This article talks about a few obvious signs and a few not so obvious signs that your job is toxic for you.
Nothing can act as an excuse to strangle your space and peace of mind and if you feel that sometimes one must sacrifice for future well-being then here’s a listing of what you can’t really compromise on:
YOU ARE CHOOSING YOUR CO-WORKERS OVER FRIENDS AND FAMILY
While it is a wonderful thing to be getting along well with your colleagues and other employees at work, you must find yourself balancing the time you spend with people from work and your loved ones.
There should be a clean boundary between your personal and professional life so that the yearend holiday would mean spending happy moments with family and friends instead of being at your desk in office during the day and sitting at the bar with your other colleagues as company at night.
If that is the idea of rewinding that comes to your head when you think of taking a break from work ALL THE TIME, then I assure you you’ve pushed yourself into the traps of a toxic workplace environment.
YOUR HAPPINESS DEPENDS SOLELY ON YOUR HAPPINESS AT WORK
You should have your priorities figured. Your job shouldn’t be the central controlling factor in your life, on which your absolute contentment will be based.
It is unreasonable to define your day and your mood depending on how your boss or your other peers at work treat you. Don’t base your happiness on the validation you get at work by your boss or other colleagues.
You might not get appreciated enough on certain days and on certain other days you might in fact be criticised but if you are letting a good day at work affect everything else in your life continuously then you are stuck in a toxic job, which you immediately need to quit.
YOU’RE NOT GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP
There’s always a valid reason as to why you aren’t getting sleep. It is usually because your mind is occupied with something that keeps on bothering you and prevents you from resting it.
You could constantly be stressing about all the work you have left to do and that there is a time constraint. Or you might have received validation at office for your a certain presentation or let’s say for contributing to a big positive stride towards profit making and other such stuff, so that you are afraid of being able to keep up to that level. It could also be something as simple as what your boss told you at work – either something negative or positive which bothers you all day long.
This isn’t a healthy behaviour. Your position, your respect, the responsibilities you have must all be on one side and the need for appropriate rest, rejuvenation and peace of mind must be on the other side which deserves way more priority than stress, don’t you think?
YOU KEEP THINKING ABOUT WORK EVEN OUTSIDE WORK
Sometimes it is alright to have work related issues come up even when you’re out on a vacation but that doesn’t mean that thoughts related to work will take precedence over enjoying time with the family on vacation.
If you find yourself not being able to avoid or ignore emails, phone calls and messages from your boss even when you’re out on a quiet vacation then it’s time to quit and move on.
Know what’s best for you. It isn’t right to submit yourself to your job completely. Not being able to balance between work and other things suggests that you are definitely subject to a toxic job.
C’mon, we all need time to ourselves. We all need ‘me’ time and don’t let anything at all stop you from finding out time to spend in pampering yourself at first, leave aside the family. If you can’t be happy yourself how are you ever going to impart happiness to your family?
YOU’RE DESK BECOMES MORE HOMEY THAN IT SHOULD
Getting too comfortable with your workspace, in the sense that you almost begin to set up a camp in your desk is a deadly sign of your work taking over your life.
What does one need in their office desks to function reasonably? –
A bottle of water, some snacks, office stationery and maybe an extra sweater, scarf and such for when you feel too cold under the air conditioner. If you find yourself carrying a whole lot of things to office and stacking them up on your desk, such us toiletry, makeup bags, full meals, novels, board games, then mind you your level of comfort with the desk has risen way higher than the level that defines healthy.
Your workspace can’t begin to feel like home. There is a difference between home and office and with any toxic job you’ll realise how the difference between the two will start to get blurred gradually.
YOUR JOB DOESN’T HAVE DEFINED DUTIES
You must know what you exactly are working as in a particular company. Every employer is paid for a specific job that they do at work. It’s a given
If you find yourself without defined duties and roles, taking care of the public relations on one hand and also looking after the sales and human resources department then you won’t be able to give your best performance by concentrating and focussing your attention on one specific kind of work.
Undefined duties will hence lead to dissatisfaction, insufficient acknowledgement and you not being paid for the extras you put your effort on. This is obviously toxic for you.
YOU HAVE A MICROMANAGING BOSS
You can’t work with your supervisor constantly looking over your shoulder to see what you are up to and how you’re managing what you are doing.
If your boss is constantly keeping an eye on you and trying to intervene into the simplest of the matters that they have put in your hand then the chances are that they trust you to the least. It is impossible to work with a supervisor who has no trust in you and is always interfering with your work.
In most cases this doesn’t prove your insufficiency, but rather the ineptitude of boss at being able to train you better. They probably aren’t content with the training they gave to you themselves. This is very unhealthy for you because it will prevent your growth and leave you feeling frustrated for never being able to perform independently without interference.
A JEALOUS BOSS
An unsupportive boss is somebody who doesn’t want to see you grow because they are simply insecure of their chair and they’re afraid that if they train you well then you might just outdo their position.
This kind of a boss can contribute to an extremely toxic job environment because your boss is constantly on the lookout for you to fail in order to feed their ego. Also the yearend performance review will be in their hands, which they can use to their advantage and deprive you of your deserved bonus and privileges.
If you find that there is no place for you to grow in a particular job then you must quit it, because a dead end job will make you feel dissatisfied and discontent with yourself throughout, messing with your mind.
This sort of an unsupportive attitude from your boss equals workplace bullying and this is highly toxic for your mental health.
YOU’RE FEELING LEFT OUT
If you find yourself feeling left out in your workplace then there is certainly something wrong with either your behaviour being misinterpreted by others or their purposeful exclusion of you from events and any get together.
If you find yourself victim to being left out without any fault of yours and even after having tried to ask to incorporate your presence in events and other gatherings, something which you may not have faced in any of your other jobs proves that there is nothing wrong with you but it is just that the particular work environment is toxic for you.
This kind of behaviour often arises out of jealousy and lack of familiarity. For instance you may be a new employee, but you within a short period of your stay in office have managed to gain appreciation from your boss, probably followed by a raised remuneration. This results in jealousy within the others who may have fallen behind in the competition.
CONSTANTLY BEING THREATENED WITH BEING FIRED
If someone is constantly threatening your job then this is abusive behaviour and you must not let yourself be subject to such insult day in and day out. It can challenge your self confidence. It is toxic for you and you must escape as fast as you can.
If you have experienced any of these red flags in your workspace then it’s time you quit the job that is filling you with toxicity. There are better jobs and better work environments out there. I promise you.