Founder of Virtus Career Consulting, speaker and author of the career empowerment book
Making someone feel unimportant. There’s no one-size-fits-all reason why people belittle others. Some people are unaware of their behavior and may say a person is too sensitive, or dismiss it as humor if brought up. People may belittle because they have unresolved anger toward a person. Other times the behavior is rooted in insecurity; putting others down to lift themselves up. Regardless, it’s important to realize belittling behavior destroys relationships. Thoughts that lead to belittling: • I’m going to make you look like a fool • I’m going to show your idea doesn’t matter To overcome belittling: REFLECT. • Have I been accused of putting someone down? Do I tend to rationalize it? • Do I have unresolved resentment toward this person? • Am I struggling with insecurities this person triggers? REFRAME. • “He/She is being so sensitive.” • Try: “Maybe I’m not coming across as I intend.” CHOOSE. Explore a more respectful and tactful way to communicate. Evaluate if something should even be said. T.H.I.N.K.: Is it True, Helpful, Inspiring, Necessary, Kind? Commit to REFLECT, REFRAME, and CHOOSE a new behavior.