In the workplace, sometimes we have great days and sometimes we are subjected to those not so great days. The way we feel and the quality of our work life can be affected by the way we are treated by our boss.
There is nothing worse than sitting at your office minding your own business and going about your work only to be thrown off guard by a comment by your boss. Sometimes it can be a question on the status of a project or simply what you are working on.
Feelings and Reactions
Firstly you need to decide how you want to feel and react. Ultimately you want to feel good about yourself at work so you need to craft your responses carefully and keep your emotions in check too. Remember that no matter your boss will always think they are right and this can affect you negatively. The two p’s: Preparation People! If you are prepared, you will feel much more confident and less anxious. And as difficult as it may be to start a small riot of chatter about the subject by the coffee machine, don’t. Keep it on the low-down, there is nothing more unprofessional than airing grievances around the workplace.
Observation is a key strategy to learn in this scenario. Work is a place of habit so often you should be able to anticipate reactions and behaviour from your boss. By doing this you can emulate the language and manner that your boss uses. Before talking with your boss, set your posture, know what you are going to say and speak in a respectful way that makes you feel good. Always have a strategy! This will help you to articulate yourself without stumbling and stuttering over words.
Document your meetings and communications with your boss and keep them readily accessible to bring up when your boss may enquire. This means keeping all email communications, texts and taking minutes in meetings. You should start to keep a ‘special file’ that you can access in the future. A narcissistic boss will not be receptive to blame or talking back so when you are able to reveal factual evidence you can eliminate the emotional connection. Be on guard at all times. They will blame you or others for their mistakes and failures as they will never take blame themselves.
No negative feelings here
Stay positive. If you have an awareness of your boss’s personality and behaviour you will feel more comfortable and in control. Narcissistic bosses can affect the whole workplace and in most cases the feelings and thoughts of others. Listen and take in what others say but do not involve yourself or respond in a negative manner as this can not only get back to your boss, but also make it harder for you to cope at work and fuel negative feelings and sadness. Your coping mechanisms are at their best when you have a positive mindset- this be prove extremely difficult in your work environment but can help you get through the days.
You may feel that you don’t have any nice words to say about your boss, however, you need to learn to work in peace. Acknowledging their heavy workload and their achievements will make them feel appreciated and proud leaving them in a good mood thus making it easier to cope. Narcissists like to hear how good they are and will actually believe everything you tell them. If complimenting is a little too much for you just make sure that your ill feelings do not come through in your tone and remain neutral in your dealings.
Hang in there guys! What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Although, eventually if you don’t see any future career progression or job satisfaction it may be time to reassess!
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