How to deal with inconsistent people?
The only thing that is consistent about an inconsistent person is their inconsistency.
A few people I know of are very inconsistent in the way they are with me. Sometimes they are warm, and sometimes they comfortably ignore me as if I do not even exist. And it really upsets me when people treat me this way. It is not only confusing but also derogatory. Inconsistent people make me angry and bitter. But why are these people so inconsistent in the way they behave? What does their inconsistent behaviour indicate? And moreover, what do I do with these inconsistent people? Shall I dump them, or shall I fix them? And at what cost?
These were my initial thoughts when inconsistent people used to rule my life. But then I decided to put a full stop. Now I know how to deal with inconsistent people and show them the mirror instead. And one thing I learnt from all of it is that inconsistent behaviour is not normal, and reflects things that are way beyond. So, read on if you want to know how to deal with inconsistent people and their strange conduct that is beyond cognition.
Many of you would relate to what I just mentioned above. The chances are that you yourself know of a few inconsistent people who keep giving you confusing signals, and you keep wondering. What makes it more challenging is that these inconsistent people come from every walk of life: workplace, dating world, gym, family and even social circle. There is no shortage of inconsistent people. And the problem becomes worse when you are entangled in a relationship with an inconsistent person. Such a situation is devastating as you find yourself stuck with a person who is sometimes warm and sometimes cold, and you are not sure where your stand in the person’s life.
Of course, you want to get out of such a situation. You deserve your clarity and peace of mind to move forward in life rather than being stuck with an inconsistent person for life. One way is to avoid them and then move on. But sometimes the nature of the relationship is such that it becomes impossible to do so. You may try to fix the inconsistent people in your life, by speaking to them about their inconsistent behaviour and how it is causing you to suffer. But it seldom helps. It is because inconsistency in relationships is mostly a deliberate action to exert power, dominance and control. So how to go about it?
One thing that will help you navigate past inconsistent people is the conviction that you are doing the right thing. And this conviction will only come when you get to the psyche behind their strange and inconsistent behaviour and seek your own closure. Yes, you need a strong conviction to move past such people. So, if you are someone who is dealing with an inconsistent person, it is time to get to the psyche behind their inconsistent behaviour and pave your way out once and for all.
Pave your way out? Yes, you heard it right! An inconsistent person will always keep you confused, and it will do nothing but disturb your psyche. Inconsistent people are inconsistent with you because they want it to be this way. It is because either you are not important to them, or they do not know where to place you in their lives. And as a result, they keep you unclear about where you fit in their plans. In crude terms, you are no more than just a ‘time-pass’ for them. So, if you are still expecting some fruitful outcome from such inconsistent relationships, rethink again. The chances of you getting something promising are very bleak.
I think consistency in behaviour is the first step toward building loyalty and trust in any relationship. It is the basic building block of all the relationships you forge. And if a person can’t lend security, trust and stability in a relationship then is that relationship worth clinging on to?
Read Also: 5 Most Important Things in a Relationship to ask for?
Are all behavioural inconsistencies intentional?
Not all consistency is intentional. Some inconsistency is natural in relationships. Daily stressors of life can make people exhibit inconsistent behavioural patterns. Many times people are unaware of their behaviour and how they come across to others because they are really hassled, preoccupied and lost in their own issues. So, sometimes a person close to you may ignore you at the gym, for example, not intentionally but unknowingly. It is because they are too entangled in their own issues to realise that they have done anything like that.
So inconsistency in people can also be unintentional, and you need to give people some benefit of the doubt. You can check with them and ask them: “are you doing fine, and is everything okay?” You can also explain to them their inconsistent behaviour and how it is making you feel awkward. If their inconsistent behaviour is just unintentional and if you are important to them, they will surely work upon themselves, and you will be able to see the improvements. But if the inconsistency is intentional, they can’t justify their inconsistent behaviour under the garb of workload or mental pressure forever.
The point is that although inconsistent behaviour in people can be both intentional and unintentional, it is the intentional inconsistency we are concerned about. Most of us reading this post are definitely referring to intentional inconsistencies, and are a victim of inconsistent people and their unexplained inconsistent behaviour.
So who is an inconsistent person?
Any person who is not consistent in their behaviour and conduct can be called an inconsistent person. Inconsistent people often give you mixed and confusing signals with respect to their behaviour, actions, emotions, and promises they make. When you are with an inconsistent person, you never feel secure and confident about what is coming next. You can never be sure about where you stand in their lives, and you never feel stable in such a relationship. One distinguishing trait of an inconsistent person is that you can never predict their behaviour and can never trust them.
For example, an inconsistent person can make you feel on top of this world one day and may not even recognize you the next day. They are warm, and then they are cold. And you keep oscillating between these two states indefinitely. A relationship with an inconsistent person works like this only unless you decide to set it right by confronting them head-on. So the end result? Either they will ghost you as they can’t give you what you want, or you proactively decide to cut them off!
The only thing that is consistent about an inconsistent person is their inconsistency.
Inconsistent behaviour is a grave matter of concern especially when you start you alter your life plans and goals as per the convenience of the inconsistent person in question. Inconsistent people give you confusing signals to keep you on your toes, and you end up doing exactly what they want: manoeuvre your life the way they want!
When you are in a relationship with an inconsistent person, you spend a considerable amount of your time, energy and efforts on something which you can never be sure of. And by the time you realise that such a relationship is not leading you anywhere, a lot has been lost. You even lost those people in life who promised you a better future at one point in time and whom you overlooked for these inconsistent people. All in vain!
Inconsistency is a form of emotional abuse, and you should never accept inconsistent behaviour. You should never let inconsistent people fiddle with your life and then destroy it. So, if you feel that your friend, partner or co-worker has been inconsistent enough times and it has started to bother you, it is time to put a full stop to it: a big one!
What does inconsistent behaviour say about inconsistent people?
Many of you may wonder: why is this person so inconsistent with me? Am I not good enough or is something is lacking in me? It is only natural to feel so! But hold on, their inconsistent behaviour has nothing to do with you. It is about them and their worries.
Inconsistent behaviour speaks a lot about inconsistent people: it is a reflection of their inadequacies, insecurities and personal worries. Their inconsistent behaviour reflects that they are unsure about themselves foremost. Inconsistent behaviour in a person may also indicate a need for exerting power, dominance and control in the relationship. It also strongly indicates that the other person is not sure where to place you in their own life plans, and that is where all the inconsistencies are coming from.
Why do inconsistent people show inconsistent behaviour?
Inconsistent people have an agenda of their own. Sometimes they are not sure where to place you in their lives, so they start to act weird and be inconsistent in an attempt to scare you or give you a signal to move on. Other times, inconsistent people do not want to take the relationship with you to the next level as they are not sure about you. They may take one step forward, and one step back, and the net progression is zero. But one thing is very clear they are not willing to commit to you and take this relationship forward.
Another reason people are inconsistent is that they have lied to you about something important, and now they are scared that if you guys get closer the truth will come out. So, they avoid you when they fear getting caught. For example, your newly found boyfriend may be very inconsistent in his behaviour when he is at home as he may be with his wife, partner or children (of course whom you don’t know of). They may not respond to messages, take calls or be available to talk. Sometimes you may have experienced periods when they just disappear only to tell you that they were busy with something urgent at work. It is also true that when they are with you, they are the most promising thing that can happen to you in the world right?
You can’t rule out another fact that you may be just a stop-gap arrangement for inconsistent people in your life. Or what we can call a relationship of convenience. For example, you met this guy who just had a breakup, and here you are in a rebound relationship. For a few days, he hates his ex, and then he wants to get back to her ex, creating inconsistencies in relationships. It clearly shows that they are confused and you are just being an experimental rat. And by letting people be inconsistent with you, you are making them win and exert their influence over you.
Stop doing that! You should rather look out for patterns of inconsistencies and move on for your own well-being.
How to deal with inconsistent people?
Here are 4 things you can do to deal with inconsistent people:
- Give them the benefit of doubt
My suggestions would be to give inconsistent people some benefit of the doubt and ask them if they are alright. For example, you can tell them: I said hi to you the other day, but you didn’t respond. So is everything okay? It will make the inconsistent person realise that you are cognizant of their inconsistencies, and if their inconsistency is unintentional they will make amends. Not everyone will respond favourably, but at least you can get your clarity.
2. Allow them to make the first move
So, if you have a person who is often inconsistent with you, put the ball in their court. You are not dying for them to speak to you, so make it like that. Allow them to come up to you and make the first move rather than you going up to them. This will give them a clear message that their inconsistencies are being noticed and are not acceptable. If you are important to them, they will come to you. And if they do not, you have your answers.
3. Speak to them head-on
If you have inconsistent people in your life, it is better to address their inconsistencies head-on by directly speaking to them. If someone’s inconsistent behaviour is bugging you and taking away your peace of mind, and despite all efforts, nothing seems to be improving, you should confront them. You should clearly tell them that it is enough and this kind of inconsistent behaviour will not work with you anymore. When you take a stand for yourself, the other person realises the gravity of the situation and tries to make amends of course, if they want to.
If their inconsistency is intentional, they will get a strong message that you are now beyond their control. So either they will make amends or maintain the status quo. In any case, you will get become more clear.
4. Let them go
Okay, so now you have tried all the above options. And if nothing is working out and their hide and seek game is still on, it is time to let them go. You gave them a fair chance, and they did nothing but only disappoint you. So, the ultimate thing to deal with inconsistent people is to let them go and distance yourself. Do not move forward with inconsistent people at any cost, as it will cost you your happiness, relationships, time and efforts.
At this point, I would like to mention that do not make yourself think as their victim or target. Inconsistent people are actually victims of their own inadequacies, insecurities, inabilities and indecisiveness. Inconsistent behaviour in people has nothing to do with you, and it may be more about their own personal issues.
Life is full of beautiful people who can promise you stability, security, predictability and emotional consistency. So, move forward with them and choose your happiness. You deserve it!
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