How to Tell if You are the Source of Your Problems at Work

problems at workWe don’t live in a perfect world, and unfortunately, we have no control over certain people and situations we encounter on a day to day basis.  This fact can be acutely evident in the workplace.  In any job, there are bound to be hiccups along the way.  People will disappoint at times, and we will not always get the end results we expect from hard work we put in.  But if your problems at work seem to be constant and present in every aspect of your career, you may find yourself wondering if everything around you is really this hard to deal with?  Or is there something you are doing, and can take action to change, that is causing you to have so many problems at work?  To answer that question, here are some signs that you may be the source of the problems you are having at work:

1)  Everyone seems to be incompetent

If everyone you deal with at work, whether it’s coworkers, clients or vendors, seems to be ignorant and incapable, it is worth asking yourself if these people are all really that much more incompetent than you are?  It’s more likely that the problems you think these people are causing are actually the result of poor communication skills that you are using at work.  You may need to invest more time in training, set up extra meetings to clarify instructions, or be more direct about results you are looking for and deadlines you are trying to meet.

2)  You feel like an outsider

If you find that you are having problems fitting in at work, but you don’t see other employees you work with having the same issue, the root cause may be in your behavior.  Maybe you complain too much, or tend to judge others, therefore causing people to keep their distance.  Or maybe you are just simply too closed off, and need to make more of an effort to connect with coworkers, instead of always expecting them to go out of their way to make you feel welcome.

3)  You are overwhelmed with work

If an insurmountable workload seems to be a constant problem at work, there’s a good chance you are doing something wrong.   Possible solutions include making your superiors aware of your workload, delegating more work, or learning to say no.  Often, people imagine others are putting pressure on them, when in fact they are putting it on themselves.

4)  You think the world is against you

Do you tend to blame every promotion you don’t get or customer you lose on the fact that people are against you due to various factors such as your gender, differing political views or because you are from Vermont?  It’s easy to avoid solving a problem at work by attributing it to a variable we cannot control.  But it’s worth taking a closer look to see if there are improvements you can make to increase your career success.

5)  You are constantly bullied

While there’s nothing that justifies bullying, if you can’t change it, it could make your life a whole lot easier if you can pinpoint what is making you an easy target.  Get some suggestions from people you trust on how to deal with the people that are harassing you.  Consider self-development and confidence-boosting tactics that can make this less of a problem for you at work.    It’s also possible that you aren’t being bullied at all; you are just taking constructive criticism the wrong way.  Your superiors could be simply trying to help you, and it’s likely you are not the only one receiving this level of feedback.

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Jessica Cody

Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.

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