Bullies, persistent ex’s, and nosy neighbors are some of the most frustrating humans in the world. They can drive you nuts. The sad part is that a good conversation doesn’t work. They don’t get the message and they keep coming back. The only solution is to get to a point and tell them to keep off. It’s nasty, it’s messy, but you don’t have much of a choice.
There is only one way of telling someone to leave you alone that actually works. Tell them directly. Be firm and spell it out. Or else, you will be dealing with their crap until eternity. Point out your reasons and address the effects of those reasons. Focus your conversation on the issue, not the person. Avoid back and forth arguments. Deliver your message with finality. Most importantly, keep off their lane first.
Among the things I hope to never do is to tell someone off. Some things are never easy to say, how do you start? Do you wait until you are totally worn out and yell at them “LEAVE ME ALONE!” Regardless of the timing or wording, you are never ready enough. It’s a necessary evil.
Preston Ni in his book ‘How to communicate effectively and handle difficult people’ gives ten keys that can help you handle difficult people. Among them is to put the person in the spotlight. When telling someone to leave, control the conversation, don’t be defensive, this gives the person more power and is likely to sway the results. Address the aggressor simply but powerfully. Here are the steps to follow.
8 ways to tell someone to leave you alone
1. Prep your speech
To avoid falling short of words, prepare beforehand what you are going to say and how you are going to say it. This helps you to maintain focus even when anger, fear, or sadness overwhelms you.
2. Call the person to attention
This would be best if it’s in a secluded place. Where possible don’t give them the room to opt-out, it’s your time to call the shots. By now your backup should be ready if there’s any. In a case where you are addressing a bully, for example, you may need someone on your side to guard you if they try to intimidate you.
3. Address them firmly but respectably
Begin with calling their name (not pet name) then proceed to say what you had prepared to say. Remember your intention is not to hurt them but to make them leave you alone. You want action, not revenge.
Here is an example of how you can pass the message. “Jim, I’m tired of always having you around me yet our relationship ended. I no longer want to discuss what went on, we are already past that. Keep your distance and I will keep mine. Are we clear?”
There are two possible responses you should expect. One, the response could be a remorseful ‘okay’. This is what we hope for but it almost never happens. Two, an argument; when the person tries to defend themselves, let them talk and do not interrupt. Once they are done, repeat your message firmly and candidly. For instance, “Jim, I said I no longer want to see you, we are over, period.”
The alternative of this is to send a message with a warning, for instance, “Jim, you have been stalking me for long, I have waited for you stop but you keep going on and on. Stop following me! The next time it happens I will contact the authorities”
Here you are giving an ultimatum and you have no room for negotiation. As soon as you pass the message, walk away. Don’t wait until they start having an emotional outburst; walk out and say goodbye.
4. Do not yell or lose your cool
In anger and frustration, it becomes easy to lose composure, misjudge, and utter regretful words. The challenge is, when you take this approach, you relinquish your sobriety and instead of addressing the issue, you intensify it.
5. Do not engage in an argument
As earlier mentioned, you need to take control of the conversation. Desist from picking arguments. Say what you have to say and leave it at that. if they choose to respond, don’t interrupt, let them finish then repeat your message.
6. Do not give room for excuses
Excuses will only lengthen the process and frustrate you because they create room for false hope meaning the person you want to get away from keeps coming back. On the contrary, if you allow the other person to give you excuses, you lose your guard. Create no room for either of you to give excuses.
7. Do not delay
I’m sure you have already discovered that there is no perfect time for this, delaying talking about it only makes it harder. Let’s assume your ex keeps pestering you to reconcile yet you have already moved on. Does it make any sense to delay talking to them? It’s in your best interest to approach them as soon as possible.
8. Do not avoid them
There is an annoying law of nature that draws people to you when you keep off. Instead of ducking every time you see your ex on the corridors, make peace with it. Clear the air and move on.
How to Get Rid Of a Guy Who Won’t Leave You Alone
If a guy is obsessed with you, just gather courage, face him or her and say it. What next? If you are lucky, they will keep off for sure but in most circumstances, the trend changes gradually. This is where the challenge is; you need to maintain your stand. Don’t tell them off this week and go scrolling their social media pages the following week, leaving emojis and memes. We both know that will disqualify the whole process. If they are to leave you alone, you need to have left already.