How to love difficult people

By Kim Giles, Contributor | Posted - Mar 3rd, 2014 @ 10:28am

In this edition of LIFEAdvice, Coach Kim gives some advice on seeing yourself, other people and life more accurately, thereby creating more peace and happiness.


I read your article on intimidation. However, if the other person has the power to harm us and our career due to his or her position of authority, like refusing a promotion or a pay raise, or even worse, firing us, how then can we not be intimidated and how can we not fear them? After all, they can cause us real problems. I also have a spouse who is threatening to leave the church we both belong to and this scares and intimidates me too. How can I not be scared of these situations when they could really mess up my life?


I’m going to answer your question by giving you a different perspective on these relationships. If you can change the way you see yourself and these people they won’t feel as threatening to you.

It is true these people could create some challenges in your life, but the extent to how these challenges causes you to suffer is completely up to you. You have control over how you feel about these people and their behavior. You could see yourself as safe and choose to believe you have nothing to fear.

At least you have the option of seeing your life this way, if you want to.

You basically have two options when it comes to how you will see and experience your life:

Option 1: You can see your life as a scary and dangerous place where all kinds of bad things can happen, thus robbing you of the journey you deserved to have. You can see people as threats and feel intimidated and scared of them. You can spend your energy protecting and defending yourself from all the hurt or problems they could inflict upon you.

Ask Coach Kim
Do you have a question for Coach Kim, or maybe a topic you'd like her to address?
Email her at

Option 2: You can see your life as a safe, classroom experience where you always get the perfect lesson you need next to help you learn and grow. You can see people as teachers and focus on the ways their behavior could help you become more loving. You can spend your energy giving love to others, loving yourself and creating a peaceful life.

I highly recommend Option 2. You can choose to see the perfect in every situation, focus on the lessons, and choose love and forgiveness over judgment and fear. You not only can do this, you are meant to learn to do this as well. You are meant to live in abundance and peace, in spite of the challenges around you.

Here are six principles that can help you adopt a more peaceful mindset:

  1. Choose to see yourself as bulletproof. You have the option of seeing your value as infinite and absolute (which means unchangeable). Your value comes from the fact that you are a one-of-a-kind, irreplaceable human soul who is here to learn and grow and whose value is not on the line. You can see yourself like an irreplaceable diamond that has the same value no matter the setting. No matter how many times you fail or make mistakes, you still have the same value. People can teach you lessons but they have no power to change you or diminish your value in any way. Their words and actions can’t hurt you unless you let them. You can choose to see yourself as safe.
  2. Choose to see life as a custom classroom made just for you. This means if your spouse leaves your religion it is your perfect lesson to experience this for some reason. If you get fired it is your perfect journey to teach you something. Seeing life this way means you stop resisting “what is” and seeing everything as a threat and start seeing everything as here to serve your education in some way. This perspective creates a more peaceful journey where you are more focused on love and learning than protecting and defending.
  3. Choose to see other people as the same as you. We all have the same infinite value and we are all a work in progress or a student in the classroom of life. Everyone deserves the right to be where they are in their journey of becoming. This may mean letting them be imperfect and choosing not to be threatened by their choices. They make choices because there is a lesson there they need to learn. You cannot save them from these lessons. Your job is to love them where they are. You are in this situation because there is a lesson you need to learn here too. It may be a lesson about acceptance and unconditional love. (I am not talking about situations of abuse though).
  4. Related Story

  5. Remember most bad behavior is based in their fear about them. It’s not about you. When people cast you as the bad guy, attack you, reject you or criticize you, it says more about where they are than what it says about you. Their fears of failure and loss create their unkind behavior. These people subconsciously cast you as the bad guy to make their egos feel better. This behavior is really a plea for love and validation. The best response to these kinds of attacks is strength that comes from choosing to see yourself as bulletproof and love. When you can sincerely love someone who is attacking you it forces them to be responsible for their behavior. They can’t blame their behavior on you.
  6. Forgiveness, wisdom and love are the answer to changing this relationship around. This applies to a spouse who disagrees with your spiritual beliefs or is unhappy with your behavior. It applies to a friend who has cast you as the bad guy. It applies to all relationships. Forgiveness, wisdom and love are always the best answer. Your job is to love them as they are, see them with wisdom and compassion and forgive them for disappointing you.

Here are some on suggestions to how to live with forgiveness, wisdom and love.

Wisdom means seeing yourself, the other person and the situation accurately. Even if they get you fired, you are still the same you with the same value and the experience of being fired can only hurt you if you let it. It will also not happen unless it is your perfect journey to have it happen because you are meant to learn something from the experience.

If your spouse leaves your religion, which disappoints you and affects your children and their faith, then it was the perfect lesson in their classroom journey, too. The universe sent them to your family with these parents for a reason and whatever way you mess them up will be the perfect way they were meant to be messed up so they can have their perfect journey figuring themselves out.

No matter what happens your journey — and theirs — is safe and perfect. At least you have the option of seeing your life this way if you want to.

Wisdom means seeing yourself, the other person and the situation accurately. Even if they get you fired, you are still the same you with the same value and the experience of being fired can only hurt you if you let it.

Forgiveness means choosing to let go of judgment, condemnation, criticism and fear toward another person because you don’t want to live in fear yourself. There is a universal law we call “You get what you give." This means if you choose to judge people, you will also feel judged by everyone around you. If you see anyone as not good enough, you will feel not good enough yourself. If you choose to see this person as threatening, you will feel threatened everywhere.

If you choose to see yourself as bulletproof and this person as an innocent student in the classroom of life with infinite and absolute value no matter how they behave and allow them to be as they are, while still having healthy boundaries and speaking up for yourself when necessary from a space of trust and love, you can change the dynamic of the relationship completely.

When you choose to live in trust and love, these people will feel safe with you and stop seeing you as a threat. When they feel safe, they will treat you a lot better. Love has the power to completely change the energy in any relationship.

When you choose to see people with wisdom and forgive them for being lost, scared, confused and behaving badly (because you get this way on occasion too), they will also respect you more. They have to.

There is a great “High Level Forgiveness Formula Worksheet” on my website resources page that can help you to adopt this mindset. If it sounds difficult, that is only because you aren’t used to seeing life this way, but you can do it with practice.

You can do this.

Kimberly Giles is the founder and president of She is also the author of the new book CHOOSING CLARITY: The Path to Fearlessness. She offers free coaching calls every Tuesday night.

Related Stories

Kim Giles

KSL Weather Forecast

Updated: Thursday September 20, 2018 12:56 pm