Toxic Workplace-two words define everything that might be going wrong in your life. We tend to spend a big chunk of our life in our workplace. We learn, share, and grow as an individual while climbing the career ladder. However, these winning moments also overshadows our efforts, mental stress, and ignorance that we take every day. Firstly, your job is your self-worth. You do what you love. Honestly, your job pays your bills. But can money drive your mental health?
That constant fear in your gut.
The constant pressure to impress your boss.
Those anxiety-fueled thoughts, restless nights, never-ending nightmare. Yes, you’re right. Your job is killing you.
Is your boss responsible for mental trauma? Do you enjoy your office environment? Ask yourself.
As “The Toxic Boss Survival Guide” says – It’s easy to spot a toxic leader. They’re controlling, egomaniacal, two-faced, and narcissistic.
But when you know your boss is killing your work culture and affecting your mental health, how do you cope up with such situations.
Work on Controllable Task
Working in fear is damaging your physical and mental health, according to health experts. A toxic boss brings worry into your life and work. You don’t enjoy your work because you have constant pressure to impress and deliver. This takes a toll on your skills and experience. The fear of losing a job, being bullied, or targeted for every silly mistake are some of the reasons for your mental fatigue.
In such a situation, you must stay calm. Pick things that make you feel positive, create a balance between work and personal life, and detach yourself from work in your free time. One of the best advice ever heard- work on your controllable task and stop worrying about uncontrollable things. You can control your work, next presentations, but people’s reaction, getting a raise is something beyond your control. This allows focusing on the happenings that you can control.
Exercise, Food, Sleep and Repeat
I don’t have to emphasize on the benefits of exercise, food, and sleep. Kickstart your day with a power exercise and health-loaded breakfast. You can pick yoga, meditations, a brisk walking under the sun, or a Zumba training. Keep yourself active and nourish your body with a balanced diet.
Sleep deprivation can hinder your ability to react to complex challenges at a personal and professional level. When work is keeping you all night, try sleep hacks- read a book, pick a coloring book, use morning for your worry time, exercise for 20 minutes, practice sleep meditation before bed or set up a sleep routine.
Connect with your team/colleagues
A very early sign of toxic, dysfunctional workplace brings significant communication challenges and often between multiple departments, employees, supervisors, and management.
We’re a social animal by nature. Community is a baseline of our behavior. But you might shut yourself from co-workers because of the micro-management from your boss. You put yourself in a social isolation zone that can bring loneliness. Such isolation is linked to increasing levels of stress hormones, accelerated cognitive decline, and poor sleep patterns.
Cultivate healthy relationships with your colleagues, who plays a significant role in keeping your work environment stress-free. Treat them with humility and gratitude, become an observer, listener, and plan an informal dinner/meet-n-greet outside your office.
Never try to become a guy who know-it-all and do-it-all because in this situation, you work like crazy without getting recognition. Take projects where you can dedicate your energy and time, which is also beneficial to your company.
Don’t turn down a project on a whim. For example-
The project is challenging – if you have the skills, you can try to learn new skills and implement them quickly.
Different than your job description- if you have the skills to complete the projects, don’t turn down because it wasn’t part of your job description.
But say no because of the unrealistic deadline, too much on the plate, you lack the necessary skills. Explain your management about your current workload. Delegate your work and set realistic benchmarks and timeframe. But Say NO when needed. Don’t take projects to avoid a conversation with your boss.
Address The elephant in the room
After all the tactics, you still feel pressured and bullied at your workplace. It’s time to have to talk to your boss about his treatment. Explain the A-Z of his behavior with you- how negative attitude is disturbing your mental health. It’s difficult to open to someone who has a history of being unnecessarily rude to you. But at times, you need to spot the elephant in the room. You can’t let him ruin your day, your health, and your life.
If you don’t feel comfortable, ask your human resource team to join the conversation. Don’t make yourself look weak, but don’t forget to point out flaws in your boss’ leadership. If they fail to find a solution that works for you, I believe it’s time to leave your current employer and look out for an environment where you are valued.
Be Honest and Make a Choice
The foremost important thing is to ask yourself – is your job killing you? Do you want to see your boss tomorrow again? Are you being ridiculed in front of your co-workers? Is he putting your confidence down every time you speak in the meeting? Think harder.
So, the job that is killing your will to live is not the right job for you. Do you agree? You can’t hang in the toxic workplace with a control-freak boss looking for hope. I know, quitting a job is a tough decision. But don’t take this decision hastily. But if you know, it’s the time to bid goodbye, plan your options and make the right move. You deserve to be respected and treated well for your ideas, your work, and your experience.
Things aren’t perfect, and you can’t walk away from an opportunity without trying. You can decide to strike a balance and give your 100 percent to make things work for you and your boss. But you can’t pick your toxic job over your mental health. Don’t let a lousy history play with your confidence. Look out for new opportunity stored for you. Putting your health- physical and mental- will bring back strength in your life.