The funny thing is that Sarah Elliston never realized she was “a difficult person,” –someone who harangued people until she got her way, threw snip fits and temper tantrums, talked over her bosses and pointed out what she thought were their misconceptions. In her family, where she felt bullied, the only way she knew how to get someone’s attention and approval was to voice her opinion–and loudly! Without standing her ground, how could she do what she thought was best for herself and everyone else around her. She wasn’t intentionally mean-spirited. She was just trying to do what she thought was RIGHT!
Until a kind, but firm, boss woke her up! With great compassion, and strength, her boss pointed out that her actions had consequences. That in being “difficult,” she was not only disrupting the office camaraderie and production, but impeding her own professional advancement.
That’s the beginning of Sarah’s transformation– when she started on the journey to leave behind the difficult person, and become the woman who teaches others how to deal with difficult people. Sarah “Sam” Elliston is now bringing forth her vital manual on how to awaken the challenging personality, and change both the relationship and the environment with her new book Dealing with Difficult People; Lessons Learned from a Difficult Person.
Today, Elliston is a highly successful workshop leader and trainer, who offers wisdom learned the hard way–and through rigorous study and certification in many areas of professional training that aid her in her work — Values Realization, Parent Effectiveness Training and Reality Therapy.
ABOUT SARAH ELLISON
Sarah (Sam) Elliston is an expert in the art of Dealing with Difficult People. She is a top workshop leader and a member of the faculty of the William Glasser Institute, which espouses “Reality Therapy” to foster behavioral change.
But her instructional career began long before she even became aware that she was herself a “difficult person,” traits that began in Lincoln MA, where she grew up. For more than 30 years she has been teaching and training, first as a high school teacher in Ohio and Cincinnati—and then as an administrator in the not-for-profit sector.
Elliston, who holds a BA in International Relations from the University of Maine and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Brown University, spent 23 years with United Way’s Volunteer Center, coordinating volunteers for city government, training local volunteer coordinators and board volunteers, and managing the volunteer program for United Way.
While at United Way, she developed and managed a certificate-earning series on volunteer management with Northern Kentucky University and The Union Institute. She also taught both undergraduate and graduate courses in Volunteer Program Management at Northern Kentucky University.
Her career at United Way included initiating and managing the Municipal Volunteer Program — Volunteer Cincinnati — for 15 years. She has presented at the International Conference on Volunteer Administration, the Conference for National and Community Service and regional and state conferences in Ohio, Kentucky, Iowa, New York, Michigan and Illinois. She is a Certified Volunteer Administrator, the highest level of professional certification in the field.
In addition to her work as a volunteer administrator, Elliston pursued a course of study that would bring her to her current area of expertise. She is now certified in Values Realization, Parent Effectiveness Training and Reality Therapy. She has served as a board member and president of the Values Realization Institute.
Elliston’s passion is training and designing an experience that allows learners to find a process that works for them to make the changes they desire. She is a gentle, persistent, humorous and intelligent trainer, drawing from many sources and always willing to admit that she might not know the answer..