As you leave the office every evening, do you consistently find yourself exhausted, stressed, and dreading the mere thought of going to work the next day? Although it is not unusual to have these feelings at the end of a long workday, experiencing those emotions day in and day out can have a serious impact on your ability to perform your job and maintain a high level of productivity.

One potential reason for these feelings is toxicity in your workplace. A common misconception is that toxicity in the workplace is obvious- coworkers yelling at each other, employees who are scared to leave their cubicles, managers barking orders, etc. However, toxicity in the workplace can be much more insidious, taking the form of workplace gossip, passive aggressive behavior, disrespect for work/life balance, and cliques.

While you have no control over the toxicity level of your workplace, you can control how you deal with others and allow them to affect you. The tips below will help you to stay sane in a toxic environment.

  • If you feel like your workplace is toxic, the first thing that you should do is to set clear boundaries between your work life and your personal life. Afterall, the last thing that you need is to allow toxicity to seep into your time away from the office. Unless you have a job that requires you to maintain communication after hours, don’t check work email or respond to texts during your time off to set a clear boundary.
  • In a toxic environment, often times there are key players who will try to bring your morale down to their level. Combat their negativity by focusing on what you are grateful for and what you enjoy about your job. Choosing gratitude over negativity can help to create a barrier between you and the negativity that surrounds you.
  • Once you have protected yourself from toxic energy, choose who to surround yourself with- there’s safety in numbers, right? Simply by exuding a positive attitude, you will start attracting likeminded coworkers who also steer clear of the gossip, passive aggressive behavior and negativity. Develop these relationships and you will start to notice a difference in your desire to go into the office every day.
  • Workplace toxicity can be suffocating. Don’t wait until the end of the day to go outside and get some fresh air. Use your breaks to leave the office and clear your head. Go and find a nearby coffee shop to de-stress at, go out to your car and turn on your favorite song, or take a walk around the block. Staying in the toxicity all day will only detract from your morale.

Regardless of the level of toxicity in your workplace, never use the negativity of others as an excuse to lower yourself to their level. Use the ideas above to help you to stay positive and productive in a toxic environment.