How to Deal With Assholes (and Cool People Too)

BB66EC34-4602-407E-AF6F-019619DE95E0-w800-h600 In my early 20s almost all my friends lifted weights, did steroids, and smoked and sold weed.

Many of them got their weed from me. I had a network of about 25 dealers who I sold to—quarter pounds, pounds, 5 pounds, and some in the 10-50 pounds range. It was a good little business for a 20-year-old with no skills or values.

One time my friend Scott came over to pick up a batch. He walks into my place, breathing fast and heavy and tells me that some crazy guy in another car was chasing him, yelling at him and trying to run him off the road.

He said he thinks he lost him, but there’s a chance the guy might’ve followed him into my complex.

I take Scott upstairs to chill on my couch. He can’t sit still—he clenches his fists and keeps rocking back and forth, repeating to himself “Fuck that guy”

Just then my buddy Bill—who was also coming over to get some weed from me—arrives. I open the door and Bill storms in all pumped like he’s getting ready for a UFC fight or something.

He tells me how some dude cut him off on the road, that he might have even come into my complex, and that if he finds the guy he’s gonna beat the shit out of him.

F616D912-CD62-4D0F-8253-AEFDEDE705D5-w800-h600Then I hear Scott yell down from upstairs “What did you say mother fucker?’

You guessed it. My two roided-out drug dealing buddies—who had never met before—road raged on each other on the way to my place.

I calmed em’ down, made em’ shake hands, told em’ that it ain’t cool to bring this kind of vibe around, and that they especially shouldn’t be acting like this when they’re picking up drugs.

We took bong rips and got a good laugh out the whole thing.

There’s two big lessons here…

For one, you never know when you’re gonna cross paths with someone again, and in what capacity.

2EEDE99D-63F2-43CE-9280-E136E469EC8C-w800-h600That guy you’re an a-hole to in the parking lot at the grocery store, just may be the guy in charge of your next tax audit or cooking your next hamburger.

Or the lady you’re super cool to, and let cut in line in front of you in line at the bank may be a customer service rep you’ll soon be dealing with somewhere who can make your life a whole lot easier.

Maybe they’ll be an important future business connection.

Or maybe, just maybe, they’re YOU walking around in another flesh-suit. We’ll get to that in just a minute.

“Be nice to people on your way up because you’ll meet them on your way down”

Wilson Mizner

Powder_steel_on_magnet-w800-h600Now secondly, like attracts like.

In my late teens when I used to drive around like an asshole looking for other assholes to argue and fight with, we always seemed to find each other. Later as I become cooler to people, I attracted mostly people into my life who were cool as well.

It’s funny how the asshole finds all the assholes, and the cool, helpful, giving people find other cool, helpful, giving people.

Successful people attract other successful people.

Losers attract losers.

Haters attract haters.

Takers attract takers.

And givers attract givers.

Other people.

A lot of em’ are great.

And some of them will try to suck the very life right out of ya.

But most are somewhere in the middle.

50DFF2A4-317E-456A-8EF0-57FB3590B10E-w800-h600-w800-h600The key is to remember that we’re all in this thing together.

I told this story in my 37 Ways to Be a Total Badass Post, but it’s worth telling again.

One time I was getting some breakfast at the local bagel shop and the line got kinda messy—it was hard to tell who was next.

I was in a hurry, felt that everything revolved around self-important me, and thought I was next, then this older gentleman started walking up to the counter, kinda cutting in front of me.

I called him out on it and was basically a total dick to the guy. He turned around and said in a calm, cool, and collective manner “Hey we’re all in this thing together man.”

He was right.

He pointed straight to the bigger truth of the situation.

I’m not saying let people walk all over you but we are all in this thing together, and the cooler you are to everyone else, the cooler they’re gonna be to you.

reflection-1a-w800-h600 How you treat others is how you treat yourself.

Those things that usually piss you off about someone else are just parts of yourself that you’re not willing to look at or deal with it. It’s easier to look over there, and say “Hey, that guy’s an asshole.”

And he very well may be an asshole. But if he’s getting to you, then it’s time to take a serious look at yourself and realize that maybe whatever it is he’s doing that’s getting to you is something you do as well—at least on some level—but aren’t conscious of…or are conscious of and haven’t accepted, addressed or dealt with it properly yet.

Maybe he’s just a mirror trying to get you to pay attention to your own thoughts, actions and behaviors.

Maybe he’s an asshole cuz’ you’re one too, and that’s what you’re attracting—assholes.

The more we can look at other people this way, as reflections of ourselves, the more of an authentic life we can live.

The cooler we are to other people, the cooler they are to us.

Want people to be nice to you?

Be nice to them.

Want life to help you out?

Help other people out.

Want people to be more honest with you?

Be more honest with THEM.

Wanna be heard?

Listen

Want awesome people in your life?

BE an awesome person yourself.

Wanna get what you want in life?

Help others get what THEY want.

84D52F83-6B89-4481-8A04-528AA84C3E1A-w800-h600For what you do to others, is what you do to yourself.

Sure, some people are better off avoiding all together. (I’ve BEEN that person to avoid many times myself BTW.)

But sometimes the biggest jerks, energy drainers and complainers are people in our lives that we can’t totally avoid—like family members. In this case, it’s best to just be as cool to them as possible to them, live your own life in such a way as to where they’re not able to drag you down, and be an example…it might just be contagious…or maybe it won’t be, but it’s worth being an example anyway.

People are what makes life worth living…but they can also make it a living hell.

Surround yourself with people who lift you up, and lift them up as well.

Treat others like you want them to treat you—treat them like they’re “you” in a different flesh suit.

Help others get what they want and you’ll get what you want.

We all know this stuff—Grandma told it to us a thousand times before we were even 5—but it’s so easy to forget, and sometimes so hard to live.

I wrote this post mostly to remind myself of how I want to behave and think, but if it reminds you too—even just a little—all the better.

We can never be reminded enough.

Talk soon,

Big Chris

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49F3C254-DA02-4D0F-B118-C5821AF667D0-w800-h600

Written by Chris McCombs

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Comments

  1. Chris!! I’m so happy I came across your website/ blog last month. You have awesome messages. I’m from SoCal And I feel like I’m talking to a friend when I read your posts. They inspire me to be better. I wish we could hang out someday, ha! Thanks again. Leah from San Diego. :-)

  2. Another great Post, Chris…with great advice. Thanks!

  3. Great blog post Chris. Loved it. Thank you.

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      thanks Rob, you’re a true inspiration brother. You AMAZE me with all the stuff you’re able to do

      true story

  4. Hi Chris
    Great post on a subject dear to my heart. I have just sent you an email re this post and I would very much appreciate you having a look at it. I think you would relate given your family situation. I hope you will read it as it’s from my heart but I also realise you try not to do e mail. I would greatly value your comments as I totally respect what you have to say. Thank you, Emma (Uk)

  5. Thanks Chris. You know after a day of hearing my ex wife try to tell me how worthless I am and how I should get a normal job ( I am a paramedic and work all hours). I felt like blowing up and letting go of all this anger but after reading your post I just went in and told my sleeping son I love him. It is more important for me and him that I remain calm and collective. I wish I could have a drink with you and tell you thanks in person but this will have to do. Thanks brother.

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      right on man, your comment means a lot brother, serious, that’s the real deal right there Ron

      Stay calm bro, and don’t let a word she says sink in, just let it move right through you, remain unattached

  6. Thanks Chris, I related to this one since I’m in recovery and that happened simultaneously with changing the people I spend time with. And now that I’m doing better it’s easier to be the giver in any situation. Lovin it.

  7. I’ve learned; Give what you want and give it as if you already have it :)

    Peace , Matthew

  8. Scotty De Graff says:

    I was doing so well with my workouts and weight until my son and best friend left for a 2 year mission. I started to get back into old habits and put on some of the weight I lost. I still hit the gym but I think I miss my son. I went back to the posts you have written and put together a game plan. I will keep you posted on how it is going. I want to look better than I did when he left 9 months ago. I still got time before he gets back! :)

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      right on Scotty

      it sounds like you have an AWESOME relationship with your son, a rare thing these days bro

  9. Another awesome article. Whenever you pop up in my news feed I have to stop everything and read. ..

  10. Rich Clench says:

    Out -fu#$&ng -standing post Chris.. as usual. Lucky for me my daughters live life this way. Thank you

  11. Yo bro! I love everything you said. It is so true! You know that people come and go in this business. It is just a way of life. Goals are reached, challenges are overcome, obstacles block the weak, finances hit hard, family situations change.

    I’ve surrounded myself with positive people. I’ve helped lots of people. Some of the people never gave me a dime. But they referred somebody to me, and 6 months later, I’ve picked up over half a dozen new clients because of the referral tree. All because I helped her lose 5 pounds.

    And it isn’t the first time. I helped another lose 30 pounds. She’s referred another 6 clients to me. Talk about Connectors! You know we fail to live when we fail to help others.

    I’ve been staying up to date with your blog. It’s been super busy wrapping up 2013. But this is truly a year setup for success. I’m pumped and couldn’t agree with your thoughts more.

    Train Hard bro. By the way, I am training for American Ninja Warrior. I hope to audition to cast and going to do my very best. You know I’m training hard.

  12. Cool post, very true stuff. I used to act like an asshole and ended up getting myself in trouble. Now I act as chill as possible even when I want to flip the fuck out.

    It’s crazy how much your life changes when you change yourself, and also how people react to you. My life is almost TOO calm now, lol.

    More weed dealing stories! I used to sell weed too

  13. Thanks

  14. it very good to read and seriously it is really very inspire

  15. John Lober says:

    Hey Chris, are you interested in UFC?

  16. Found this off google….great article man. really insightful. I’m going to try to implement a lot of what you said here.

    …Thank you.

  17. Steve the Black Nomad says:

    this is a deep statement, starting to meet cooler people in my life

  18. Love it!
    Sooo helpful and so true.
    Sometimes we cross paths with people who are angry or carry a sadness and we rush to judge them….behind every soul there is a story, many times painful….we must smile at them, sometimes with our smile we make their days :)

  19. Hey Chris,

    Just found your blog last night and have been addicted to it since! Its such a fresh breath of air hearing these universal truths and life lessons in such a down to earth way that I can relate too.

    I have read so many books and listened to audios about success and psychology and these same truths but this is the first time I have seen it laid out so clearly in this unique kind of style.

    I like to watch what people do as well as what they say and by observing what you are doing I am starting to see that I can take the truths I learn from the “experts” or from life in general, and put it into my own words and my own explanations to understand it in a way that hits closer to home.

    And as far as what you are actually saying I am learning and re-learning so many awesome lessons in a way that I can really relate to and that actually gets me pumped to make an effort to apply them in my own life. You are high-test fuel for my mind!

    Thanks for what your doing, I think its FUCKING BAD-ASS!

  20. Chris,
    Whilst I can’t fault the fact that your advice seems to help some people, I feel that your position that you create what happens in your life to be more than a little simplistic, and deeply unfair in that it attributes responsibility to those who are at the receiving end of other people’s behaviour. If a person abuses you or treats you like shit, that is 100% the responsibility of that person, not you. To suggest otherwise, in any fashion (e.g. ‘want people to be nice to you? Be nice to them.’ ‘Haters attract haters’ etc) takes that responsibility away from the perpetrator and puts it onto the victim, which is deeply unfair. By all means, model the kind of behaviour you would like to see in those around you, but never accept responsibility for somebody else’s actions. Life treats everybody differently – to say that we are in control of all our experiences and the way that we get treated places an inordinate amount of responsibilty on the receiver, and none on the perpetrator. This kind of logic lets the kind of people that victimise others completely off the hook and blames the recipient.

  21. I agree with you Pamela, I am so tired of the victim-blaming prevalent in our culture. Like if a woman gets raped the first question is always what was she wearing, why was she out alone, etc…the reality is the abuser is always responsible for his/her own actions, NOT the victim. I think Chris’s message was that we should strive to be respectful towards everyone we meet and that is a good message to put out there. Unfortunately shitty things do happen to good people all of the time and even if you’re an awesome kind of person, you can’t avoid that.

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