Working in a toxic environment; here are 7 signs not to ignore
Before getting back into the freelance world, I decided to try a 9-5 job in a physical office in my town. I don’t know what got into my head for leaving freelancing in the first place, but I thought maybe an office job would do me good to socialize and get myself into some new challenges, but goddamn, I was so wrong.
Not only that, I did not manage to associate with anyone, and not only did I not get the challenge I expected, but I got myself into some serious mental health issues that I am still currently working on.
A toxic work environment can affect your mental health so that you don’t care anymore about the bills you have to pay or the other things you need that money for. For a whole month, before I finally decided to call it quits, I was overthinking it over and over again to leave or not. It took me a month of overthinking, constant stress, a few breakdowns until one day I couldn’t take it anymore.
Anyhow, enough about me and my past because I am in a better place now, and since you are here reading my blog, you are not feeling your best at your workplace, and this is why I am giving you seven apparent signs that your mental health is being “abused” at this moment.
1. A toxic workplace may have poor management.
Starting big with this one, someone has to yell at that manager and tell them to stop acting like they own your life. Sometimes bad bosses come as a product of their boss, and so it forms a chain where the employees get stuck like in a spider web.
This millennial hierarchy of “Bad Bosses Club” contributes to the overall workplace being utterly toxic. These bad bosses will have a lack of communication, but when it comes to raising the voice, oh well, look, they know how to talk.
Bad bosses don a variety of disguises. This is a checklist of their toxic behaviors; take notes so you can identify yours.
We have the:
- Always in a bad mood one,
- The one who doesn’t even know what you do
- The careless one,
- The last-minute
- The narcissist one
2. Employee Turnover Is High In A Toxic Workplace
I mean, can you blame them? The reasons are evident if the employees have left, got fired; disorganization, poor leadership, etc.
If you have a word with the employees who left, especially those who got fired, you will have another POV of your colleagues or bosses.
3. A toxic workplace lacks a work-life balance.
There is life outside of your door company, and I believe your manager knows that, right, RIGHT?!
Yes, yes, we know some cases where your phone will ring and your email inbox will be complete, but that cannot happen every mid-Sunday.
You should take your earned vacation days without feeling guilty, set your boundaries right, and if it still doesn’t work out, time to pack your bags.
4. Enclaves, marginalization, and gossipy behaviors may exist in a toxic workplace.
Eh, it reminds me of high school. Enclavement mostly happens with the old employees. They stick altogether, leaving the new employees in the corner, just like the high school cafeteria. They stick together to gossip around and laugh out loud to make you feel bad and left out.
But who cares? I like to call it “sheep behavior.” I know it can be sooo frustrating; I know it gives you high school flashbacks, but they are non-professional, and believe me, you don’t want to be part of the “sheep club.”
5. Unmotivated coworkers are a red flag too.
“But how does this affect me?”, oh dear, believe me, it does.
A workplace with unmotivated coworkers equals more work on your shoulders.
Unmotivated people tend to pass their discouragement to you, and so the vibes on your workplace will be so low that they will have you yawning every minute.
Sadly, unless you’re in a position of authority, this issue is a symptom of far more profound problems, and you’re unlikely to learn or develop in this environment.
6. A toxic workplace causes burnout.
Burnout is accurate, and many of us have at least for once experienced it. Burnout is indeed a sure symptom of a toxic workplace—or at the very least, a workplace that doesn’t “fit” you.
There are different signs of burnout. Do any of these ring a bell within you?
Frenetic burnout: Employees that put a lot of effort into their work in the hopes of getting an excellent result suffer from frenetic burnout. The frenzied worker does not see favorable results after a long period of effort and dedication.
Under-challenged burnout: When a person feels caught in a routine and uninspiring workplace, executing a task that does not bring job satisfaction, they experience it. This leads to a general downturn in their emotions.
Worn-out burnout: Worn-out burnout happens when people give up after a span in which their workplace environment is constantly a source of high pressure or provides little benefits.
7. A toxic workplace will give you bad vibes.
When your gut feeling is triggering bad vibes from a place or a person, it usually is correct, and you should listen to it. If your work environment constantly makes you feel anxious and draws your energy, then your gut is SCREAMING at you, telling you to leave that place.
Listen to it.
A toxic workplace will have you feeling anxious, depressed, and sad even after work hours.
I want you to know and remember one thing; a job does not determine your worth. No one should ever make you doubt your self-esteem; no one is worth your peace; never risk it for anyone nor any workplace.
I have been in your shoes for six months, and it was like a living hell, but it does get better. I know you have bills to pay at the end of the month, I know you have groceries to buy, a family to feed, kids to take to school, and many other reasons that are holding you back, but I promise you will find better. Let go of toxic people, let go of poisonous situations that are harming your peace because, one way or another, all these grudges will be reflected on your loved ones.
When I called it quits at my old job, I felt the burnout, and it took me two weeks to regain my energy. As I said, it does get better; it’s not your fault, and it’s not your responsibility to fit in everywhere; some people and some places don’t click anymore.
Another important thing I must mention is; take your time before jumping from one job to another. Take some time to cope with the whole toxic situation, and so when you start the job hunt again, you will feel relieved and ready for a fresh start.
You got this, don’t let anyone and any situation bring you down; you are capable of more incredible things. You might get fired many times, and maybe working a 9-5 is not meant for you. Perhaps you are destined to be “your own boss.” Maybe these are signs that you should be your own boss and give entrepreneurship a shot. It is not easy, but hey, neither is dealing with toxic bosses and coworkers.