Coworkers are like family — we don't get to choose them. When you said yes to that great gig with flexibility, excellent benefits, and tons of vacation, you didn't know you'd be working beside Snipey Suzy or Condescending Connie. So how do you deal when you have to work with someone you truly can't stand? We've got the goods on how to make your work life bearable again.

Recognize they're not trying to drive you crazy

Here's something key to keep in mind for every relationship, not only a workplace one. Not everyone is like you. Expecting people to think, perform, and react like you isn't only unrealistic — it's a recipe for constant frustration.

In her book, How to Work With and Lead People Not Like You, Kelly McDonald notes it's important to recognize that this person isn't trying to drive you bananas. They're just being themselves. Just that little bit of perspective can help keep your own reactions to their maddening sardine lunch or hour-long personal calls in check.

Manage the only thing you can control

You can't control how your co-worker runs the Monday morning meeting or responds to email. But you can control your reaction. In fact, it's the only thing you can control.

Some experts recommend a daily relaxation method. Instead of letting a behavior trigger a negative reaction, reframe the trigger — say, when your coworker tells a long, unrelated personal anecdote that makes the meeting run overtime — to take ten slow, deep breaths. Or maybe you start listening to a morning meditation on your way into work.

"Cultivating a diplomatic poker face is important," Ben Dattner, an organizational psychologist and author of The Blame Game told LifeHack. "You need to be able to come across as professional and positive."

Why? Research shows the more people like you, the easier, more productive, and more profitable, your life will be. In a way, you're being healthily selfish, and protecting your own reputation and sanity at work.

Take it personally

This can be hard to hear, but might it be that the thing that drives you crazy about your coworker is actually a quality you hate in yourself? Peter Bregman, author of Leading with Emotional Courage, says recognizing this possibility can make working with someone you don't like suddenly a lot more interesting.

"Getting to know them better, and accepting the parts of them you don't like, is actually getting to know yourself better and accepting the parts of yourself you don't like," he wrote for the Harvard Business Review. "Being compassionate with yourself is the key to being compassionate with others. Before you know it, you'll actually begin to like people you never liked before. Maybe you'll even feel like helping them run those meeting more productively."

Recognize the value of a squeaky wheel

While it might make your life more fun to work on a team of people you'd like to spend a week with at the beach, it's not exactly the best strategy for an effective work team.

"You need people who have different points of view and aren't afraid to argue," Robert Sutton, a professor of management science at Stanford University, told LifeHack. "They are the kind of people who stop the organization from doing stupid things."

The coworker who is always negative? Seen another way, they might have a gift for seeing growth opportunities.

Work closer together

Instead of trying to avoid the person, try the opposite tactic. Seek them out. Work together.

"One of the best ways to get to like someone you don't like is to work on a project that requires coordination," Sutton told the Harvard Business Review. Working together will help you understand why this person is the way they are — a teething baby at home or a chronic health issue, say — and that can help you develop empathy.

"You might feel compassion instead of irritation," said Daniel Goleman, the co-director of the Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations at Rutgers University, and author of The Brain and Emotional Intelligence: New Insights.

Worst case? You see your common human bonds, Jenny Brockis, a medical practitioner and the founder of Brainfit told The Huffington Post Australia, whether that means bonding over rush hour traffic or the latest BBC period piece.

Give zero f*cks

This might be your last recourse, but if you truly can't find a single redeeming quality to this person you feel truly stuck, Sutton recommends you "practice the fine art of emotional detachment or not giving a shit."

This is, put another way, a more pessimistic version of managing the only thing you can control: yourself. Only instead of deep breathing and singing kumbaya under your breath, you're effectively shrugging it off.

"If he's being a pain but you don't feel the pain, then there's no problem," said Goleman.

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The Federal Reserve sets the guardrails for the federal funds rate, and through that helps control the money supply for the nation.

When you take out a loan for a car, charge something to your credit card, or get a personal line of credit, there is going to be an interest rate that applies to your loan.

A lot of different factors go into what you will be charged, including your own personal credit score. But even those with flawless credit still see a minimum charge that they can't get around. That all goes back to the Federal Funds Rate.

One thing consumers rarely realize is that all of our banks are lending money to each other every night. Banks are legally required to maintain a certain percentage of their deposits in non-interest-bearing accounts at the Federal Reserve to ensure they have enough money to cover any withdrawals that may unexpectedly come up. However, deposits can fluctuate and it's very common for some banks to exceed the requirement on certain days while some fall short. In cases like this, banks actually lend each other money to ensure they meet the minimum balance. It's a bit hard to imagine these multibillion-dollar financial institutions needing to borrow money to tide them over for a bit, but it happens every single night at the Federal Reserve. It's also a nice deal for those with balances above the reserve balance requirement to earn a bit of money with cash that would normally just be sitting there.

The Federal Reserve The Federal Reserve


The exact interest rate the banks will charge each other is a matter of negotiation between them, but the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) (the arm of the Federal Reserve that sets monetary policy) meets eight times a year to set a target rate. They evaluate a multitude of economic indicators including unemployment, inflation, and consumer confidence to decide the best rate to keep the country in business. The weighted average of all interest rates across these interbank loans is the effective federal funds rate.

This rate has a huge impact on the economy overall as well as your personal finances. The federal funds rate is essentially the cheapest money available to a bank and that feeds into all of the other loans they make. Banks will add a slight upcharge to the rate set by the Fed to determine what is the lowest interest that they will announce for their most creditworthy customers, also known as the prime rate. If you have a variable interest rate loan (very common with credit cards and some student loans), it's likely that the interest rate you pay is a set percentage on top of that prime rate that your lender is paying. That's why in times of low interest rates (it was set at 0% during the Great Recession), a lot of borrowers should go for fixed interest rate loans that won't increase. However, if the federal funds rate was relatively high (it went up to 20% in the early 1980's), a variable interest rate loan may be a better decision as you would be charged less interest should the rate drop without the need to refinance.

The federal funds rate also has a major impact on your investment portfolio. The stock market reacts very strongly to any changes in interest rates from the Federal Reserve, as a lower rate makes it cheaper for companies to borrow and reinvest while a higher rate may restrict capital and slow short-term growth. If you have a significant portion of your investments in equities, a small change in the federal funds rate can have a large impact on your net worth.

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