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10 Sentences An Upset Person Doesn’t Want To Hear

10 Sentences An Upset Person Doesn’t Want To Hear

In a world divided by so many differences, the truth is that we’re all very much the same. We all want to be happy and to live meaningful lives. We all struggle with similar challenges and insecurities. We all need someone to be there at one time or another.

When a person is feeling upset, angry, sad, disappointed, anxious, or any other negative emotion, this is the opportunity for you to be there for them. To help them feel less alone. It’s a time where you can reflect back on when you’ve felt a similar way and what you wished someone had said to you.

It’s not always easy to say the right thing, but it’s important that we think twice about our words. To someone going through an upsetting time, inappropriate comments can make a lot of difference – but not in a way that benefits them.

Here are 10 sentences an upset person doesn’t want to hear.

1. “You’re overreacting.”

We all have our own temperaments, personalities and life experiences. We all respond differently to different events. What may upset one person, may not upset another. There is no ‘wrong’ or ‘right’ way to feel.

Telling someone that they’re overreacting isn’t empathizing with how they feel. It’s telling them, “You’re not allowed to feel that way.” It’s making them feel that what they’re actually feeling doesn’t matter.

What you want is to acknowledge how they’re feeling – without insulting or criticising them. If they are struggling to think rationally, it’s best to be kind and compassionate in your approach.

Listen to what the person has to say and try putting yourself in the person’s shoes. Try saying, “I can see how you’d feel upset…” and nod along to show you’re actually listening.

2. “Get over it.”

Everyone responds differently to stressful and upsetting events. Everyone grieves at their own pace. Everyone has their own way with dealing with things.

It’s not kind nor helpful to tell someone to “just get on with things” or to “harden up”. It’s not showing them that their sadness matters to you. It’s a very hurtful thing to say to someone already in pain.

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We need to let them express how they’re feeling – it’s vital for maintaining their emotional and mental health. If we continue to push them away, they might withdraw and stop talking about their feelings completely.

My grandfather passed away when I was 11 years old. I didn’t know him all that well, but I saw his life fade away slowly with multiple strokes and Alzheimer’s disease. I recall my mother taking on the role of his full-time carer. She showered him, dressed him and fed him for the last five years of his life.

I recall walking by his room every morning before school and thinking, “This could be the last time I see my grandpa.”

I am now 26 years old, yet when I think of him, I still feel incredibly sad. I’ve been told in the past to “get over it”. But grief and pain doesn’t have a time limit. You’re allowed to be sad.

Instead of saying, “get over it”, try saying, “I know things are really hard for you at the moment. Let me know when you want to talk about it.”

3. “You’re such a cry baby.”

Crying is a very effective way of letting your feelings out. A way of releasing all the emotions you’ve been keeping locked inside. People who cry are often labelled as ‘weak’. But they’re not. In fact, they’re strong for having the courage to be honest about how they’re feeling.

I’m a very sensitive person and up until I was in my early 20’s, I thought it was something to be ashamed about. I hated that part of myself. I was repeatedly told that I was a “cry baby” and that crying in front of people was embarrassing.

But I know now that it’s not. Crying is normal. And I’ve realised that my sensitivity means I am more empathetic. I’m more aware of how other people might be feeling. I can relate better with others and have more honest and fulfilling relationships.

Instead of rushing to put a stop on someone’s tears, let them cry it out. Put a hand on their shoulder and let them take their time. Get them a tissue. Remind yourself that what you’re doing – just being there – is enough.

4. “Your life isn’t that bad.”

Just because a person generally has a ‘happy’ life, doesn’t mean they don’t have a right to feel unhappy. Telling someone, “Your life isn’t that bad” can make someone feel that they’re ‘complaining about nothing’ and their problems are trivial.

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When you tell someone all the things they should be grateful for, it can shine a light on the positive but it doesn’t necessarily solve the problem at hand.

Try a kinder and gentler approach. For example, if someone has lost their job but they’re quite wealthy, you could say, “I know it sucks that you’ve lost your job, you’re probably worried you won’t find one soon. Do you want to look at job vacancies together?”

5. “You don’t look good.”

When someone is going through a difficult time, the last thing on their mind is how they look. They may be struggling to get a good night’s sleep, not eating as well as they should be, and already feeling low and insecure about themselves.

Three years ago, I was going through possibly one of the hardest times in my life. I wasn’t sleeping well and it was quite evident on my face. And a friend of mine saw me and immediately said, “You look really tired.”

There was no “Hello”. No, “Are you okay? You look really tired.” Although I’m sure the person didn’t mean to be hurtful, the comment left me feeling worse than I already was feeling.

If you’re concerned that your loved one is behaving or acting differently, simply say, “I’m worried about you. Try to eat well and get enough sleep. If you need anything at all, just let me know.”

6. “Just tell me what’s wrong!”

For some people, it’s not easy to open up and express their emotions and feelings. It’s not easy to put into words how they feel. Don’t rush them into opening up. Instead, make it clear that you’re there for them, but you will give them the time and privacy that they need.

Try saying, “When you’re ready to talk about it, I’ll be here for you.”

7. “You’re always angry.”

Sometimes it’s so easy to label someone ‘angry’, than it is to look beneath the surface. Why do you think they are ‘always angry’? Is there something going on in their life that they’re too afraid to talk about?

Is their ‘angry’ attitude a result of negative experiences in the past? Is it possible that depression, or some other illness, might be the cause?

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Rather than criticizing your loved one, seek to understand their behaviors. Think about what may have happened to them recently or what may be happening to them now. Show them kindness and compassion.

Try saying instead, “I’ve noticed that you’ve been really upset lately. Do you want to talk about it?”

8. “You’ll be fine.”

Reassuring a loved one that they will be okay is great – unless it’s done in a patronizing and condescending way. Don’t dismiss how they’re feeling and brush off what they’re trying to say.

People don’t always want solutions. They want someone to listen, to remind them that their pain is valid.

Instead, try, “I know everything is hard at the moment, but try to hang in there. Let me know if you need anything.”

9. “You’re bringing me down.”

Nobody likes to feel that they’re a burden, that they’re bothering someone with their problems. But when you say, “you’re bringing me down”, it can have a much deeper impact than you realize.

The person going through a difficult time might feel even more lonely, more helpless. They might wonder whether things will ever get better. They might even want to give up.

Try not to say this at all. Instead, just remind yourself that life is filled with ups and downs. And your loved one just needs a hand in being lifted back up.

10. “I’m too busy to talk.”

When I was 18 years old, I saved someone from ending their life simply through talking. I’d only known the person for two weeks, yet I sat with him in his car for two hours. He was a friend of my now-husband’s and the second I looked at him, I knew he needed to talk.

He told me why he was living off of chocolate bars for dinners. He told me why he had a broken relationship with his mother. He cried and I listened.

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The defining moment came when he looked me in the eyes and said, “I was going to end my life tonight. I had it planned and everything. But you stopped me. I didn’t do it, all because of you.”

I will never ever forget those words. Because I had reached out to someone, because I had taken time out of my day to help someone, I had saved their life.

Sometimes we forget how much of a difference we can make to someone else’s life. How much our kindness, our compassion, our smile, our hug – can completely change someone else’s life.

We’re all busy. We all have responsibilities.

But we all have similar problems too.

And sometimes we just need to be reminded that we are important. That our feelings matter.

Rather than saying to someone, “I’m too busy to talk,” think to yourself, “HOW can I make time for this person?”

Sometimes just 15 minutes is enough to remind them that they’re really not alone.

Sometimes just 15 minutes can save a life.

Featured photo credit: goodinteractive via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on March 14, 2019

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

7 Questions to Ask in a Job Interview That Will Impress the Interviewer

Recruiters might hold thousands of interviews in their careers and a lot of them are reporting the same thing—that most candidates play it safe with the questions they ask, or have no questions to ask in a job interview at all.

For job applicants, this approach is crazy! This is a job that you’re going to dedicate a lot of hours to and that might have a huge impact on your future career. Don’t throw away the chance to figure out if the position is perfect for you.

Here are 7 killer questions to ask in a job interview that will both impress your counterpart and give you some really useful insights into whether this job will be a dream … or a nightmare.

1. What are some challenges I might come up against this role?

A lesser candidate might ask, “what does a typical day look like in this role?” While this is a perfectly reasonable question to ask in an interview, focusing on potential challenges takes you much further because it indicates that you already are visualizing yourself in the role.

It’s impressive because it shows that you are not afraid of challenges, and you are prepared to strategize a game plan upfront to make sure you succeed if you get the job.

It can also open up a conversation about how you’ve solved problems in the past which can be a reassuring exercise for both you and the hiring manager.

How it helps you:

If you ask the interviewer to describe a typical day, you may get a vibrant picture of all the lovely things you’ll get to do in this job and all the lovely people you’ll get to do them with.

Asking about potential roadblocks means you hear the other side of the story—dysfunctional teams, internal politics, difficult clients, bootstrap budgets and so on. This can help you decide if you’re up for the challenge or whether, for the sake of your sanity, you should respectfully decline the job offer.

2. What are the qualities of really successful people in this role?

Employers don’t want to hire someone who goes through the motions; they want to hire someone who will excel.

Asking this question shows that you care about success, too. How could they not hire you with a dragon-slayer attitude like that?

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How it helps you:

Interviewers hire people who are great people to work with, but the definition of “great people” differs from person to person.

Does this company hire and promote people with a specific attitude, approach, worth ethic or communication style? Are the most successful people in this role strong extroverts who love to talk and socialize when you are studious and reserved? Does the company reward those who work insane hours when you’re happiest in a more relaxed environment?

If so, then this may not be the right match for you.

Whatever the answer is, you can decide whether you have what it takes for the manager to be happy with your performance in this role. And if the interviewer has no idea what success looks like for this position, this is a sign to proceed with extreme caution.

3. From the research I did on your company, I noticed the culture really supports XYZ. Can you tell me more about that element of the culture and how it impacts this job role?

Of course, you could just ask “what is the culture like here? ” but then you would miss a great opportunity to show that you’ve done your research!

Interviewers give BIG bonus point to those who read up and pay attention, and you’ve just pointed out that (a) you’re diligent in your research (b) you care about the company culture and (c) you’re committed to finding a great cultural fit.

How it helps you:

This question is so useful because it lets you pick an element of the culture that you really care about and that will have the most impact on whether you are happy with the organization.

For example, if training and development is important to you, then you need to know what’s on offer so you don’t end up in a dead-end job with no learning opportunities.

Companies often talk a good talk, and their press releases may be full of shiny CSR initiatives and all the headline-grabbing diversity programs they’re putting in place. This is your opportunity to look under the hood and see if the company lives its values on the ground.

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A company that says it is committed to doing the right thing by customers should not judge success by the number of up-sells an employee makes, for instance. Look for consistency, so you aren’t in for a culture shock after you start.

4. What is the promotion path for this role, and how would my performance on that path be measured?

To be clear, you are not asking when you will get promoted. Don’t go there—it’s presumptuous, and it indicates that you think you are better than the role you have applied for.

A career-minded candidate, on the other hand, usually has a plan that she’s working towards. This question shows you have a great drive toward growth and advancement and an intention to stick with the company beyond your current state.

How it helps you:

One word: hierarchy.

All organizations have levels of work and authority—executives, upper managers, line managers, the workforce, and so on. Understanding the hierarchical structure gives you power, because you can decide if you can work within it and are capable of climbing through its ranks, or whether it will be endlessly frustrating to you.

In a traditional pyramid hierarchy, for example, the people at the bottom tend to have very little autonomy to make decisions. This gets better as you rise up through the pyramid, but even middle managers have little power to create policy; they are more concerned with enforcing the rules the top leaders make.

If having a high degree of autonomy and accountability is important to you, you may do better in a flat hierarchy where work teams can design their own way of achieving the corporate goals.

5. What’s the most important thing the successful candidate could accomplish in their first 3 months/6 months/year?

Of all the questions to ask in a job interview, this one is impressive because it shows that you identify with and want to be a successful performer, and not just an average one.

Here, you’re drilling down into what the company needs, and needs quite urgently, proving that you’re all about adding value to the organization and not just about what’s in it for you.

How it helps you:

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Most job descriptions come with 8, 10 or 12 different job responsibilities and a lot of them with be boilerplate or responsibilities that someone in HR thinks are associated with this role. This question gives you a better sense of which responsibilities are the most important—and they may not be what initially attracted you to the role.

If you like the idea of training juniors, for example, but success is judged purely on your sales figures, then is this really the job you thought you were applying for?

This question will also give you an idea of what kind of learning curve you’re expected to have and whether you’ll get any ramp-up time before getting down to business. If you’re the type of person who likes to jump right in and get things done, for instance, you may not be thrilled to hear that you’re going to spend the first three months shadowing a peer.

6. What do you like about working here?

This simple question is all about building rapport with the interviewer. People like to talk about themselves, and the interviewer will be flattered that you’re interested in her opinions.

Hopefully, you’ll find some great connection points that the two of you share. What similar things drive you head into the office each day? How will you fit into the culture?

How it helps you:

You can learn a lot from this question. Someone who genuinely enjoys his job will be able to list several things they like, and their answers will sound passionate and sincere. If not….well, you might consider that a red flag.

Since you potentially can learn a lot about the company culture from this question, it’s a good idea to figure out upfront what’s important to you. Maybe you’re looking for a hands-off boss who values independent thought and creativity? Maybe you work better in environments that move at a rapid, exciting pace?

Whatever’s important to you, listen carefully and see if you can find any common ground.

7. Based on this interview, do you have any questions or concerns about my qualifications for the role?

What a great closing question to ask in a job interview! It shows that you’re not afraid of feedback—in fact, you are inviting it. Not being able to take criticism is a red flag for employers, who need to know that you’ll act on any “coaching moments” with a good heart.

As a bonus, asking this question shows that you are really interested in the position and wish to clear up anything that may be holding the company back from hiring you.

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How it helps you:

What a devious beast this question is! On the surface, it looks straightforward, but it’s actually giving you four key pieces of information.

First, is the manager capable of giving you feedback when put on the spot like this? Some managers are scared of giving feedback, or don’t think it’s important enough to bother outside of a formal performance appraisal. Do you want to work for a boss like that? How will you improve if no one is telling you what you did wrong?

Second, can the manager give feedback in a constructive way without being too pillowy or too confrontational? It’s unfair to expect the interviewer to have figured out your preferred way of receiving feedback in the space of an interview, but if she come back with a machine-gun fire of shortcomings or one of those corporate feedback “sandwiches” (the doozy slipped between two slices of compliment), then you need to ask yourself, can you work with someone who gives feedback like that?

Third, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about before you leave the interview. This gives you the chance to make a final, tailored sales pitch so you can convince the interviewer that she should not be worried about those things.

Fourth, you get to learn the things the hiring manager is concerned about period. If turnover is keeping him up at night, then your frequent job hopping might get a lot of additional scrutiny. If he’s facing some issues with conflict or communication, then he might raise concerns regarding your performance in this area.

Listen carefully: the concerns that are being raised about you might actually be a proxy for problems in the wider organization.

Making Your Interview Work for You

Interviews are a two-way street. While it is important to differentiate yourself from every other candidate, understand that convincing the interviewer you’re the right person for the role goes hand-in-hand with figuring out if the job is the right fit for you.

Would you feel happy in a work environment where the people, priorities, culture and management style were completely at odds with the way you work? Didn’t think so!

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Featured photo credit: Amy Hirschi via unsplash.com

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