Bullying is any type of intimidating behaviour that leaves another person fearful, such as the threat of physical violence. It can also be a veiled threat of job loss or another negative consequence. Blocking someone from obtaining something important to them, or making them believe they’ll lose something that means a lot to them, are also forms of bullying.
So how would you know that you are being bullied? Here are few subtle signs that you should look out for :
- Someone constantly demeans you or says snide remarks about you.
- Someone is constantly yelling at your or criticising you.
- Someone deliberately isolated you in social or work situations.
- Someone is constantly making helpful “suggestions” and laying guilt trips if you don’t take them.
Bullies engage in persistently aggressive and/or unreasonable behaviour against a person. That means you’re singled out and the person is being more than just annoying or rude. Bullies are intentionally trying to harm you and your ability to do you work.
If someone’s sniping is a minor annoyance, let it be. If, however, you’re losing sleep, you hate going to work, or you’re feeling depressed or unworthy because of the way someone’s treating you, then you need to do something.
- Write it down. Document everything.
- Seek help if necessary. If you’re being bullied at work, talk to an HR representative.
- If you confront the bully, be assertive, not aggressive. Talk facts, not feelings. This is where the documentation comes in.
- If you’re a bystander, step in.
- Get out of the situation. Adults have the benefit of removing themselves from the situation.