by Curnesia Bogans, MFT

Let’s face it, most of our day is spent working.

For some of us, it’s with an office full of people. In some instances, we spend more time in an office with our coworkers than we do with our own families. Having positive work relationships can be vital to the progression of your day.

Who wouldn’t enjoy a good laugh?

Who wouldn’t mind a good story to help the day go by a bit faster? I know I would. But what do you do when those conversations and interactions are not so pleasant? What do you do when there seems to be more negative conversation than you are willing to hear? I want to give you some tips on how to survive the gossiping coworker.

Here are five tips to help you survive the work gossiper:

1.Recognize what you like and dislike about your conversations. Is it really the content of the information or is it the person delivering the information?
2. Know your relationship with the gossiper. If this is someone you consider a friend, have the conversation with them and let them know that something has changed in the way that they’re speaking. If you aren’t so close with the gossiper, distance yourself from the conversations. Although work chat and conversations help the work days go by faster, you are there to do a job. You are not required to engage in negative conversation.
3. Be consistent. You can’t, on one hand, decide to separate yourself from the conversation but, on the other hand, engage in gossip when the person you aren’t particularly fond of is the subject. Be consistent. If you removed yourself from the conversation they were having about your friend, Marvin, then you should excuse yourself from the conversation that’s shared about Lisa with the attitude. You want to share the same message for both. And that message is, “I am not interested.”
4. Do not feel bad or guilty for your thoughts, feelings, and decisions. You are doing what works best for you and your level of comfort while on the job. Boundaries are important, and it is okay to set them within your personal as well as your business environments. Toxicity can be somewhat contagious. Even through our interactions, the conversations we have with people can begin to affect how we interact with others. So, protect your peace of mind as well as your authenticity by removing yourself from people and conversations that are not reflective of who you are. It is okay to give yourself permission to do so.
5. Spend more time engaging in conversation with other people that share the same views of gossip as you. It can be tough, and it can also seem lonely to be one of few people who do not wish to participate in the office gossip. But if you have others, it can not only be beneficial to you both, but it can also be rewarding to your time management and productivity. If you do not have others that share your similar views about work gossip, spend your time listening to something that will encourage and motivate you to a positive mindset. It can be through podcasts, sermons, motivational speeches, audible books, or music; the list of can go on forever. Although there may not be many that share your views within the office, that does not mean you are alone or judgmental for creating boundaries and establishing the type of person you are.
Curnesia Bogans, MFT I would consider myself to be an “out of the box” therapist, who’s creativity is limitless. Therapy should not be boring. I utilize experiential therapy, which involves the use of the client as well as external sources such as music, themes and role playing to name a few. I believe in creating a therapuetic experience that is tailor-made for you and your journey toward your goals. I also believe in the exploration of thoughts and emotions that may not always be as obvious as others.
Learn more about Curnesia and how she can help you and your family, Here

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