How to Deal With Toxic Work Relationships

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

I’m doing something different today because it’s my DAMN birthday. Now that I’m 31, I’m officially IN IT. Thank goodness for k-beauty skincare because I feel like I look pretty damn good for 31. I feel like I have to hide less of myself and have this confidence that things will work out. This is mainly because I left my very toxic 20s behind.

I was sitting here and thinking about what the biggest difference was between my 20s and 30s are. One thing is for certain, I’ve gotten rid of all the crazy toxic people who are energy vampires out of my life. 

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

Most of my 20s were spent working in politics. I’ve worked for a lot of important people and also people who never became “someone.” But, I worked equally hard for all. I pulled 100 hours weeks, gained 60-80 pounds in one year, and even drank 5 Redbulls a day. I worked for non-profits and candidates across Washington State.

While I learned a lot, I met so many toxic people. Like people who would use me to get somewhere. Sell me out behind my back, just so that they could get ahead. One time, I asked for a raise and they said, “But you have your husband, right?”

I’ve had a male boss ask me to “change my clothes,” because I was not presentable (which is not true because I was literally wearing something from J crew, covered head to toe, and wearing a rain jacket. I think he didn’t like my rain jacket?)

I’ve had candidates grab my arm (aggressively and hard) and yell at me about “never divulging information about their life,” which I never did, so I wasn’t sure why I was getting yelled at.

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

One evening, I got a call from a candidate. He wanted to talk. I imagined it was about the big win we just had and how we will be moving into a new office soon. He then said, “Crystal, I don’t think you want this job.” This was a job I was hired a week before this “talk.” It was a permanent position (rather than a campaign job and a big deal), and I was so excited about it. I was flabbergasted and just stared at him. I could feel myself becoming angry and my face was flushed and hot, but I kept it together because I didn’t want to make a scene.

I questioned him about where he was going with this and he said told me he actually hired someone else. He told me I’ve been replaced. Come to find out, it was his partner’s friend. 

Shady.

Then his partner called me into a lunch room and told me about how she’s not happy with me because she’s heard some rumors about me talking crap about her. Um, are we in high school? I literally sat there and thought, “Is a legislator and his girlfriend bullying me right now? What is my life?”

This was just one occasion.

Literally, the list is endless. And I’m not the only one who can attest to feeling like this. I talk to at least 2 woman a week who feel this way who reach out from my past life or from Instagram who have “heard about my stories and want advice.” I feel like this is a time in history where we can’t stay silent about abuse and bullying anymore.

I hope you are never in situations that I’m in, but incase you are, this is how I delt with them:

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

  • Be great at your job and document it: America is really obsessed with documentation. If it’s not in writing, it doesn’t exist. Write down the date, how it happened and how it made you feel. If you cross a big threshold, write those down too, because you can “prove” your successes. I mean after all, a 40+ year old calendar was submitted as “proof” from Kavanaugh’s hearing. So, that sort of says it all right?
  • Walk away: One time my boss said, “You don’t seem like you are paying attention, do you even fucking care” (word verbatim) All I said was, I feel like you are upset right now and I can’t really handle your demeanor. I’ll be back when you are ready to talk.

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

  • Call out when things happen at the time it happens: I know this is a tricky one because oftentimes aggressive or abusive bosses don’t want to hear it. However, they still value your opinion (somewhat), and when you stand up to them, it checks them. Pick your battles wisely but call them out when it’s important.
  • Have an exit plan: Obviously if you are in this situation, you need to leave. It might seem like it’s endless and it might seem like it will break down if you leave, but it won’t. Your boss will be salty about you leaving, so make sure to have a plan on when you leave and how you do it. I think this is one of my biggest mistakes and one I learned from the most!

If you are going through this, you are strong and you can get through this! These experiences, although horrible, are the ones that made me stronger. It helped me start my own successful business and have a strong sense of self in the world of blogging and YouTube-ing. Now go crush it with your vag power!

Also, please join #glowtogether our anti-bully campaign here. 

Stay strong #saltycoven

ps: These are pictures living my best life after this mess. thx, bye 🙂

 

Salty Blog (Crystal Reed) in Oahu, Hawaii | photoshoot | Waring polka dot dress from Nordstrom and red flamingo shirt from Urban Outfitters. Shoes from Clementines, Seattle, brand Miista | How to deal with toxic work relationships

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