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If there is one universal truth to understand in your life is that you can’t control how other people act, you can only control your reaction to them. A non-compliant patient can be difficult to deal with because you completely understand the problem but they seem to be fighting you at every turn. If you take a step back and realize that your anxiety level will only make things worse, you may find yourself in a position to truly help the patient through their stubborn behavior. Here are 4 ways you can stay calm in this situation.

Take a Step Back and Listen

When someone is fighting your care, there is a lot more involved than simple stubbornness. If they are being non-compliant, rather than fighting them on the issue take a step back. Talk to them about their concerns and listen to their responses. Then, form a thoughtful plan that will allow them to give you the access you need to help them in the best way possible.

Recognize Your Own Body Language

Our own unconscious visual cues send very important messages to the people we’re speaking with. What are you saying to them with your own body posture and physical cues? If you’re presenting to them in a way that is aggressive or frustrated, it can only make the situation worse. Pay attention to what your body language is saying.

Put Yourself in their Shoes

Empathy is the cornerstone of a good nursing practice. When someone is fighting you even when your treatment will help them, it is important to think about how you would feel if you were in the same position. Think about it from their perspective and then offer a solution that sounds equitable for everyone involved. This can help you both remain calm.

Be Willing to Ask for Help

It is never a bad thing to ask for help when you need it. If a patient is continuing to be non-compliant about their treatments, and you are unable to get through to them, go get a third party who can help. This can be another doctor, a nurse, or even a family member who can help talk them into doing what is right.

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