You know that feeling when you look around and wonder, “Is it just me? What’s happening here?!”
We can’t help but wonder:
- If I shifted something, maybe it would change. Maybe I’d be okay if I adjusted my expectations or set better boundaries or [fill in the blank].
- What exactly is going on here? Is this one person? Is it the whole place?
- Is anyone else suffering the way I am? Am I the only one?
Look, setting clear boundaries is important and healthy, and sometimes, it’s just time to hit the reset button. Growth experiences are great, and sometimes it’s not something that you need to take on.
Take inventory of your situation:
- What’s the flow of information and resources like? Are you included when it comes to important data or support?
- Are respect and civility the norm?
- Do you have a route available to you that allows you to object and/or make requests, one that won’t cost you something vital politically (either overtly or covertly)?
- Would you use the words “bully,” “belittle,” “hyper critical,” or “abusive” to describe the tone of your workplace?
- What happens when conflict surfaces?
- Is blame a central point of discussion?
- Is credit given where it’s due?
- What’s the distribution of power like at your work (both the published and the informal)? Where do you fall in the power structure?
Here’s the true test of whether you’re in a toxic workplace: how do you feel when you’re there? You can trust yourself. You deserve better, and you can create something better.
With my clients, we address any or all of these pieces of workplace toxicity:
- Creation of what’s next (both short- and long-term solutions)
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