we continue to let needy people steal our joy because we feel guilty. Needy people are experts at making us feel guilty. That is their power. Without it, they can’t get you to do what they need you to do. Guilt just gives you puppet strings. You have to learn to deal with your guilt if you want to deal with needy people. Cut those strings. You have one life to be as happy as you can. Don’t let someone else steal your joy.
How do you deal with needy people?