It's not every day you come across an article that beings like this:
The world is full of assholes. Wherever you live, whatever you do, odds are you’re surrounded by assholes. The question is, what to do about it?What to do? The first step is to find someone who has done some research into, well, the sphincters among us.
Robert Sutton, a psychology professor at Stanford University, has stepped up to answer this eternal question. He’s the author of a new book, The Asshole Survival Guide, which is basically what it sounds like: a guide for surviving the assholes in your life.Can you really tell an asshole when you see one?
Asshole survival, Sutton says, is a craft, not a science, meaning one can be good or bad at it. His book is about getting better at it.
Sutton won't call Trump an asshole, not openly, but admits he checks off all the boxes. He offers various strategies for dealing with sphincters that can vary according to whether the offender is in a position of power, a boss, or just an associate or co-worker. If you're struggling with someone of that exaggerated anatomy, you might find this article worth a read.There are a lot of academic definitions, but here’s how I define it: An asshole is someone who leaves us feeling demeaned, de-energized, disrespected, and/or oppressed. In other words, someone who makes you feel like dirt.
I would make a distinction between temporary and certified assholes, because all of us under the wrong conditions can be temporary assholes. I'm talking about somebody who is consistently this way, who consistently treats other people this way. I think it’s more complicated than simply saying an asshole is someone who doesn’t care about other people. In fact, some of them really do care — they want to make you feel hurt and upset, they take pleasure in it.