7 Tips on Dealing with a Know-it-All Friend ...

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7 Tips on Dealing with a Know-it-All Friend ...
7 Tips on Dealing with a Know-it-All Friend ...

That friend who always offers her unsolicited advice and thinks she knows everything can get a bit overbearing, but with some tips on dealing with a know-it-all up your sleeve, you can effectively deal with that friend. That friend can really get under your skin, especially when she sits there spouting out her “worldly” wisdom on a topic that she knows nothing about. She often seems demeaning and acts as if she is better than you. Instead of having an out-and-out brawl (which you might just want to do), avoid hurt feelings and bad karma with these tips on dealing with a know-it-all.

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1

Offer a Little Attention

One of the best tips on dealing with a know-it-all is to give her a little attention. After all, attention is really what she is after. Show a little enthusiasm about what she says to give her just enough attention; but don’t overdo it, as this can result in an even bigger ego and lead to her sharing even more unsolicited advice.

***

Dealing with a know-it-all friend can be a difficult and trying experience. Everyone has encountered someone who seems to have an opinion on every subject, and who is always ready to give unsolicited advice. While it’s not always easy to deal with this type of person, there are some tips that can help make the situation more manageable.

One of the best tips on dealing with a know-it-all is to offer a little attention. Attention is often what the know-it-all is seeking, so showing a little enthusiasm about what she says can give her the attention she desires without feeding her ego too much. However, it’s important to not overdo it, as this can lead to her giving even more unsolicited advice.

In addition to offering a little attention, it’s important to be assertive and set boundaries. Letting the know-it-all know that you don’t need their advice can be difficult, but it’s important to be firm in order to get your point across. It’s also important to be respectful and polite when doing this, as this can help to avoid any potential conflict.

2

Ignore Her

While offering some attention is an effective way to deal with a know-it-all, sometimes you just have to ignore her. If she keeps going on and on, just ignore her. Continue your conversation with other people and don’t respond to what she says. Eventually, she’ll take the hint (hopefully).

***

Sometimes, the best course of action is to simply carry on as if she isn't insisting on having the last word in every topic. By doing this, you empower yourself to direct the flow of conversation and keep the atmosphere positive among the group. Keep in mind, however, that completely ostracizing someone can be hurtful, so use this tactic sparingly and with sensitivity. Balancing this approach with kindness and inclusivity can be a subtle art, but it orchestrates a more enjoyable social dynamic without direct confrontation.

3

Don’t Take It Personal

The know-it-all will likely have some not-so-nice things to say at times, and these things will likely be about you sometimes. Instead of getting hot under the collar or thinking that something is wrong with you, remember not to take her comments personally. If you do, you could really start to develop a complex, which isn’t at all necessary.

***

Dealing with a know-it-all friend can be a difficult task. It is important to remember that this person may be trying to show off their knowledge and skills, but it can come off as condescending and disrespectful. It is important to not take their comments personally, as it can lead to feelings of insecurity and even depression. Instead, try to redirect the conversation to a more positive topic, or simply ignore the comment altogether. It is also important to remain confident and remember that you have valuable opinions and knowledge too. Acknowledge their contributions, while still standing up for yourself and your beliefs.

4

Try to Understand

There is likely a good reason why the know-it-all is the way she is. She may have self-esteem issues herself, or she may not be happy in her life. Try to wear her shoes for a little bit and understand where she is coming from. Doing so could help you gain a better understanding of why she acts the way that she does, and you might actually even feel bad for her.

***

Understanding doesn't mean you have to accept the disruptive behavior. It's about finding empathy within yourself to see past the facade of confidence that a know-it-all often displays. They might actually be compensating for feelings of inadequacy or fear of being perceived as unintelligent. Recognizing these potential roots of their behavior can shift your perspective from irritation to compassion. It allows for a kinder interpersonal dynamic and may even pave the way for them to open up and show vulnerability, which can soften their know-it-all tendencies.

5

Avoid Her

Sometimes the best way to deal with a know-it-all is avoidance. Don’t invite her out regularly, or try to avoid places where you know she will be. It may seem cruel to avoid a friend, but hey – you’ve got to keep your sanity, too.

***

If her presence consistently drains your energy or makes group dynamics tense, it's okay to opt for self-preservation. Create healthy boundaries—politely decline invitations when necessary or suggest alternative plans with others. Remember, maintaining your mental and emotional well-being is paramount, and sometimes that means taking space from those who challenge it, even if done inadvertently. It’s not about being mean, but about being mindful of your own needs.

6

Turn the Table

When she starts spewing out unsolicited advice or she starts going on and on about something that she is clearly wrong about, try turning the table around on her. Correct her and offer references to back yourself up. Or, before she even starts on a tangent, you can start spewing out information and advice to her.

***

However, remember to be diplomatic about it. You don't want to create an unnecessary argument or hurt your friendship over pride. Use phrases like, "Have you considered this perspective?" or, "I recently read something that suggested another view – may I share it with you?" This way, you're not directly challenging her, but rather offering alternative viewpoints in a manner that can foster constructive dialogue instead of confrontation. It's about adding to the conversation, not shutting it down.

7

Talk to Her

You may just need to address the situation directly. Tread lightly, as you don’t want to insult her. Find the right time to talk to her and make sure it is in a comfortable setting. Know what you are going to say and use kind words, as you don’t want to hurt her, but you do want to stop feeling uncomfortable yourself. Tell her how it makes you feel and hopefully, she’ll respond well.

There is nothing fun about spending time with someone who won’t let you get a word in edgewise and acts like they are the be-all and end-all of everything. Do you have a know-it-all friend? How do you cope?

Feedback Junction

Where Thoughts and Opinions Converge

There are only so many times when you can forgive a friend for the unsolicited advice she gives you. If it becomes too much, ignore her slowly and recycle that friend hoping that you will find one that is worth your time and efforts.

Thanks Diane. It's hard to let go of those who you thought were your friends, esp those who you were friends with for 10 years, trust me I know! ..but it will hurt less in the long run. Stay strong :-)

I like #6.

I have a couple of those, I just distanced myself from one & said nothing to the other... then watched as what she told me happened to her

I agree with Prolivic. I had to let go of my know it all friend who also had a serious superiority complex. After almost 10 years of hearing her rip people apart behind their backs, pointing out every ones flaws/mistakes, bragging about how great she is at this and that, quick to discredit my opinion and of others...it finally was enough for me!

Don't do that friends are great! Take care of each other and are helpful and sweet. Don't forget all the nice things friends can do for each other.

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