Ever heard or used this word?

As of today, I'll be dedicating select blog posts to examining the meaning of words most people are unfamiliar with and tying them, of course, to the world of psychology and human behavior. 

This week, let's explore the meaning of the word curmudgeon

According to Dictionary.com, a curmudgeon is a bad-tempered, difficult, cantankerous person

It brings to mind irritable characters like Grumpy from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Scrooge from Charles' Dickins' "A Christmas Carol," and maybe even Donald Trump.

We've all had to contend with so-called curmudgeons at work; in most cases, it's our own boss. We can also point to at least one person in our family known for being a major crank, whether it's a meddling grandparent or nosy aunt.

It's safe to say we all have days in which we become curmudgeons. A couple of months ago, on the way to work, I noticed I had a flat tire. Having to take the car to the shop in the pouring rain wasn't fun, and I was especially peeved over losing my lunch break to do this. 

When things don't go our way, we become irascible, dour, surly, grouchy. Thankfully, our attitude can change for the better with the smallest of things -- a call from our spouse, a visit from an old friend, a delectable piece of chocolate. 

So the next time someone you know is in a bad mood, ask them why they're being a curmudgeon. The world alone is bound to pique their curiosity and make them feel better!

Had you ever heard, read, or used the word prior to reading this post?

Check out more posts by clicking here: How to Understand People

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