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Dealing With The Boss From Hell

Most of us have had one of "these" at some points in our lives: the Boss/Manager/Supervisor from Hell. These are the type of immediate superiors who won't take "NO" for an answer, who may pass THEIR jobs on to us, call while we're having dinner with the family, or even make sure we don't enjoy our vacations. If you have one of these right now, maybe we could help.

But before we go on, let us take a realistic look at why the Filipino career-oriented individual can't seem to escape from the bosses straight out of the bowels of Hades.

For one, "NO" is easier thought of than actually said in the Filipino culture. The reason why we simply get harassed and bullied for most of our careers is that we honestly don't know how to say NO. We can't tell our bosses to just stop.right.there. We just enable them to harass us, pile on more work on us, and drive us to a point of frustration that ultimately burns us out of our careers, no matter how much we may have loved it at the start. Then we think that solutions will come by moving to another company. Then we encounter another direct superior who treats us the same way. We still can't say NO. And so we perpetuate a similar cycle.

If you've noticed by now, the solution is almost as simple as just getting it over and done with: Just say NO.

  • No more work when I've gone home, please.
  • No work when I'm on vacation, please.
  • No work when I'm having quality time with my loved ones, please.

Though it's easier said or thought of than done, you do have to learn to be selfish in order to preserve your sanity. Unless you guard your time, your personal space, you'll let that abusive superior walk all over you.

Here are some practical tips which you can use in order to guard your personal time and space:

1. Keep two separate phones: one for work, and one for your personal use. Don't give your personal number to your boss or workmates. Not even for your work friends. This way, you can easily turn it off and be incommunicado when needed.

2. Don't check your work email manically. Yes, you have to retrain yourself to not be overly concerned with work. There's a fine line between being responsible and career-related obsessive-compulsiveness.

3. When you're on break, day off or vacation, DON'T EVER DO ANYTHING WORK-RELATED. One reason why most of us are all burned out is that we tend to bring work with us, even on vacations.

To be fair, before you go on break or even before you go home for the day, make it a point to wrap up your work. That way, there would be no need for your bosses to call you. Also, you are giving them a reason to respect your personal time and space: because you've delivered what you needed to, anyway. So, here's to you!

For more tips on setting proper boundaries, here is a great resource:

Book Cover

Have a great weekend!

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