- Practice the Golden Rule. Respect others, look for the best in people, speak kindly, and bite your tongue when you're about to gossip about a coworker. Really listen to colleagues. Genuine kindness will help you build stronger connections and give your longevity a boost.
- Outsmart the office jerk. Every watercooler's got one: the complainer who always sees the dark side. To protect yourself, consider changing your break time to avoid the verbal toxin. And think upbeat thoughts after a run-in. Being optimistic can boost immunity.
- Find an ally. If there's rampant incivility at work, talk with your boss or have a chat with human resources (especially if you're a target). Business-psychology experts emphasize that real change only comes from the top.
- Find meaning in what you do. Work's not easy these days, but renewing your commitment to your job can help you shrug off the ill effects of incivility (and make you nicer, too). Even if you have to dig, find satisfaction and purpose in all that you do -- even if that means finding a passion or retraining for a job.
A Answers (1)
Michael Roizen, MD, Internal Medicine, answeredIf you're stuck in a toxic work environment, try these steps to help you rise above the ugliness and bring back respect: