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    IRISHGIRL74   100,597
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Standing up for myself in the workplace . . . .how do I do it?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I've kinda started this blog in a sparkmail to one of my sparkbuddies, so I hope she understands if I'm repeating myself. I just need to vent.

I'm tired and frustrated. I really need to whine.

I started this job back in October. I have been questioning my decision to move over to the new job for a while now.

I guess my problem is that I need to learn how to stand up for myself. I can not let this job, or more specifically, this boss, make me feel bad about myself. I take everything personally. I'm the first to admit it. But, when I hear others making comments to me about this boss being a "jackass" or "the devil", I know it is not me. (And no, I do not express my feelings about my boss to others. They volunteer their opinions to me.)

I'm struggling with feelings about this job . . .it's making me feel bad and I'm so trying to stay away from my old comforts (eating junk, vegging out) and going for good things to feel better. Venting is one of them (thanks for listening!) I'm starting to make a work out routine to help too. That is, if I don't have to work late, unpaid, that is.

I feel like I need to stand up to my boss and tell him to stop being so mean and degrading (okay, I sound like a 10 year old, but that's what he is~he had my coworker in tears yesterday!)

But, I don't want to lose my job either. I'm never good at standing up for myself. It's one of the reasons the why I weigh so much. I've eaten so much to make myself feel better, but wound up abusing my body.

How do I stop feeling this way? How do I stand up for myself????? How do I not go home and cry and eat and taking it out on my dh?

I think to myself that I didn't go to school for this. I think I have to go back to school and get my masters.

Okay, now I am rambling. Thanks for listening and letting me get a bit of this off my chest. I know that here, no one knows my boss or will rat me out, lol.


Well, back to the job I really do like!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CAROL_ 7/29/2009 1:17AM

    And anytime it is necessary to go to HR, then do it, but as you go, don't be naieve about it; instead know that that's the beginning of the end of your job, whether it's sooner or later. Have your resume ready and up to date, and have job plan B and job plan C lined up and ready to move. Unless he's doing something that is causing the company a liability because they might be sued because it's illegal, you won't get any satisfaction from HR. But you can double darn guarantee it WILL be in YOUR employment file, even if he is doing something illegal. If you can't manage your relationship with him on your own, which is not your fault - you can't argue with a sick mind, right? - if you can't manage your relationship with him on your own, and have to go to HR, then that's the beginning of the end, so be proactive about it, not like an ostrich hoping "going to HR" will help anything, or solve anything, because the truth is 180 degrees in the other direction.

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CAROL_ 7/29/2009 1:08AM

    I've had horrible bosses before. I think, like me, you recognize there is some kind of unhealthy dynamic going on here that you are (unwillingly) participating in or being drawn into, or are susceptible to, however you want to put it and with whatever words you want to use.

I recommend counseling. You can't change the bosses but you can change whatever it is that is an open door in you that is making you susceptible to it. You can't change him, but you can change you. I'm glad approaching the boss has helped other people, but what I read about that sounded like a miracle to me that is not how it goes in 99% of cases, and it had disastrous results with me so I can't recommend it.

This is a frequent problem that counselors are familiar with and know how to help you sort through, get to the bottom of, provide coping techniques for, and stop the weird dynamic going on, at least on YOUR part. I found my reactions and responses were feeding into it; and when I "faked it til I make it" and tried to show no response at all, pretend the jerks weren't getting to me etc and have positive mental attitude, then I suffered internally, was passive agressive, stuffed my anger which led to depression, overate, etc. None of those things, going on inside of me, helped the job situation but only made it worse. You can't fake it. It's in the air around you, how you really feel, even if you try to hide it.

I didn't do anything wrong; NOTHING; had and still have excellent work ethic; but I was still able to work on the part of the equation that I was a factor in. Mine came from dysfunctional family with injustice and tyrannical parents.

When he has you in knots emotionally, stop, breathe, step back mentally, and ask yourself: what in my past does this remind me of, feel like, or is similar to?

If you don't have money for counseling go to University near you. They have to counsel for so many hours before they can graduate. The counseling is supervised so you get good advice. Call and ask for their psychological counseling dept, and make an appointment.

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L8AGAIN 7/23/2009 2:09PM

  What an awful situation to have to deal with. I would suggest talking to your boss first if you think it would get you anywhere. He needs to know, and I bet he doesn't, how he is coming across. Give him specifics of what he has done, how it made you feel, and give him alternate ways of conducting himself that would be more acceptable to you. We lost half of our staff once because of an abrasive supervisor. When I approached her after the last employee left, she was astounded and horrified that her behavior had cost our unit so much. She had no idea, was grateful I had spoken with her, called a meeting to apologize the remaining staff, and changed her behavior immediately. At the core, she was a good manager.

Your boss may not be a good manager and may be an SOB at heart. If this is the case, Brigith is right, talking to him will have no effect on his behavior and might even make your situation more difficult. If this is the case, go straight to HR or his boss. Explain the situation and be specific, giving examples of his less than professional behavior.

Either way you are taking a risk and must be ready to face negative repercussions from your taking action. Sounds like it might be worth the risk. No one person should be allowed to have such a detrimental effect on a work place. Whatever you do, stick to your guns and don't get pulled into badmouthing you boss with other employees. You don't want to be a contributor to a bad environment.

Good luck.

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INKAGOAL2012 7/23/2009 11:50AM

    I have been through 2 toxic workplaces. Follow your inner voice- deep down you know whether the workplace can be changed or not and that is your answer on what to do. Shedding a toxic work environment is like a great weight lifted from you and well worth the effort (which ever route you take) Good Luck!

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BRIGITH 7/23/2009 8:18AM

    I agree with JCCANN. Take it to the HR Department. Feeling like this about your workplace is not pleasant. You spend 8 hours a day there and while it is work, that doesn't mean it has to be dreaded.

I'm inclined to think that you standing up to him directly won't change anything, other than maybe make you feel like you've got something off your chest.

Unfortunately unpleasant people are a part of life. Learning to deal with them is a skill that I'm sure you will benefit from.



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JEFFCANN 7/22/2009 10:54PM

    I am sorry that you are frustrated and being victimized by your boss. It's not fair and totally unacceptable.

Yes, you can quit and find another job. You can also take a stand for yourself and the principle of treating people with respect.

If the company has an Human Resources [HR] department or person, I suggest you speak with that person. If you boss has a habit of verbal abuse, he probably won't change unless he has a reason to do so.

If you don't have an HR department, you should speak directly to your boss's boss. Most people who are good leaders will not tolerate one of their managers treating people with disrespect.

If the HR or boss's boss do not listen to your complaints and take appropriate action, then you are working in a toxic environment and you should move on and take this as a lesson learned.

Sometimes, the abusive person is not completely aware of their impact on other people. Your boss may have a terrible home life or a problem with addiction, guilt, shame, whatever. He's human just like the rest of us. The problem is that he is allowing his own negative feelings to drive the way he treats you and others.

He behavior is not acceptable under ANY circumstances and is actually could be illegal in most states under the laws of hostile work environment. Most companies have an HR policy against this type of behavior to prevent the owners of the company from being sued by mistreated [ex] employees.

Unfortunately, many people who act this way have serious issues in inside there head, mostly driven by their egos / self-talk...giving them reasons to justify hurting others.

I had to fire an employee last week who would not stop berating her coworkers and team members. She would SCREAM at people...We gave her a written warning and she stopped for a while. Then her behavior started again. When we fired her, no one was upset because her attitude was toxic and it negatively impacted everyone she worked with.

All she could say in the firing meeting was "I am shocked." It shows how little she understood that her words, actions, and attitude really hurt people. It was sad and shows that sometimes, despite our best efforts, some people have no clue.

Good luck and be strong!

Comment edited on: 7/22/2009 10:57:41 PM

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.DUSTY. 7/22/2009 9:55PM

    Maybe now's the time to start looking for a new job. Even if you have to take a cut in pay your health (weight loss), YOU, need to come first. This is no way to spend 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. Is it really worth it? If he's really that bad talking to him won't do any good.

If you work at a very large company can he be reported? Lodge a complaint?

Hang in there hon!
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ZOMMBIE1 7/22/2009 9:24PM

    I really don't have any answers for you but I wanted to give you a hug

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