Updated: Apr 29
Most of us spend nearly one-third of our day at work on any given working day, yet 40% of Australians feel lonely at work. This is an alarming statistic don't you think!
With this and other startling facts about workplace anxiety, stress and dissatisfaction, I thought it imperative to focus the second part of this series on Redesigning Relationships, specifically for work colleagues.
When we spend one-third of our life at work, the relationships we have there, play an integral part to our overall well-being and happiness.
We have likely all suffered workplace dissatisfaction in some way. It is no fun going to a job for eight hours a day if you hate it. We are then prone to taking home the anger and frustration of workplace unhappiness.
However, dissatisfaction in the workplace doesn't always begin in the workplace. It is important to remember this. It frequently invites itself, like a burst bubble and shows up completely unannounced. So why is this so?
Sometimes if our home life is difficult, our workplace becomes our refuge and vice versa. When neither provides any kind of refuge, we then become a ticking time bomb. The likely explosion appears as the usual suspects, stress, anxiety, depression, and all the other health issues that come along for the ride.
So you might be thinking, how can I possibly redesign my relationships with work colleagues? Why would I even want to?
If we want more supportive, engaged and productive workplaces, we need to foster support, engagement and productivity right! This seems like a no brainer, but the fact of the matter is that this simply is not happening on mass in workplaces.
Statistics report close to 80% of employees are unhappy in their job, and alarmingly the vast majority report this is due to the relationship with their boss, go figure!
Why are we not doing anything about addressing the underlying issues of poor relationship skills in the workplace? We know that when people are happy in their job, they make more effort, take greater care, and are overall significantly more productive.
So, how can you improve your workplace relationships, so that you and your work colleagues can express and enjoy happiness at work?
To understand others, first, we must understand ourselves. The relationship we have with others is simply a reflection of the relationship we have with ourselves. Understanding this is sometimes, a very bitter pill to swallow. But once swallowed, it can potentially open the flood gates of transformation.
When we approach others with a clear understanding of ourselves, we bring compassion, kindness and consideration. These are crucial qualities in a supportive and engaged workforce.
As humans engaging in a whole host of relationships, which are frequently complex, and can feel relentless, we desperately need to focus on the one thing we have absolute control over. That is how we respond.
Poor relationship management from childhood to adulthood, like every trigger starts with an imprint. Then throughout life, we build a story around the original event. We are then regularly triggered again and again. The story gets bigger, and so does the response, until one day the trigger is so great it causes an explosion. This is the most significant response to the original event. But wait, when this happens sometimes we just run away, hide or pretend, as though nothing happened. Fast forward to today, and we get triggered again, but this time our response seems uncalled for because we were triggered by something appearing to be small and insignificant.
Is this sounding familiar? It should be because we all have played the victim and the attacker in the cycle of repeat patterns. However, The best part is that we have the power to change everything, to create better relationships with our work colleagues.
There is limitless potential for a better way. To understand this, we first need to understand the dynamics at play, the role we currently play, and the role we could play. Then we need to develop a better road map moving forward.
Are you struggling with the dynamics of your workplace relationships? Would you like to redesign your workplace relationships?
You can learn to have the power to shift the dynamics in your workplace by making the shift in how you respond.
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