No workplace is perfect. Even if you absolutely love your job or are endlessly inspired by the company for which you work, every employer can do better (if you are the employer, you can always do better, too!).
Simply put: There's always room for improvement. There may be toxic workplace rules, toxic coworkers, toxic hiring patterns, toxic standards of a work-life balance, toxic expectations, toxic micro-management, toxic discrimination against women or other marginalized groups, etc.
While no toxic behavior is OK, many of us just do the best we can with what we have in the situations in which we happen to find ourselves. We learn how to deal with those toxic coworkers and how to report to that toxic boss. And some of us even report toxic behavior to try to create the change we want to see in our places of work.
But everyone should still set and respect their own boundaries in order to protect themselves from toxicity in the workplace. The No. 1 sign that your workplace is so toxic that you should seriously consider quitting?
Your toxic workplace could be more than just irritating or exhausting. Sure, if you have to work with toxic people or navigate a toxic culture all day every day, it can be mentally taxing. But when you really hate your job, it could affect you both mentally and physically. In fact, hating your job could cause you headaches and muscle pain, weaken your immune system, cause you to gain weight, affect your cycle and libido, and make you lose sleep, which can lead to a whole host of even more health problems.
These are problems that you can't just leave at the office. They follow you home long after the workday is over, and they impact your life outside of work, too. And, if you're already feeling sick all the time, experiencing aches and pains, having trouble remembering things, experiencing decision fatigue, or noticing changes to your appetite, the stress of your job might have started affecting you more than you thought.
While quitting is easier said than done — especially if you don't already have another job lined up — it may be time to at least weigh the pros and cons of sticking around. The worse your stress becomes, the more likely you are to burn out anyway. And who would want that to happen? Quitting could actually save you in the long run, even if it doesn't seem ideal in the short-term.
No, we're not suggesting that you up and leave every time a company doesn't operate how you'd prefer. But we are suggesting that you take a serious look in the mirror if your health starts deteriorating because of your job.
Do you agree? Have you ever walked away from a toxic workplace? If so, leave a comment about what your struggle was, if it affected your health and why you ultimately decided to quit. I'd love to hear from you!
AnnaMarie Houlis is a multimedia journalist and an adventure aficionado with a keen cultural curiosity and an affinity for solo travel. She's an editor by day and a travel blogger at HerReport.org by night.
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