Michael Ballard and Mags Thomson both learned from experience how to deal with a toxic boss. How do they affect you and what can you do to protect yourself?
In a world where we are hardly viewed as people, and more as the embodiment of whatever job we have, we may need to ask: what are boundaries at work anyway?
Even when survivors distance themselves from a toxic person, we often still hear their voice in our heads, drowning out our own inner-voice and reaffirming the doubt that was planted a long time ago. In effect, we have a bully in our head.
Our most immediate association with the word violence is of physical aggression. But you can utterly destroy a person, and never lay a hand on them.
Recently I had a conversation with some co-workers about who had worked for the worst boss. When I said: “I used to work for a boss that hit me”. I had clearly marked the winner. “Why did you not just leave the job?” my friend asked astonished. Of course I did leave the job eventually, but it took me a few years, and some major health scares to realize what was going on.