Passive-aggressive behavior is a way of expressing anger in a seemingly non-hostile way — a deliberate and masked way of expressing covert feelings. Passive-aggressive behavior, while expressed in many different ways sarcasm, the silent treatment, running late, to name a few , has the same roots: There is an underlying fear and avoidance of direct conflict, yet a feeling of powerlessness and helplessness. There can be a number of reasons for the cause of the behavior.
Passive Aggressive Personality
Passive Aggressiveness: Why We Do it and How to Stop | Talkspace
And why is it so hard to identify passive-aggressive behavior in co-workers and partners? People who have passive-aggressive traits suppress their angry responses because they fear conflict, and the anger comes out in other, more passive ways. Or maybe Jeff is furious with his boss, but instead of standing up to him, he forgets to mail the bills, and the business gets a bunch of late fees. Because we are often unaware we are being passive-aggressive, it is difficult to stop behaving this way — even when we hate the results. We like to give people the benefit of the doubt or think positively. So, when someone we are connected with breaks a promise, is always late or never follows through, we make excuses for them.
How to Spot and Stop Passive-Aggressive Behavior
Show less Someone who is passive-aggressive typically seeks to avoid conflict. Subversive passive-aggressive behavior can go unnoticed as you mask underlying frustrations with superficial courtesies.
Most of us are passive-aggressive PA at times. Although much of the communication literature tells us we should be direct and assertive, I've always told my clients there is a time and place for different communication styles. For instance, if you've had your car in to a repair shop several times for the same problem and they want to charge you for fixing it again, being verbally aggressive might accomplish your agenda.