I detest drama. It’s gross. Drama is uncomfortable and awkward and makes me want to pack my bags and move away. However, no matter where you go to school, or work, or live, conflict is going to come up. There’s always someone in your surroundings who attracts drama like a weird magnet, or personalities that don’t mesh well. Here’s how to handle those uncomfortable moments without spontaneously combusting like you want to.
Think before you speak. Would you say something if the person you were talking about could hear you? Would you say it in front of your grandmother/priest/employer? If not, just don’t say it. Nothing can create drama more quickly than a thoughtless phrase in mockery of someone else.
Remember drama isn’t a reflection of your worth. Having people talk about you isn’t always good. Not being part of the gossip doesn’t mean you’re less popular, it means you have your life more together. On the flip side, if you’re in a misunderstanding or screwed something up, it’s not the end of the world. If you handle the situation okay, people will forget it soon enough. The world keeps spinning. When you apologize or otherwise resolve the situation, #drama blows over incredibly quickly.
Stop viewing drama as entertainment. Others’ lives are not a soap opera. If you want to watch something dramatic, watch reality TV or maybe The Sopranos. It may feel good to hear about the bad stuff happening to people you don’t like, but it will feel Much worse when the wheel turns and the gossips are talking about your misfortune.
Don’t get involved in others’ drama. Similarly, if someone is getting heated about something you’re not involved in, stay out of it. Don’t do more than give advice if requested. Certain situations are best avoided, and middleman in an interpersonal spite-fest is one of them.
Be courteous to everyone. Just be polite. To everyone. Yes, even the dramatic people. Be kind, be respectful, and the world will react in kind to you. You may miss some of the shit-talking people do about others by not engaging, but that’s good! It means that people are less likely to talk shit about you, too.
My life always gets more stressful when I try to tune into my local gossip, and always gets more chill when I stop caring about what Jim and Sally did behind Pam’s back. I have a limited circle of influence, and so I try to only care about things I can affect. Try limiting your own drama the same way – you’ll be surprised how much more relaxed you’ll be. You got this!