Even if you love what you do for a living and find your career very rewarding, a toxic workplace can end up making your job unbearable. Increased stress, damage to your self-esteem, burnout and depression are all signs you might be stuck in a toxic work environment. A dysfunctional workplace can even start to affect your home and personal life.
What is a Toxic Environment?
A toxic environment is any setting that causes damage to your well-being. It can be any situation or place that leads to your mental, emotional, or even physical harm. Specifically, a job that is detrimental to your health and happiness, when it shouldn’t be otherwise, is probably a toxic workplace.
Signs You’re in a Toxic Workplace
If you’re reading this article, you probably already are feeling the effects of a dysfunctional workplace. Some of the things that might be getting to you is the lack of communication, which leads to confusion and uncertainty. Poor communication at work starts with bad leadership. When a team doesn’t have good leadership, there is a lack of direction and motivation.
There might be even more serious issues at your workplace, such as verbal, mental, and physical abuse. Bullying employees through excessively harsh criticism or attacks on a person for personal reasons happens more often than you might think.
Sexual harassment, which is any unwelcome sexual advances, is all too common in the workplace and creates an incredibly toxic environment. Fear of being ridiculed or even losing your job can stop you from reporting this type of behavior. A Los Angeles sexual harassment lawyer can help you, so you don’t have to live with the burdon any longer.
How a Toxic Work Environment Can Hurt You
Mental and emotional stressors can cause harmful effects on your physical health. You start to feel your energy levels drop, your mood gets down, and eventually you’re in a cycle that leads to depression and feeling of anxiety.
These feelings don’t just happen between the hours of 9 to 5. You end up taking them home with you and your homelife and personal relationships start to suffer. Studies show that people with depression and anxiety report a lack of interest in intimacy with their partner, which can cause even more feelings of unhappiness and worthlessness.
The harmful effects on your mental health from a toxic work environment don’t just affect you, they will eventually cause problems with your other relationships, including partners, family, and friends. Poor mental health will cause your physical health to suffer. If you’re in a toxic workplace, you owe it to yourself to get help and be happy at your job.
How to Deal with a Toxic Workplace
The fastest way to get out of a toxic environment is to leave it, however if the environment is a source of your income and livelihood that might not be an option. The next step is to recognize and address the issue that is causing the toxicity. Communicating your concerns with the help of the human resources (HR) department can get things moving in the right direction.
Sometimes, just talking about the problem can be helpful to your mental health. Addressing issues will make you feel more confident and give you a sense of control. Don’t get down on yourself if problems aren’t fixed overnight. Workplace cultures take time to heal and you have resources available to help you in the meantime.