Has the phrase “I hate working” become your mantra every time you have a chance to talk to your coworkers? Is exuding negativity your daily MO, to the point that you foist your discontent on others?
If you’re starting to get the feeling that you’re not very well liked at the office, it might be because of that negativity, or perhaps it’s due to another reason that you haven’t identified. In any case, if you want to get back in your office mates’ good graces, you can start by making sure that you’re not guilty of any of the following behaviors.
4 Reasons Why Your Coworkers Could Secretly Hate You:
You’re Constantly Ranting About Life and Work
It’s fairly common -and normal- to rant every now and then, especially when you have a lame job that you can’t quit. But when it becomes the main thing you do, when all you say is “I hate working” (especially during breaks and lunchtime), you might start to wear down your work friends with your negative vibes.
This includes disparaging others, complaining about work all the time, constantly grumbling about your boss, ranting about your personal problems or life in general, and having agitated, polarizing discussions about politics or similar issues.
This should be common sense, but not everyone seems to know this. The thing is, you might feel better upon having these discussions and even unburdened after communicating your likes and dislikes. However, in reality, you might just be offloading your burdens and negativity on your work friends or whoever has to listen to you. This will leave them drained, and with an eventual desire to avoid you.
Nobody likes being surrounded by negative Nancies, especially if it becomes a common thing. So look deeply and ask yourself: am I this person in my office? If so, think twice about beginning your next rant.
In contrast, others will gravitate towards you if you are a positive influence and make them see the bright side of things or feel good about themselves.
You Need to Always Have Everything Your Way
Do you have a coworker that, when it’s time to leave for lunch, delays the entire group’s departure because he/she has to send an e-mail or make a last-minute phone call? And it just so happens that the situation repeats itself every day? Yup, just right when you’re starving or when everyone is waiting by the elevator.
What about those folks that always have to make a bathroom stop as everyone is about to head out of the building, thereby delaying the entire group and eliminating any chance of beating the lunch crowd? Not to mention that it eats up a small chunk of your lunch break!
Some people are a bit more extreme, and have no qualms about imposing their likes and dislikes on their workmates, such as by demanding to only go to the restaurants they choose. Others walk incredibly slowly to the place and, to top it off, get really picky at the establishment. Or what about the folks who constantly send their food back to the kitchen at almost every restaurant they go to, and make the waiter miserable?
Another (mild) form of having it your way and being inconsiderate of others is when you completely impinge on someone else’s time by camping out at their office and chatting incessantly, causing the person to fall behind in his/her work. We might all be guilty of this one!
If you notice that your conversation partner stops making eye contact with you, starts typing, or starts looking at the computer screen, that might be your cue to cut the discussion short. The person’s body language is key, so watch out for it.
Are you this person in your office?!?
You Bombard Them With Work-Related Questions
If you ambush people with work-related questions while they’re taking a break (such as when they’re having lunch) they might soon start to run away from you. One thing is to pick your coworkers’ brains every now and then, but using every opportunity you have to squeeze them for advice might cause them to stop asking you out to lunch.
It probably has nothing to do with you specifically. The thing is that a lot of people like a mental break at lunchtime, but can’t really disconnect if their work friends force them to be “on” at every minute.
You Fish for Information About Their Strategies
Unless you have a solid and established relationship with your coworkers, most people don’t appreciate the feeling of being questioned under a lamp. While you may be new at a place and eager to learn the ropes, others might take it the wrong way if you start interrogating them left and right about their work plans, tips, and tricks. Indeed, some folks are quite reserved and unwilling to share their “hard-learned” wisdom.
This is typical of highly competitive workplaces, like law firms, advertising agencies, accounting firms, or any kind of internship situation (a.k.a “Hunger Games” scenario).
So, if you find yourself being a bit too inquisitive and notice that people hesitate to respond to you, or give you brief and un-detailed answers, you might want to take a step back and wait until the subject of your questioning opens up first. That way, it’ll look like the natural progression of the conversation, and not you being nosey. 😉
I hope that when you’re at work, negative thoughts like “why does everyone hate me?” or “I hate working” don’t cross your mind too often! If it happens, don’t worry! We’re human after all, and one of the reasons we get paid to do our job is because it’s tedious and nobody would do it for free. Most probably, people don’t “hate” you – they might just be, well, a bit annoyed by you!
That doesn’t mean you have to be miserable when you’re there. You can use the opportunity to make work friends and try to find motivation in every way you can, such as stuffing your drawers with cool snacks that’ll make you rule the cubicle scene! 😉
But either way, try to make the best of it and find ways to improve your daily experience. Oh! And self-examine your attitude to see if you’re making other people’s days worse than they have to be.
That’s my take!