You Can’t Change Other People!

There are myriad reasons why one might desire to alter another person’s behaviour. It could stem from the impact of bullying someone may be affected by,, it could be a heartfelt concern for a friend or family member grappling with difficulties or making unwise choices. Leading to the genuine intention to alleviate their suffering and enhance their well-being. The desire to rectify their problems and alleviate their anguish is often the driving force behind such aspirations.

However, in my professional experience of interacting with individuals, it’s frequently the case that people wish for others to change their behaviours due to the impact it has on themselves. Instances of cruelty towards others, often originating in childhood dynamics such as something like the impact of bullying, underscore this reality.

Yet, not everyone harbours a desire to change—or at least not in the manner one might expect—and that prerogative is theirs to uphold. Despite the noble intentions or urgency, one cannot compel people to change, nor can they rectify their issues or undesirable behaviours. Attempting to do so typically exacerbates matters—not for the individual in question but for oneself.

People undergo transformation only when propelled by a compelling impetus—one that eclipses any opposing factors. This process demands autonomy and resilience, motivation and willpower, the cultivation of new habits and influences, as well as patience, persistence, and, above all, time—an experience familiar to each of us amid personal growth.

The impact of bullying leads to the dynamics of the bully and the bullied invariably not necessarily denoting perpetrator and victim. Instead, they often manifest as someone seeking to assert control or deflect a situation, feeling, or behaviour, with the recipient being someone present circumstantially or conveniently available for manipulation.

Consider this: in attempting to change another person’s behaviour, are you not, in essence, seeking to control a situation to alter your own emotional state? In doing so, one risks becoming akin to what they seek to change.

Countless hours and copious energy are squandered in this pursuit, whereas the primary focus should lie in how one responds to others and their actions. Recognising the need for personal change to embody resilience, autonomy, and influence in any given situation is paramount.

The transformation within oneself often catalyses a corresponding change in others. Embracing what lies beyond one’s control is empowering, as it enables the conscious choice of emotional responses and the navigation of life with minimal impact.

Ultimately, the goal is to emerge unscathed, undeterred, and unharmed from the outset—a prospect that certainly holds appeal. If such an outcome resonates with you, perhaps it’s time to realign your focus.

If you feel like the impact of bullying is changing your behaviour or leading you to want to change someone else’s behaviour and it’s leading to a frustrating situation, you may want to take advantage of my free 15 minute consultation.  For anyone looking to begin their therapy journey, it could be the start of something that is exactly what you’re looking for. If you would like to get in touch and find out more about my services, contact me for details.

About The Author

An experienced therapist, Jille Tringham is the owner of Meditate Place and has years of personal and industry expertise. Her unique therapeutic approach can offer long term release and the ability to cope with emotional issues that cause daily setbacks and uncertainty in your life.  Jille Tringham has a number of years experience in human behaviour both in a commercial setting and as a therapist. She provides therapies from her Birmingham base to release you from your day to day challenges, as well as Life Coaching and Career Mentoring because she understands the physical and emotional strains that spill into all areas of life.