The term toxic co-worker is a bit overused, and most people use it for people with whom they just can’t come to an agreement with and its real meaning is lost. But there is a difference, you may have a colleague that you may not like to work with, and there are people whose very existence and presence around you make you super annoyed and miserable. Toxic co-workers try dominating you under various situations, bring negative energy to drain you of your positive energy.
What are toxic coworkers?
Toxic coworkers represent colleagues at work that methodically and selfishly, acting as cancer in the workplace and actively disrupting the working peace. Usually, toxic coworkers: discriminate, gossip, create clans, constantly complaining, and blamed the other.
Are you currently struggling in a situation where your co-worker belittles you in Infront of your colleagues and boss? Or constantly sabotages your work or deprives you of the information required to complete your job. They often spread rumors and lies about you when you have trusted them; they involve trash-talking behind your back. A tip for now, if you know such a person, avoid sharing details about personal stuff.
On a bad day, they might even try gaslighting you, making you think the work you do is worthless, even when everyone else is supportive and assures you that you know how to do your job and you’re good at it. And if the work you do is worthless, you wouldn’t be where you are currently.
To find out how to deal with bullying in the office, here is a piece of advice from the experts who have helped a lot of people in dealing with bullying at work.
In the first step, you need to figure out the type of toxic coworker?
Then, it would help if you analyzed situations and signs that you are Dealing With a Toxic Person:
In the next stage, that kind of people will not be your friends and need to realize that:
How to Deal with Toxic Coworkers?
To deal with toxic coworkers, you need to focus on controlling yourself, have a direct conversation with toxic coworkers, setting boundaries with toxic coworkers, and talk to your human resources department (or any third side). Finally, don’t stay in a toxic workplace; change your job or position.
Below are tips on how to respond to toxic coworkers:
The first piece of advice is putting a check on how much personal stuff you wish to put out among your colleagues. It doesn’t necessarily mean stopping yourself from sharing stuff with your co-workers; it is about controlling the image you wish to project on others.
Before you share any information, reflect upon how much information you wish to reveal about yourself to your colleagues. This suggestion helps you protect yourself from any disinformation that may spread and people’s perception of your capabilities.
Dealing with Gaslighting:
Gaslighting is purposely/unconsciously psychologically changing your perception of things. It is done most of the time purposely, but sometimes someone might do it unconsciously. If there is any suspicion that someone might be doing this to you, the best way to recover from any damage that has already been done is to look for a third party that will act as an arbitrator.
Be Vigilant for Any Signs:
Experts say that if a person that identifies as an extrovert finds themselves withdrawing from situations, then your boundary might have been breached. Then it would help if you tried to analyze how a relationship with a particular colleague might impact your emotions and how it is changing you personally. If you are introverted and find yourself reaching out and mixing with an unusual number of people, then it is also a sign of how your boundaries have been breached significantly.
Dealing with Crossed Lines:
How to deal in a situation where someone has crossed a line? or has undermined you somehow? Do you call it out then and there or when you are more comfortable? Experts suggest a casual and straightforward way of dealing with this situation, such as going to them directly and telling them how things between you and colleague are not working out and how you can address the problem. However, if your co-worker isn’t mature enough, then you can try using a third party.
Including a Third Party:
Inviting a third party to solve your problems may not be your first impulse as it is unnerving. But asking a third party like a human resource manager or your supervisor to step in is an effective method of finding a way out of your situation and setting accountability for all the parties involved. It will be crucial if the current situation is not documented anywhere.
It is better to get someone involved in the situation so that the relationship between you and your colleague becomes dysfunctional. It is necessary to make sure that your colleague doesn’t feel alarmed. To ensure this, experts suggest opening the conversation by emphasizing that getting someone else involved will benefit both. Please ask someone who doesn’t have a conflict of interest or supervises neither of you.
Making Your Peace With It:
It might seem scary to make the first step to talk to a co-worker you find it difficult to work with. Don’t worry about it too much; it may take several attempts to develop a connection, resolve the issue, and get out of the situation. You have to be sure you don’t have to let a toxic co-worker gain control over you and make you miserable.