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Finding yourself trapped in a toxic work environment can be a stressful experience. You cannot even fake a smile as you need to struggle and survive when working under negative atmosphere at work. As stifling as it might be, leaving the job is not an option as well, given that you might be working with certain contract system that makes you unable to leave any time or you find it difficult to land a new job in today’s tough economic conditions. At the end of the day, you have no choice but to brace yourself and stay in the company until you can find better solution .

Maintaining professionalism in the toxic workplace is a challenge. Cheri Torres, a business leadership coach and an author, says that employees cannot work at their best in a distasteful workplace, while their mental health and wellbeing is at risk as well. So how to minimise such risk and stay productive in a toxic work environment?

Here are some tips to help you cope with a stressful life at the workplace:

01 Set boundaries

Limit yourself when interacting with the toxic people or environment around you. You might not realise it but if you still find yourself hanging around in an environment with negative vibes, eventually you will turn to be one of them as the environment you are living in can shape your personality and behaviour.

Of course, you don’t want to change who you truly are, let alone becoming one of those toxic employees. In this case, you should surround yourself with positive energy and if possible, stay far away from or limit your interaction with negative environment as well as the people who create it.

02 Don’t expect people to be nice

You cannot control what people say or do to you. You can, however, control how you react to such action. You should find a way out of that situation by accepting people’s behaviour around you. The sooner you accept that, then the better you can adapt and know where you should stand within the setting. This realisation will help empower you to improve your wellbeing at work. The point is, if you cannot control people, then learn how to control yourself because anger cannot solve anything, it will only give you regret.

03 Self-talk to yourself

Have you ever tried to talk to yourself?

Well, many people already did this and the impact is amazing. Self-talk can be either good or bad for your mental health because the source of this talk is yourself. Doing a self-talk can increase your mental well-being as you can try to spend few hours motivating yourself and let the positive attitudes come in your way. You can also take a walk around the office space and observe the good things by yourself; this will regain the positive energy in your mind. Besides, this simple practice can affect your daily life and can be your mood booster at work.

04 Reach out for help

Another thing you can do when stuck in a toxic work environment is to reach out for help. You might feel embarrassed to admit that but by asking for other’s opinion, you can find another way out from someone else’s perspective. It is good to talk to trusted colleague or friends even though they aren’t working in the same company as you. You can either get solutions for your problem or at least get someone to listen to your problems.

05 Take it as a lesson  

See your current condition as a part of learning experience. If you cannot deal with the toxic environment anymore, you can take it as a good learning experience. People say “the struggle you are in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow”, meaning that personal strength can be built from difficult situations. Pay close attention to the situation, for instance you can learn from the bad management that you never want to do twice or your leader’s behaviour that you don’t want to imitate when you become a leader someday. Take as much necessary as the lesson you can and utilise it to achieve your own self-growth.

Next read: Got an Interview? Get Rid of These 9 Behaviours

Initially, when you join the company, you were feeling excited and raring to go. You get along well with everyone in the office and obstacles coming your way are challenges that inspire you. After months or even years within the company, you might be facing tight deadlines, insensitive co-workers or perfectionist supervisors among many things that continuously test our patience.

Next, you find yourself waking up in the morning, mourning for the fact that you have to go to work and the complaints towards your job increases. Also, if you can’t even recall when was the last you felt the exuberant feeling you had like before, it might be time for you to consider moving on from this company.

All of us know that bad days are common as we all face stressful times at work, so how do we tell if we should move or stay on? Here are some tell-tale signs:

  1.      You feel bored and monotonous.

A job role can get boring and monotonous. For example, at times when you are given a lot of tasks, and you are not feeling the ‘challenge.’ When that happens, your productivity could significantly decrease as procrastination sets in. Learning opportunities and future career growth come together with the projects we are tasked with, so if you aren’t feeling it, then perhaps, you may want to consider looking for a new job.

  1.      You feel underappreciated.

Underappreciation by employers can discourage employees from a further progression of performance. Thus, completing a project with expectations met or even hitting above average, recognition usually comes next. But if your employer does not show any form of proper appreciation towards the efforts you put in, then perhaps it is time to look for a new environment where employees are more valued by the employers.

  1.      You feel the lack of passion.

Not all jobs will turn out as you had expected them to be initially. The lack of passion for a job comes when you aren’t enjoying what you are handling or when you have more to offer, but the job doesn’t give the window of opportunities to perform or when the learning growth has become stagnant. Rather than staying there, perhaps it is time to discover your true desire. Don’t let yourself be stucked.

  1.      You feel not supported.

When you have the potential to offer more to the company and yet, there are no advancement opportunities or career growth. Even after speaking to your supervisor doesn’t seem to make any improvements to your career life. It might not be only them blocking the path, as it could also be due to the role you are in, does not have the capacity to let you shine or offer you more areas to tap your capabilities.

Also, when there is no support from your supervisors or team members, your expectations of the job could not be fulfilled, the feeling of dissatisfaction and no sense of belonging could eventually increase with time.

  1.      You feel stressful & tired all the time.

When you are always racing against the clock and staying later and later in office to complete your tasks or meeting approaching deadlines, exhaustion can happen. At the same time, you realise that the time spent at work is way more than the time you spend with yourself, friends or family. That’s when you start to feel weary and unmotivated. These could eventually decrease your performance at work which further leads on to the inability to progress further in your career.

  1.      You feel unhappy at work.

Keeping our mental and emotional being healthy is important. If you are happy with what you are doing and satisfied with your current role, naturally you will be encouraged to pursue further. But, if you are feeling unhappy whenever you think about work, dreading to go to the office, and especially if you are experiencing verbal abuse or bullying, it is time to look for a new role in a healthier work environment.

  1.      You feel unfitted with the company culture.

When you do not share the same visions, values and goals as the company, you should not even accept the job offer in the first place! But what if you are aligned with the employers initially and along the road, changes happen, and you find that you no longer share the same ideas anymore? It is a sign for you to start looking for a new job then!

 

If you are experiencing signs like the above, it is time to reconsider your career and look for opportunities that suits you better. Visit http://jobiness.com/sg/jobs!

Next read: The Effects Job Dissatisfaction Does To Your Health

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A workplace with appropriate salary, inspiring leaders & colleagues and clear progression opportunities is a thought that most graduates would envision.  However, the reality may not resonate with what you have envisioned depending on your expectations. In the current highly competitive business landscape, finding the perfect job seems like a distant goal particularly for fresh graduates.

Job dissatisfaction arises when your expectations differ greatly from the ‘real’ world environment that you are employed in. Harsh as it may be but it is as common as it can be for most fresh graduates thus igniting the spark of job dissatisfaction. If not kept in check, job dissatisfaction may embed negative mindsets that will impede our professional & character development on the long haul.

So how do we manage job dissatisfaction and overcome it? Before we move to discuss this in-depth, refresh the following quote by Richelle Mead.

‘For every bad thing in life, there are more good things to tip the balance’.

#1 Understanding your discontent

More often than not, we succumb to our discontent when our workplace doesn’t ‘agree’ with us. That extra workload, that overtime, your superior whom you deem unqualified to lead, that colleague whom habitually hands-over her work to you to complete as part of your learning & training journey, that promised job exposure which did not materialise and most commonly the salary that may not justify putting up with all the above. Added together, seems like a job you can better do without with.

Before we come to a verdict, take a step back and read the quote in your mind again.

#2 Making the best out of what you got

If it isn’t perfect, it may still be good. Take a step back. Rationalise your discontent. There may be underlying factors that may have brought about your predicament.

-    Are my problems solvable

-    Who can solve my problems

-    Can all of my problems be solved

-    If not all, can I adapt

In all employment, there are always learning opportunities such as technical skills, processes, soft skills, people management skills etc. For every difficult situation you have dealt with and moved on facing the next, you have subconsciously proved that you are competent to solve or handle the problem you were presented with. If handled well, these valuable situations have placed you in a better stead to handle bigger and more critical situations as you progress to take on leadership roles in your future employment.

Adaptability is also key to managing your discontent. Learn to adapt to your work environment, your superiors, your co-workers etc. Our ability to adapt enables us to achieve a wider spectrum of perspective on the circumstances that we are facing thus allowing us to review our problems or issues. And sometimes, our issues & problems may not seem as severe that brought about dissatisfaction.

#3 Moving on

Do not harp and dwell on your dissatisfaction. Move on with your newly acquired experience, apply that experience as you encounter new challenges and make your job better and hopefully more fulfilling.

There will come a time where the next move comes calling for the betterment of your career. Consider your options & circumstances. A change of job should never be a rash decision. Never take it for granted that the perfect job will be made. It is up to us to carve out that perfect job and never be satisfied, for we all deserve better.

Next read: The Effects of Job Dissatisfaction to Your Health

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Are you really happy and satisfied with your job right now? With the new technological advances and innovations, the job market is highly competitive now. Thus, landing a dream job is not an easy task.

Think about the higher living standards and perhaps needs to maintain individual lifestyles or commitments, these causes most people to work in jobs that are able to sustain their needs and wants. Even so, a percentage of these people are just working in a job not even related to their qualifications (due to the challenging job market).

If you are dragging yourself to work every day, you are possibly facing job dissatisfaction. There are quite a number of reasons for such behaviour; it could be a lack of passion for the job you are currently in or unideal workplace environment (over-demanding superiors, irrational workload or the inability to mix well with your peers.) When such cases happen, some might resign while there are others who will stay just simply because of financial reasons.

An important message this article wants to get across is, ‘For a person to function their daily tasks well, a healthy state of mind should be present’.

Let’s take a look at how job dissatisfaction can gradually affect your overall well-being.

  1. Additional Stress

When you are feeling unhappy with the job you are in, it is likely that no matter the tasks you are given to do, you will feel stressed or a lack of interest. When that happens, procrastination usually takes place. No employers will tolerate such procrastination and lack of productivity.

That will result in you rushing tasks under stressful conditions and delivering subpar work to your superiors. As such, your self-esteem will decrease due to the inability to meet expectations and perhaps, even the high possibility of ruining your career.

That could lead to burnout.

  1. Insomnia

When you are stressed out, you might not be able to sleep at night with those excessive worrying and unhappiness. So, insomnia occurs, and you are not able to get the sufficient needs to allow your body to recover.

When you are not able to let your body rest and recover, your immune system will gradually weaken, and you will be more prone to catching diseases.

  1. Depression

Lastly, when you allow the issues to continue wearing you down, it can unfold into a depression state where you are no longer able to face the day-to-day positively but bury yourself in pessimism.

Depression changes the body’s system and drives brain messengers to function abnormally.

If you are experiencing the above few symptoms, it is vital you get help immediately, with professionals or family members for their support. Then, re-evaluate yourself and set your goals, realistically. Life challenges are there to push you to greater heights, not pull you down to the river bottom.

Next read: Being an Overconfident Person at Work