How to deal with workplace bullying

  • event 04-03-2024
  • schedule 12:00
  • timer 1 minuut

Workplace bullying can happen everywhere. It is can take various forms such as persistent verbal criticism, personal attacks, humiliation, coercion, belittling, intimidation, lying or gaslighting, taking credit for other people's work, destructive criticism, embarrassing in public, emotionally manipulating, unfair treatment, creating unrealistic or unattainable expectations and exclusion from social or work processes.

Bullying damages the mental health of the employee. It reduces self-esteem and self-efficacy while increasing anxiety, depression, mood changes, panic attacks, shame, helplessness and frustrations. It also creates health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart problems, sleeping problems, tensed muscles, aches, changes in appetite and ulcers. Functioning levels, effectivity, motivation and productivity drop, as the frequency of absenteeism may raise.

If you are being bullied at work, there are strategies that you can use to cope.

  1. Set Boundaries: be assertive in your communication. Use "I" statements and professional verbal and nonverbal communication style. Tell the bully what was done that you perceive as bullying, the impact that it has on you and that is it unacceptable. Define the way you wish to be treated and what you will not tolerate. Request it to stop and add consequences should they ignore you.
  2. Document the details including the time and exactly what happens. Present your documentation to the manager and/ or human resources should it continue. Think if you need legal counsel or assistance from the union.
  3. Care for Yourself: Seek out emotional- social support, practice relaxation strategies to relieve stress, practice self-care behaviors to improve your mental health and seek the help of a psychologist if needed.