[photo credit: DeliriumBlue @ Flickr]
My posting has already started to drop off. Why? My 9 – 5 job has become shaky over the past couple of weeks. My love of this job that I’ve held for the past two years has taken a sharp decline over the past 6 months. The details of this are the subject of a separate post. Suffice it to say that I have begun to look at job boards. I really don’t want to have to go on the job market. I really, really, don’t want to have to go back on the job market. I was last on the market during the recession, and it was brutal. Even more than that, my debt keeps me shackled.
I’ve started to think about bad job fits like any other bad relationship. I’ve come to believe that the worst job relationships can be as emotionally abusive as any other relationship.
Are you in an abusive relationship with your job? See if any of these apply to you.
1. You are subject to regular criticism and judgement; from informal comments to formal reviews. Ever endured a 360 review? No? Look it up and consider yourself lucky. They can be things of terror.
2. You have lost your self-confidence and self-esteem. You are now a shell of the person you used to be. You question every decision you make and second guess yourself constantly. This extends into your personal life.
3. You start to believe the critical comments made about you. You begin to think that you deserve the treatment you are receiving.
4. Your opinions and suggestions are not respected and are ignored.
5. You live under a myriad of rules; too many to keep track of. You fear doing anything at all because you might be breaking a rule somewhere, which would result in bad consequences.
6. You are watched. The metaphorical panopticon lives. You feel as though you are always being observed. Your physical whereabouts and online communications are monitored.
7. You are bullied, insulted, or called names.
8. You must get permission to do anything.
9. All of your time must be occupied with it. Forget about spending time with family and friends. You’ve even started dreaming about work. You are made to feel guilty for wanting work-life balance.
10. You get an occasional gift, bonus, award to entice you to stay around a little longer.
Why don’t more people leave abusive jobs? The short answer is, for some of the same reasons many don’t leave an abusive marriage. A few reasons are:
- 1. Lack of financial independence.
- 2. Self-doubt and fear that there are no better options out there.
- 3. Peer pressure or fear of losing the perks and high status that are now enjoyed.
If you feel that you are in an abusive job, start making plans to get out. Eliminate as much debt as possible and put some money aside in an emergency fund. Start looking for new work and be sure to ask more of the right questions, this time around.
As for me, I’m starting to think that my days at this job are numbered. If I last through the end of the year, I will be happy for the sake of my debt. In the meantime, I now have another part-time job of scanning the job boards to add on top of my other three jobs.