You get to pick only a few things in life: spouse, friends, and career, if you're lucky. However, not all decisions are yours to make, like the profession who shows up his face on your unluckiest day or the most unsettling people who sit on the chairs in front of you.
Moving out of college and taking the first few steps to office is one of the transition that every single one of us makes with lots of expectations and hopes. However, things hardly change. Classroom transforms into office chambers and classmates become your colleagues. Those not-so-easy to gel with folks are also not far from reach, sitting in the next cubicle. An annoying officemate quickly escalates from a minor inconvenience to the bane of your existence, deteriorating your already demanding job into a survival war. Such people make you dread going to work, struggle to stay productive, or even land on the office floor once the excitement fizzles out.
Should this be the end of your dream career?
Fortunately, even in the presence of the most annoying person in the world one can have more control over their work experience than we might think. Here is a quick and easy reference guide to help you deal with annoyances at work, especially when they stem from a particular person you cannot avoid:
1. Speak up
A vast majority of annoying people don't even realize that their habits might annoy those around them. By just stating, "I can't focus when you're clicking your pen like that," you might be able to single-handedly resolve most of your complaints in a single exchange. The point is to be calm, specific and brief; you don't want it to turn into a long, drawn-out conversation, but a way to bring a solution to a problem. Here are some great tips and tricks for having difficult conversations at work if you need a little guidance before diving in.
2. Know them well
"In the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him. I think it's impossible to really understand somebody, what they want, what they believe, and not love them the way they love themselves. And then, in that very moment when I love them... I destroy them. -" - Orson Scott Card
By opening yourself up to your coworker and putting effort into building a friendship, you'll begin to notice the things you like about them, which can overshadow the things you dislike about them or at least put them in better perspective. Even more importantly, you'll gain an understanding of what drives their actions and behaviors, which can help you be more accepting and forgiving.
3. Be mindful
Only you can control your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors – not the jerk who cut you off on your way to work this morning and not your annoying coworker. Mindfulness can help you recognize and redirect your frustration before it changes the course of your day. Here are a few tips:
Adjust your expectations; expectations that are too high result in frustration and disappointment
Reframe your thoughts from, "Why am I here?" to, "I'm here because I choose to be here. I'm happy because I choose to be happy."
Take a deep breath when you begin to feel frustrated; reground yourself by placing your feet on the floor and pressing the ground beneath them.
Get your mind off of the annoyance by diving into a challenging, meaningful project or task.
What not to do
Whatever you do, DON'T takes these routes:
If you want to advance in the organization, don't ever ask to be moved/transferred. Leaders have to get results from all types of people with no excuses. Asking for a new teammate or officemate due to personal differences is like advertising your ill-preparedness to deal with the people.
Don't allow your coworker to drive your actions. Don't use your coworker's shortcomings as an excuse for your own. If you have an outburst or miss a deadline because of your annoyance, it reflects your incapability as a team player or possible leader.
Do not wait until you start working to understand work culture and interpersonal skills. Working in organizations that has high standards and a very selective hiring process alongside like-minded people improves your efficiency and satisfaction. Do yourself a favor and always check employer reviews on a company before accepting an offer. Ensure that company values resonate with yours and has everything that you expect to have in your workplace. Remember, only you can direct your day, regardless of people around.
This article was originally published on Kununu.com.
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