How to Deal with a Self-Righteous Know-It-All
His opinions are correct, just because he is the source.
Others’ opinions are suspect – especially when those perspectives are well informed, because the self-righteous one is not the source.
Self-righteous people are most interested in themselves and only interested in others to the degree that others support their image of rightness.
When a self-righteous person is truly out ranked, out smarted, or out classed, he usually shuts down and doesn’t know what to do. It’s as if there were no inner program with an option that allows for someone else to be better, smarter or have greater credibility.
The crazy-making truth about self-righteousness
Self-righteous people are the ones most likely to view others as self-righteous.
So, the first thing to do when you perceive someone else as self-righteous is to look in the mirror.
You can be certain that you are NOT self-righteously accusing someone else of self-righteousness if:
Regardless of their attitude, you recognize and appreciate when they have a good point.
You see them as a person with an issue, rather than a walking, talking annoyance to humankind (a convenient object of blame).
You can successfully ignore their self-righteousness and focus on the task at hand.
If you cannot let go of your own self-righteousness toward the self-righteous, then you are an equal contributor to the problem.
When you are not part of the problem, here is the best solution:
Here’s why: it’s not going to change. At least, you cannot expect it to. A solid case of self-righteousness requires real help and outside insight. In other words, the self-righteous soul needs to ask for help and then be willing to receive the most difficult kind of feedback over time.
You can’t just show up to up in front of the average self-righteous person and say, “Hey, knock it off.”
So, forget it. Focus on getting things done and do not allow a self-righteous attitude to get in the way.
Accept the self-righteous one’s good ideas, rejected the bad ones, move ahead and do not be intimidated or annoyed. You’ll never regret this.
On the other hand, if you allow a self-righteous person to get under your skin, you’ll be the only one suffering. And the suffering is enough to turn the mildest soul into a raging lunatic.
Sleepless nights, incessant inner negativity, spinning thoughts about how anyone can think they are such a god, etc…
In other words, say good-bye to any shred of inner peace!
If you allow a self-righteous person to destroy your peace, then…
You are fully engaged in self-sabotage.
At the iNLP Center, we call this dynamic a control attachment, or an attachment to being controlled.
In other words, you consistently put yourself in a position where another human being is determining how you think and feel. A lot of us have a tendency to feel that other people or outward circumstances are calling the shots.
It’s hard to choose healthy thoughts and feelings when the strings of your psyche are being pulled by someone else (especially a self-righteous person).
So, learn how self-sabotage works and get a handle on that attachment to being controlled. This free video explains how.
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Bundrant, M. (2015). How to Deal with a Self-Righteous Know-It-All. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 28, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/nlp/2013/08/how-to-deal-with-a-self-righteous-know-it-all/