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How to Deal With Someone Who Is Irresponsible

by Allison Horky

Dealing with irresponsibility requires patience, composure and a knowledge of the person's common behaviors. A person may act irresponsible because he is stressed, under a lot of pressure or unclear about his expectations. These conversations are best had between people who know each other well or have a working relationship. If you do not have a developed relationship with the person, consider asking another person who does to talk to him.

Prepare yourself to confront and talk to the irresponsible person. Especially if you know the person well, gather stories from your past that demonstrates a change in behavior, if the irresponsibility is new. If the person has been irresponsible many times over, note situations where this kind of behavior has become consistent. Also, prepare yourself mentally for what will be a tough conversation. Do not confront a person when you are feeling down, stressed yourself or overwhelmed.

Establish a time and place to talk to the person. It should not be when he is about to walk out the door or if he has friends over. Evening after work or once he has settled in for the night is a good time. Ask him if he has time to talk at the moment. Reduce distractions, such as music, television or animals.

Tell her that you want to talk to her about her behavior lately because it seems irresponsible. If the person is a good friend or family member, let her know that you are concerned because you care. If the person is a coworker or acquaintance, state other reasons for wanting to talk about the irresponsibility, such as not meeting project goals or complicating the relationship between a mutual friend. Always listen, be respectful and respond accordingly during these types of conversations.

Ask how you can help him become more responsible or accountable to others. Be prepared with suggestions, such as weekly check-ins or referral to a therapist, if the irresponsibility is the response to a deeper psychological problem, such as depression.

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