I can’t stand up for myself at work and I hate myself for it!

Home Welcome to the ADDitude Forums For Adults Emotions & Shame I can’t stand up for myself at work and I hate myself for it!

This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  SimonaSto 3 weeks, 6 days ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #128203

    Honey18
    Participant

    I am a woman, mid 40’s with a good job that I enjoy. However I feel like a child at work at times. I have no self-confidence around senior
    management, I get so nervous around them and my words come out all jumbled and I feel they
    must think I’m stupid and have poor communication skills.
    I know I am not stupid, I have a university degree and am a quick learner but I just find I work so much better on my own, in my own little zone. I have no problem communicating with my husband, kids or colleagues apart from the senior ones.
    My role is developing and my manager wants me to raise my profile but I just don’t know how to do this when I find certain people hard to talk to.

    I can be very sensitive too. Today something happened at work and a senior manager spoke to me in a terribly arrogant and rude manner. I didn’t know what to say or do, my words all
    came out-in a jumble and he made me look stupid. I was so upset, I went to the toilet and cried
    and cried. If that had been my colleague she would not have stood for being spoken to like yhay by anyone, in fact I doubt he would have spoken to her like that in the first place! She oozes confidence that says ‘don’t talk to me like that’!
    How do you be like that? I don’t want to be treated like a child, patronised or spoken down to or be afraid to speak or voice my opinions. I am a wife and mother and have travelled
    the world on my own for goodness sake! I should be able to do this but i can’t seem to.

    Can anyone empathise or offer advice please?

  • #128237

    LuannKelly1980
    Participant

    Hello Honey18, yes, I was the same way in my most of my jobs. It was very humiliating to say the least. I have 3 college degrees including Master’s in Sports Medicine. I have been bullied so many times at work I lost count. Every job led to adrenal burnout. I finally had a mental breakdown and am on SSDI, and refinish furniture and I love it. You are right about working by yourself, for yourself! It is freeing, and I can actually say no to people, and don’t answer to anyone. It helped me to get counseling and study bullying. When you are a kind hearted soul, you can tend to attract bullies who are really jealous of you. One boss whistled at me like a dog in front of clients! I ran to the ladies room and cried. Another new boss treated me like a kindergartener even though I was the top salesperson at the jewelry store! And on it went. So I understand totally! It seemed like when I pushed back to stick up for myself, the bullying got worse. Do I would just get a new job. Unfortunately, many narcissists land in senior management positions, and for people like us, it us very harmful to our psyche.

  • #128649

    SimonaSto
    Participant

    Oh, dear I can totally see this. I have been struggling with this too ON and OFF. What I found that helped the jobs that I had someone who ‘got my back’ was very easy. Meaning I was very confident, when I felt I had someone of certain level of authority be on my side. I also learned from my husband who doesn’t take any ‘crap’ from anyone. I learned that the very first standing up for yourself are the hardest. Once you realize that nothing bad happened it’ll be easier. Try going to that person who ‘attacked’ you and calmly talk to him/her about it. Let them know that you are well educated (you may throw that here and there from time to time for no reason as people tend to forget specially if you are kinder person) and the behavior they showed against you is inappropriate and not expected. I understand it might be difficult, but realize nobody likes confrontations. Not even your boss or mean coworker and if you say something they will do it less and less or avoid it at all.
    try to find someone who will back you up. (but don’t be needy about it ….you know, nobody likes needy, whiny people 🙂 )
    Best of luck to you

    PS Don’t take mistakes harshly, everybody does them. I know how we can get hard on our selves.

    Oh and also I found out that upbeat music helps me to boost my confidence.

    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 6 days ago by  SimonaSto.
    • This reply was modified 3 weeks, 6 days ago by  SimonaSto.

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.