6 Signs You're Being Bullied At Work

Not yet deemed illegal, bullying is a common practice in the workplace. Because of this legal status, bullies persist in making life on the job miserable for victims. Studies have shown that millions of workers suffer through bullying behavior. And the perpetrator gets away with it, unless he or she use bullying tactics against a protected class such as race. Recognizing signs of bullying is the first step in overcoming it. Here are five signs that you’re being bullied:

  1. Do you vomit before your workday? Do your legs buckle as you leave your house? Perhaps you tremble at the thought of returning to work. Dread of the workplace may masquerade as a massive headache. Blood pressure may skyrocket. Pains may seize your chest. Physical illness manifest in those that are bullied. Don’t ignore these symptoms. These symptoms represent a warning to seek medical attention. Consider whether or not your physical illness relates to whether or not you’re being bullied.

  2. Are you screwing up at work? Meaning, does your supervisor or coworkers interfere with your job productivity? If you find yourself slacking off at work, take a long look at the reasons.

  3. Do you flinch or wince whenever a supervisor or coworker speak to you? Do your supervisor and coworkers berate you? Accosting you with inflammatory words provides power to the bully. In fact, he or she thrives on making you miserable. Scathing comments may leave you emotionally spent if not seething with rage. The bullying has transformed your work area into a hostile work environment. And it’s very difficult to work in such an environment.

  4. Does your supervisor or coworker invade your physical space? Are you comfortable hearing their breathing? Smelling their mouthwash? Does your supervisor or coworker tower over you while you are sitting at your desk? This reeks of intimidation. Perhaps that supervisor or coworker is impeding your work progress by just staring at you. Recognize the discomfort you feel and legitimize it by speaking to the discomfort. Meaning, admit to yourself that you feel uncomfortable in the presence of bullies.

  5. Are your coworkers ganging up on you? Your coworkers may gang up on you through subtle signals. For instance, whenever you enter a room, your coworkers scatter. Worse, they barely talk with you. Your coworkers are following the bully’s actions. Isolating you represents just another weapon in a bully’s arsenal.

  6. Are you being excluded from team meetings? Have you been uninvited to a team lunch? This may be considered bullying.

Studies show that bullying is common in most workplaces. Bullying can start out so subtle that the victim fails to recognize it. By the time the victim realizes he or she is being bullied, it’s too late! The perpetrators operate with impunity. Management seem to protect bullies even though bullies may cost a company thousands of dollars in sick time or turnover. Have you been bullied?