How to Avoid Taking Things Personally at Work

Taking things personally at work comes with several challenges. Whether this hinders your ability to move on to new projects, get along with coworkers, or interact with your boss, emotional investment may come with a price. We’re here to teach you to avoid takings things personally today!

  • Know Your Value: First things first, always understand your self-worth! Take time to appreciate yourself, your value, and your time.
  • Apply the 24 Hour Rule: If you find yourself becoming extra heated within your work environment, make sure to apply the “24-hour” rule before reacting to the situation. Doing so will allow you to calm down and often avoid altercations that aren’t worth it in the long run.
  • Take Time to Reflect: An easy way to evaluate your emotional investment is by taking time to reflect on your circumstance. Is your anger or irritation truly worthwhile? Are you fighting a one-sided battle? Doing so may allow you to take a necessary step back to avoid taking something too personally.
  • Evaluate Your Performance: It is easy to take promotions or rewards of others personally as it relates to your own performance. However, how do you measure up to others as an employee? This may be a perfect time to evaluate your performance and compare your work to others.
  • Be Honest and Expect Honesty: Although you may feel like telling a white lie or protecting the truth will avoid hurting others feelings, in the end, this is never the correct approach. Forming a culture based on honesty and openness will elevate a healthy personal involvement within your work environment.
  • Find an Outlet: If you’re someone who becomes emotionally attached to things easily, find an outlet to release your stress with. Whether this is working out, finding a new hobby, painting, or any activity, make sure to have a resource to blow off steam.
  • Set a Boundary: There is no reason to devote dozens of extra hours into a project just because of your emotional investment in its success. Set clear boundaries to create a healthy work-life balance and avoid over-commitment. Boundaries may include putting your work phone away after hours, a limit on how many times you check your email every day, or a limit on how long you allow yourself to stay at the office on any given night.
  • Focus on a Solution: Do not focus too much of your time on the problem at hand. Instead, re-focus your efforts towards finding a solution and moving on. If you become stuck on a problem, it is likely that no progress will be made. Remember, time goes on and new responsibilities will arise! One project will not determine your career.

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Looking for more? Read our article to learn how to set boundaries at work!