How to Take Care of Yourself in a Toxic Work Environment

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A workplace can be a pretty mixed bag of attitudes, personalities, quirks, and strategies.

Not everybody is in business to make friends, serve the community, and enrich our culture and economy. And even some of those who are have a funny way of going about it.

Colleagues may be negative, over-zealous, or devious because they’re only interested in advancing their own cause. Or they may just have got into bad habits or going through their own stuff.

Sometimes folk with money problems or personal problems can behave antisocially because they’re so unhappy and worried – but if it’s someone you work with (including your boss) and it consistently makes your day worse, you shouldn’t have to put up with it if there’s no obvious way to help.

Sometimes folk with money problems or personal problems can behave antisocially because they’re so unhappy and worried – but if it’s someone you work with (including your boss) and it consistently makes your day worse, you shouldn’t have to put up with it if there’s no obvious way to help.

In fact, when you meet a wall of negativity at work, whatever the cause of it, if it makes you dread turning up each day and starts to make you mentally and/or physically ill, then it’s what is known as a ‘toxic work environment.’

Because of the damage it can do to your mind, body, and soul, it’s important to arrest the process as quickly as possible. The simplest solution is to quit, but that isn’t always desirable or possible. So instead, work extra hard on shoring-up your own mental defences. Be kind to yourself, and establish routines outside of work that will make you feel in control of your own destiny. Tick off small wins like making the bed or going for a walk, and be careful not to let your self-care – including diet and exercise – slide.

At work, quietly start to distance yourself from your negative colleagues. Identify those positive forces in the workplace, the ones who give you strength and support, and redouble your efforts to look out for them in return.

In these ways, you can start to regain control over a dire situation. For more ideas of how to stay on top of things, study this new visual guide to the toxic work environment from resume.io.

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