Detox your workmates

Oct 16 2008 by Print This Article

Sometimes it seems like working with the people you spend eight hours every day with is killing you. Maybe your boss is making you angry or a co-worker is annoying you to the point of violence.

Now this isn't good. So if you're beginning to feel overwhelmed by the toxic personalities around you and need some help to deal with them, this is the book for you.

Working with You is Killing Me Ė Freeing Yourself from Emotional Traps at Work was published a couple of years back, but its strategies for "unhooking" youself from conflict at work are essentially timeless.

According to authors Katherine Crowley and Kathi Elster, employees need to learn how to "unhook." They discuss "unhooking" physically which means actually stepping away from a stressful situation for a while. Then there's "unhooking mentally" where an employee carries on an internal dialogue to "talk themselves down off the ledge."

At the same time, employees can "unhook verbally" which means expressing yourself via words to that co-worker who is annoying you so much. Of course, the authors say you need to take the "high road" when doing this so as not to get yourself into trouble. You can also "unhook using a business tool" which the authors define as "any standard procedure or written document used in a business setting." This can be job descriptions or rules for handling situations written in employee handbooks or anything documented.

By keeping these ideas in mind and learning to separate yourself from the situation, you may be able to find solutions to the things that are sapping the life out of you. Given the tough economic times, changing jobs may not be the answer you need, so learning other ways of dealing with the stress may be the best way to go.