A highlight from 538: Help a Know-It-All Behave Better, with Mark Goulston


Either irrational or at least we perceive to be irrational and specifically we also all deal with people who are knows alls how can we do a better job at helping them to behave and more. Broadly how can we do a better job at being able to handle the irrational situations and people that we run into today. I'm so glad to welcome back to the show. Someone who's absolutely an expert at this. It's going to help us to really navigate some of the more difficult situations so we can do a better job at serving people and serving organizations. I'm so glad to welcome back to the show mark golson. He is a founding member of the newsweek expert. Form and marshall goldsmith. Mg one hundred coach. He works with founders entrepreneurs and ceos in dealing with and overcoming psychological and interpersonal obstacles to realizing their full potential. He is the co author. Along with dr dianna handle of why cope when you can heal. How healthcare heroes of kofi nineteen can recover from ptsd and also trauma to triumph a roadmap for leading through disruption and thriving on the other side as well as being the author or co author of seven additional books. He is the host of the my wakeup call podcast and is the co-creator and moderator of the multi-annual documentary stay alive an intimate conversation about suicide prevention. He was a ucla professor of psychiatry for more than twenty years and also a former fbi hostage negotiation trainer. One of his many books is titled talking a crazy how to deal with the irrational and impossible people in your life mark. It's been nine years. I think since you're on the show last. I'm so glad we've kept in touch. Thank you so much for your time. Well it's great to be back and right out of the gate. I wanna give people a little bit of marketing one. Oh one there's a term called mental real estate and it was taught to me from someone in orange county who is one of the original madge. Nears tony baxter And what he shared with me was the term mental real estate. And i said tony what is that. He said it's when you come up with something that's familiar. And then you twist it you own more mental real estate. He said for instance. Pirates of the caribbean owns the word. Pirates in the minds of kids because when kids think of pirates they think of pirates of the caribbean disney owns pirates. And i was thinking of that because my book talking to crazy has a certain amount of mental real estate. When i told people i was going to write about that and it wasn't about mental illness it was about dealing with people that drive us crazy. They all they all said. I need that book today for today. So that had met louis gate but i thought that was pretty good mental real estate. Yeah yeah it is and actually this leads right into the first thing i wanted to ask you. Is this word crazy. And that's not a word that sometimes is thought of as the most politically correct word. You're a psychiatrist though. So i know you've given a lot of thought to use this word in the title when you say crazy. What do you mean you know. I got a lot of blowback and i still have mixed feelings because i love my profession. I love the people who work in mental health. It's a it's a tough go and the world needs it more than ever and people would come to me in my profession and they'd say how can you use the word talking too crazy. We already have a stigma. How dare you do that. I said did you read the book. They said no. I said it's really a book about how to deal with people who drive you crazy. The people the impossible the irrational people in your life. It's not about mental illness. It's about how people drive you crazy and the title actually will get people to hopefully read the book because the book is really about empathizing with them so that you can disarm the way. They're being difficult with you. Indeed and as i think about the book and the advice you give and also the point you make that we all can be irrational right. It's easy to look at the other person and say okay. This person's been really irrational in this situation or is irrational often and yet of course we all step into that and i. I love the example. You given the book about someone giving you advice along time ago about what to do with a dog sinks its teeth into your hand which have share that if a dog sinks its teeth into your hand and you try to pull your hand out it will sink. Its teeth deeper. But if instead you push your hand into the dog's mouth it will start to choke in gag and it will let go which leads me to a little anecdote that at the beginning of the book that people found fascinating. Can i share that one. That was when. I had a little incident with road rage. Sure please so. I was having an. It's a little bit like pushing your hand into the dog's mouth. So i was having one of those days where everything. I did backfired. I mean i couldn't do anything right. And i'm driving in southern california. That's first mistake. That was a mistake. That's right so i'm driving from actually the westside of los angeles into the san fernando valley. You probably know that stretch of road. Yeah and And it's too crowded on the highway. There called the four. Oh five so. I'm taking a powell. Road called sepulveda's boulevard. So i'm i had a terrible day in his i'm driving. I cut off someone in a pickup truck with his wife any haunted horn and i just sort of wave and i cut him off again. Oh no i'm just so out of it and he pulls up he pulls up in front of me and he stops and i'm so out of it. I just stopped behind him. And this big six foot six. Probably you know just a strong surfer dude guy. He comes out and before he comes out. I can see his wife is telling them not to get out of the car. And i'm just staring at them because i'm having a terrible day. And so finally he gets out of the car he comes over and he bangs on my window and i must not have been rational but i must have pretty good instincts and i lower the window. I mean who would lower window to someone is banging on your window and he says to me you cut me off twice. Nobody cuts me off and you cut me off twice. I'm gonna show you never to cut me off again. And then i looked at him. And i said do you ever have one of those days where everything you do backfires. I mean everything in you hoping to run into the person who will put you out of your misery. Are you the guy. He said what i said. Yeah i don't cut people off in traffic. I don't cut people off in traffic twice i. I'm just having the worst day and nothing's going right in. Are you the guy who's going to put me out of my misery.

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