Fearful People Are Easy To Control

"The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers." – Ralph Nader


Those who try to control other people simply put are just not nice people- and most likely have deeper issues. A controlling person would like to dictate every move you make including what you ate if they could. He or she wants to have the first words to say…and the last. You know the person I am talking about because you're thinking about that person right now. The one that everyone tries to avoid at all cost. These people try to dominate every aspect your life or the office.

Some people are hard to work with no matter what you do. The hardest part about difficult co-workers is – self control. I have had my share of hard to deal with co-workers. The one that whine every shift about how bad their life is and how terrible company treats them. I have worked with those that are about to retire and find everything to do that is not work and complains about being over worked. I have worked alongside people who have bad breath, bad body odor, loud voices, angry outburst, story tellers who flat out lie to you, and the ones that step on every button you have to just plainly pisses you off. The hardest lesson I have learned is this: I have to control myself so they don't. I don't like the lesson that I learned. It takes a lot of me to stay in control.

When in fact I would like to blast that person with negative, sarcastic come backs that make me feel good at the moment. You know the kind that feels like you are spewing green pea soup and your head spins around until they are speechless. When you argue with them, gossip about them, ignore them, or criticize them. You give them an excuse for more bad behavior.

Their negative behavior causes fear in the people around them which makes them shrink back and not confront the controlling person.

Here are a few signs you work with a controlling co-worker:

·       You Are Afraid to Disagree

·       You Hesitate Before Asking for Things You Need or Want

·       You Feel Angry After Interacting With Your co-worker

·       You Observe Passive Aggressive Controlling Behaviors


How to Tame the Control Freak

You don't have to work in a area long before you see who the control freak is. The one that controls the temperature of the room, to the way you arrange the pencils on the desk to how many pencils should be sharpened or used at one time.

Most control freaks feel they need to retain control because they will lose status or not be needed. Therefore they do not want any help to look overly important, and but they will complain they have to do everything themselves.

Studies have shown that control freaks are insecure, with a low self esteem. They do not like new things or new people coming into their surrounding areas because they have a fear of new and different things.

Stroke their Ego

Because they fight to retain control, find something nice to say about their job and how they are performing. Yes this is probably the hardest thing to do to someone you already know is going to in turn blast you back with green nasty spew.

Stand your Ground

Even though you have done all you can to nice to this person stand your ground. When you know you are right and you have to have something from this person and they still want to throw a temper tantrum, curse, raise their voice and belittle you – in a professional way of course. You must not back down from doing your job because of the control freak.

Ask Questions

Because their method of delivery can often be obnoxious, other people in the office tend to dismiss control freaks as bossy and attempting to control the situation. In reality, they just want to be part of things and in fact can provide valuable input if people would listen. The next time your control freak co-worker starts bossing you around, ask pointed questions. Ask why they want things a certain way, or why they want give you the folder, why they have to have supplies tucked away in their office instead of the supply room.

Reach out for help

Sometimes the control freak is firm on their control that is makes working with them next to impossible. Reach out for help, speak to their supervisor. These are people I refer to as dragons. When their mouth opens they are fire breathers that burn anyone in their path and they do not care. When you meet a dragon you will have no choice but to go to the next level of help. Let your boss know that you are not there to complain, that you are seeking to have the best and least conflict possible with this person. Let your supervisor know that the control freak dragon (you may want to find other words to use) is preventing you from performing your best having to take the time to go through the conflicts of dealing with this one person. Seek resolutions that can work not only for you, but help others as well.

In closing remember the only person you can control is yourself. The control freak dragon has no control over you. The way you respond is the only control you give to them. Sometimes the ole method of counting to 10 is not enough. Walk away – or think before you respond. They are already miserable people don't join them.


Would you like to use this article on your blog, ezine, or newsletter? You have my permission to share it in its entirety with the following blurb below:


Angela Brooks is a mental health nurse devoting over 25 years to the nursing field. Executive Director with young living , She is the author The Nurses Voice, and is a contributor to the nursing magazines "Scrubs Magazine" and "NurseTogether.com".

She is the founder of angelabrook.com, a company dedicated to helping empower nurses who works in the mental health field. Not just for nurses – but those that nurse others in life. She is the nurses voice, the voice for those unheard.


Share your Thoughts with us
Leave your comments in the box below

We Would Love to Hear From You

10 thoughts on “Fearful People Are Easy To Control”

  1. Read somewhere once that a family is controlled by its sickest member…to which I immediately thought, only if YOU allow it!! Great article! 🙂

  2. Anne (Annie) Berryhill

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this article Angela! Often in the moment, it is so challenging to not engage with the controlling person. Determining ahead of time, the best strategy for dealing with them is key. I think that we don’t always think about this in an objective way as you have laid out here. Great stuff!

  3. You are more than welcome to share the post on your blog – include the bio at the bottom to go with the post then come back and share your link on my FB wall and I will share your blog 🙂

  4. Great Article Angela. It seems Fear is everywhere and we can be so easily controlled by it. You gave excellent examples and descriptions of what happens when fear enters in and how we are all affected if we are not aware! Thank you.

  5. Love this Angela! Most times when we encounter a control freak, the natural tendency is to either fight back or avoid them altogether. Unless they’re a dragon (love that!), your approach of understanding the root cause and working WITH it, instead of against it will disarm a control freak nearly every time. Thanks for a great post!

  6. Here here! I have worked with many dragons. Thanks for iterating it so well how to identify one and how to deal with one. For some reason, there are still way too many dragons out in the workforce. We need more voices of the dragon slayer. Thanks Angela, or shall I call you Angel! 😀

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.