Do You Have an Intimidating Personality?
There is a difference between having a strong character and developing an intimidating personality. Some people have to fight and struggle all their lives. This moderates their character, but it can destroy gentleness. The worst part is that the battles they fight make them defensive all the time. They always have their shield up and feel like they are in enemy territory.
We’ve all known people who seem tough on the outside but have a big heart. They are often professionally and socially successful, but there is an atmosphere of fear around them. They react strongly to things and others end up being afraid of them.
“Gentleness and flexibility are intimately related to life, while hardness and rigidity are associated with death.”
Those with intimidating personalities often don’t realize the effect they have on other people. They know they are good people and they don’t understand why others are frightened of their overly tough expressions or gestures. To find out if you fall into this category, ask yourself if you have one or more of the following characteristics.
An intimidating personality, surrounded by silence
If people around you remain silent after you speak, it’s time to ask yourself if you have an intimidating personality. It’s possible that you are too abrupt when you speak. You could be too short or absolute when you speak. It’s also possible that others admire you so much that they are afraid to disappoint you.
It works like this: you don’t express opinions, you give conclusions. It’s as if you are saying the last word on the subject. Your words imply that responses are not allowed and won’t be considered. This is tantamount to ending the conversation. You talk so that others listen to you and you use an authoritative tone. In this situation, not everyone will be eager to continue chatting.
When you have an intimidating personality, your presence might dampen the mood of an otherwise lively and participative meeting. People fall silent when you arrive, or they just seem unsettled. You might realize that people don’t act spontaneously when you are around.
You feel it’s very important to be “sincere”
People who have intimidating personalities tend to be overly honest. They brag about being honest and not mincing words about their thoughts or feelings. However, they might be confusing sincerity with being rude or inconsiderate.
These types of personalities tend to reject excessively nice manners. They feel that the more raw and direct the delivery, the truer something is. They assume that saying things with tact is the same as falsifying or disguising the truth. They don’t see the difference between kindness and flattery.
The truth is that telling the “truth” in an excessively rude way only makes people feel bad. Sometimes the truth is told in such a brutal way that the listener completely forgets the content. She only remembers the manner in which it was told. At the end of the day, if you say something in a rude way, no one will listen to what you said.
You scold others when they show signs of weakness.
If you have an intimidating personality, it’s difficult for you to understand other’s weaknesses and fragility. When someone tells you about a problem, you energetically encourage them to solve it as soon as possible. You feel that the other person needs a voice of authority to tel them to overcome the situation, not a shoulder to cry on.
The point is that human beings go through times when we need emotional comfort from other people. We don’t want them to feel bad for us, we just want them to listen to us and be there without judgment. We don’t want someone to tell us what to do. Many times we aren’t asking for someone else to tell us which path to follow, we just need comfort while we regroup.
Having an intimidating personality causes other people to keep their distance. Being so tough on the outside ends up isolating you from affection and warmth. Excessively defensive attitudes usually turn against you in the end. Maybe you aren’t a “Mary Poppins” or a “Mother Theresa”, but that doesn’t mean you need to be overly hard on everyone else. You have a lot to share, so it is worth your time to reconsider how you relate and communicate with others.