You spend a huge portion of your life at your job, and if that environment is hostile it can have an extreme impact on your mental and physical health.
Whether the cause of stress is an overbearing boss, a bullying coworker, low wages, unstable hours or unsafe working conditions – the stress adds up, especially if you are in a workplace where you do not have a union to back you up.
We have some tips with how to deal with a frustrating workplace.
1. Talk with other coworkers
Chances are if you are finding your work environment stressful, some of your fellow coworkers are as well. Find a fellow coworker you feel comfortable with to talk to about your concerns and try to find solutions. Talking about it will make you feel better. If you are unionized and have a shop steward, make sure you are communicating your issues with them to find a way to improve the situation.
2. Document Everything
Keep track of the issues you are dealing with at work, whether that is keeping angry emails or writing down when you felt bullied or unsafe. This will help you if you ever need to provide evidence, or recount events later.
3. Remember it isn’t your fault.
When you are dealing with stress in the workplace, you may want to jump to the conclusion that you are doing something wrong. Everyone makes mistakes on the job at one time or another, but feeling unsafe, uncomfortable or overstressed at work is not something that is acceptable. Putting the blame on yourself only makes things worse.
4. Find ways outside of work to de-stress
Take the time to participate in activities that help you relieve stress. For many people that is exercise – take 30 minutes before or after work to go for a walk or run. Meditate, read a book or whatever it is that allows you to relax.
5. Consider Unionizing
The benefit of being backed by a union in your workplace is that you have someone to look out for you. If your boss is bullying you or your hours are totally unreasonable, a union can step in to make sure your rights as a worker are protected.