Editor’s note: Caroline Parsons is an attorney from Queensland, Australia. Today she points out the big similarity between toxic bosses and toxic spouses. Learn more about Caroline Parsons on the Lovefraud Announcements page or in her author profile.
By Caroline Parsons, Esq.
A “toxic” boss can be described in broad terms as being self-centred, controlling (or micro-managing), manipulative and threatened by initiative. Toxic workplaces are generally characterised by in-fighting, mistrust, lack of communication and high turnover. Mis-managers enjoy pitting employees against one another, making empty promises, stealing the limelight and blaming poor performance on their employees.
A “toxic” romantic partner reliably has “selfish” at the top of their list of character traits. They enjoy controlling their partner’s actions, denying them financial autonomy, making derogatory slurs and preventing them from connecting with their family and friends. Toxic households are unsafe, unpredictable and unhealthy. Family members are treated poorly and punished if they attempt to stand up to the abuser or leave.
Sometimes it’s also hard to leave a toxic work environment, not only because it provides financial security, but because a toxic boss convinces the worker that the fault is theirs and they are unlikely to succeed anywhere else. A really effective mis-manager can make an employee believe that this is not abuse, but a by-product of a robust working environment.
That’s the key commonality between a toxic boss and a toxic spouse. Their effectiveness lies in chipping away at the target’s self-esteem until he or she feels there is no choice but to stay. Convinced that the problems in the relationship are their own, the target then works harder and becomes more compliant, to prove their worth to the abuser.
Are you in a professional or romantic relationship where you feel, on a daily basis, confused, disheartened, undervalued or actively undermined? If so, your best option, from a career and personal perspective, is to leave. You deserve better, even if toxic bosses and toxic spouses have led you to believe otherwise.
According to Dr Steve Maraboli, an expert in the fields of business, peak performance and human behavior, “Poisonous relationships can alter our perception. You can spend many years thinking you’re worthless. But you’re not worthless. You’re under appreciated.”
This article was originally printed at Solo-Legal.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.