Walking into your workplace every day knowing that you have to deal with a toxic coworker yet again is tough. Some coworkers can be toxic enough to turn your working expression into a complete nightmare. So what must you do in such a case? Well, quitting your job altogether will never be a wise thing to do. No person should be given that kind of importance. The only way out is to learn to deal with the toxicity in your own way.
These tips shall help you manage your toxic coworker in a healthy way and save your productivity from getting affected.
Set and define boundaries
When a certain kind of behaviour irks or makes you uncomfortable, it’s best to start keeping a distance. A toxic coworker can often be an enemy in disguise. Anything done or said that makes you feel negative must alert you. You can limit your interaction with such a person. Avoid hanging out with them. If you find them indulging in office politics, gossip and making one of your colleagues a target, refuse to partake in it. Set your boundaries clear so that both you and your toxic coworker know what is acceptable and unacceptable for you.
Avoid cribbing and complaining
Yes, venting is often said to be a healthy thing to do, but when you choose to crib about your toxic coworker, you are choosing to develop a negative perception of them. This is just going to affect, rather damage, the way you work with them, thus damaging your quality of work. When you complain about them to your other coworkers or your friends and family, you make a choice to remain in a negative state of mind. It will fetch you no benefits but just keep your mood spoiled. Instead, surround yourself with those colleagues that bring out the good in you and foster your growth.
Have control over what you must let and let not bother you
The work you do is so much more important than toxic worker behaviour that’s completely irrelevant. Only you have the power to let something affect you. Only you have that kind of control over your mind. No one can make you feel bad about yourself without your permission. If you choose to ignore or let go of what coworkers are doing, you will be able to focus on your work more clearly.
Call them out on unethical or immoral behaviour
Ignoring your colleague’s toxic behaviour doesn’t mean you should be submissive or passive. Sometimes they may act in ways that directly affect your quality of work, tarnish your reputation, or cause damage to your professional relationships at work. At such times, confronting them is the best thing to do. Call them out by saying, “I understand you’ve been telling people that I am not performing well at work,” or “I heard you tell our colleagues that I wasn’t fit for the project assigned to me by my senior. Is it true?” When you confront, you are not just standing up for yourself but also sending across a message that you won’t accept such behaviour towards you. If even after confronting, the issue stands unresolved, you can always approach your seniors or the grievance redressal department of your office. However, don’t complain about petty and negligible issues.
At times, when things go out of hand, issues can take a mental toll. If you feel you need help to deal with it at a personal level, you can seek a therapist’s help. You can also seek professional help when a toxic coworker’s behaviour impairs your ability to work effectively.
These suggested ways might get a little difficult to implement initially, but it will help you in the long run. They will come to your rescue without spoiling your cordial relationship with anyone in the office. They will help you restore the calm you need at your workplace to function effectively.