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How to Stop an Office Bully…and Why It’s Important You Do So

by / ⠀Career Advice / May 10, 2022
Are you a victim of office bullying? Is it bringing down your productivity? Read on to know exactly how and why you can stop an office bully.

If you’re a victim of an office bully, you don’t have to be alone. According to a recent study by WBI, almost 20% of Americans experience bullying in the workplace. And that doesn’t even include the countless number of people who don’t report it for fear of reprisal. Sadly, not many try to stop an office bully.

Bullying in the workplace can be extremely destructive, and it can have a huge impact on employees’ mental health.

In this article, we’ll provide you with tips on how to deal with an office bully and why it’s so important to do so.

Why is it important to stop an office bully?

There’s a common consensus among mental health researchers that workplace bullying can lead to mental health problems for the exposed person, including:

  • anxiety;
  • stress;
  • depression;
  • panic attacks; and
  • mood swings.

In some extreme cases, a severe form of bullying with no action taken against it can lead the victim to suicidal tendencies. Besides these serious issues, the victim can experience job dissatisfaction, low productivity, and even complete burnout.

So if you’re dealing with an office bully, you must take steps to stop it. If you don’t, you may deal with some serious health issues down the line.

3 Steps to Stop an Office Bully…and Ensure They Never Dare Again

1. Stay calm and positive.

A bully doesn’t like to be confronted. They like to intimidate and threaten. If you keep your calm and don’t engage with the bully, they may back down.

And if you remain positive and don’t let the bully win, they might just leave you alone. Be aware of your emotions and try to keep a level head. You can’t control what someone else does, but you can control your reaction to it.

Also, you don’t have to get into a physical altercation with them. But you should always try to keep yourself safe and protected.

You can respond appropriately by staying calm and not escalating the situation. If you do decide to escalate the situation, you need to make sure that you do so in a way that doesn’t physically hurt them but instead makes them think twice about their behavior the next time.

2. Do your research first.

When a bully makes fun of you or spreads rumors about you, you shouldn’t take matters into your own hands right away. Instead, you should try to find out as much information about the situation as you can.

The bully might be making up stories about you, or it might be true. Either way, the best way to handle it is to find out what’s going on before you react.

You need to gather solid evidence of the harassment or bullying either in the form of CCTV footage recording, making a video of them while they’re abusing you, or asking other coworkers if they’ll testify for you.

You can also use communication apps like Google Hangouts or Slack. These are great ways to talk to your coworkers, and they can also be used to record conversations. You can even use these tools to document what happens in meetings.

You don’t want the bully to get away by saying there is no proof of what you’re claiming they did. Because if this happens, they’ll be more careful and discreet the next time they try to harass you.

3. Seek help.

Once you have the evidence, it’s time to let your boss or someone else in your company know about it.

It’s very hard to say “I’m being bullied” to someone else when you’re dealing with an issue that seems so personal. It’s also easy to blame yourself or think that you’ve done something wrong.

But the truth is, you’re not in control of what happens to you in the workplace. You don’t get to decide who your boss is, and you can’t choose which coworkers you work with. You can only control your own actions. So if you want to keep your mental peace and sanity and avoid getting fired, it’s essential to stop an office bully before it goes too far.

If the bully is targeting your performance, then you should talk to your manager and ask for help. If it’s something more serious, such as bullying in the form of verbal abuse or physical violence, then you should tell your HR department. Show them all the evidence and they’ll be able to help you figure out how to deal with the situation.

The right step to get help is to make a formal complaint. HR will have forms for you to fill out and send to them. They’ll investigate the situation and make sure that you’re protected in the future.

Don’t be afraid to speak up. Even if you think it’s only affecting you, it’s still illegal, and you deserve to be treated fairly.

Put a stop to the bullying and start enjoying your professional life.

Bullying in the workplace is not only demoralizing and exhausting, but it can have lasting effects on your career. By following the steps above, you can put an end to the bullying and ensure that you’re never a victim again.

Stay calm and positive, gather the proof, and get help from an expert if necessary.

This is the formula to protect yourself from an office bully and ensure a healthy work environment for everyone.

About The Author

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Taha Khan is a professional content writer by trade. He is a business administration graduate with a focus and interest in marketing and entrepreneurship. Khan has been working as a content writer for several years and has collaborated with 100+ businesses on their content marketing projects. When not writing, he is probably reading – mostly going through psychology and philosophy books. And when Khan is not reading, he is gaming on his PC – another hobby mostly associated with introverts.

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