Kari is a full-time blogger and ghostwriter. She enjoys writing about how to be happier in life and in love.
Are You Living With a Difficult Co-Worker?
Do you love your job but can't stand your co-workers? Do you dread seeing Fred because you know he is going to talk your ear off about his personal problems when you just want to work?
How about Susan, who gossips about everyone in the office, do you try to avoid her?And what about Tom, Dick, and Harry who bully everyone in the office with their insults and childish behavior, do you hate running into them?
If you answered yes to any of the questions, then congratulations, you work in a normal messed up workplace! Unfortunately, it is going to be hard to escape these kind of co-workers unless you work at home, or you are very fortunate to work with like-minded people.
Since you can't change other people (as much as you would like to), you are going to have to find a way to deal with these people in a mature and non-violent way if you want to get some work done in a less stressful environment.
By the way, these were all tested by me, and I give them my big stamp of approval.
- The co-worker who is a jerk
- The inconsiderate co-worker
- The co-worker who loves to gossip
- The co-worker who whines
- The co-worker who wastes time
Take The Poll!
1. The Co-Worker Who Is a Jerk
This is the man or woman who purposely tries to make you feel small, stupid, or humiliated. (They are also called a bully.) You always leave their presence feeling worse than when you first saw them.
Usually, these people are in a higher job title than you, or they think that they are better than you are, and they would never dare be rude to their boss or someone else who could potentially cost them their job.
Yes, the jerk can be your co-worker or your boss.
They may not be loud and apparent. In fact, they may only be a jerk to you when they think no one else is listening or around.
They may do things like:
- Insult you and your knowledge or skill level.
- Consistently get in your space.
- Try to intimidate you.
- Send you rude and accusatory emails.
- Interrupt you when you are on the phone or otherwise busy.
- Give you dirty looks.
- Give you the silent treatment to make you feel as if you don't matter.
- Put the blame on you even if you had nothing to do with it.
I have to say, the above list describes my husband’s boss and his manner at work. He is a bully who tries to make my husband, and other people, feel bad at every turn. This is probably one of the most stressful co-workers because not only does it suck running into them, but they also go out of their way to make you feel bad.
How Do You Deal With a Co-Worker Who is a Jerk?
First, don't stoop to their level. They are not happy people. No one can be happy and constantly treat other people like crap. It's impossible. So look after your own happiness by not stooping to their level.
Next, understand that nothing you say is likely going to change them. They have to have an eye opening experience that makes them treat other people with respect. Telling them what a jerk they are may earn you some respect from them, but more than likely they will just start to treat you even worse.
Lastly, frame the way you view them in a different manner. For instance, right now you see a jerk. Instead of seeing someone who is mean and hateful, try picturing all the things that must happen to him or her on a daily basis to make him or her so miserable. For example maybe:
- They wake up and hate the way the look.
- Their spouse treats them poorly.
- They have a butt-load of stress on their plate.
- They just lost their mother, brother, or friend.
- They rarely feel happy during the day even if they try to appear happy.
- They have an illness.
- They are being abused.
- They are insecure with themselves.
Once you start to see them as people who are living a life less fortunate than you are, then you can start to change the way you feel towards them and get busy being grateful for your life.
2. The Inconsiderate Co-Worker
This is the person who annoys the heck out of you. They seem to live in their own tiny bubble where they actually think that the world revolves around them. Their main concern is their happiness, their voice, their health, and their success - and they take no one else into consideration.
They may do things like:
- Talk very loud while you are trying to concentrate.
- Interrupt you when you are talking.
- Take the last doughnut while you are reaching for it.
- Sit down in a spot that you have already set up for yourself.
- Pee on the toilet (I had to add this!)
- Slam the door in your face.
- Cut in front of you while walking or in a line.
- Not replace the water bottle after they use the last drop of water.
The inconsiderate co-worker can do many things. However, the main point is, they make things as comfortable as possible for them without taking your feelings, thoughts, or - really just YOU into consideration.
How Do You Deal With an Inconsiderate Co-Worker?
Again, this boils down to how you choose to react to the person, because an inconsiderate person will never even take the time to consider your opinion. They don't care! They are inconsiderate! You will just end up making yourself more upset when they go on their merry way without acknowledging what you have said.
Also, these are the people who never seem to get fired. If you believe in the law of attraction, then I would have to say that these people expect NOT to lose their job because they are so great, and therefore, they don't. Therefore, even though you can complain to the boss (or the boss’s boss) not much seems to happen with their attitudes or job.
However, an inconsiderate person will likely interfere with your work, so you should say something. For instance, if they are screaming at the top of your lungs outside of your office, you may want to ask them to quiet down because you are trying to concentrate. If they don't (which will likely be the case) then feel no shame in getting up and closing your door. This will be a non-verbal message that they will likely miss, but it will also allow you to shut their voice out a little.
If you don't have a door to close, try framing them in a different light. For instance, an inconsiderate jerk is not likely someone who is spreading a lot of happiness to other people. It has to be very lonely with such a narrow view of the world as they go along in their bubble of self interest, and even if it's not - then he or she is missing out on the gift of being aware of other people around them. Trust me, it is a gift to be considerate and be aware of other people's needs...it makes your life richer.
Feel bad for them instead of angry at them.
3. The Co-Worker Who Loves to Gossip
Why does Susan come into work every morning? It can't be to work because she never does that...oh yeah, it's to find out about and spread the latest gossip!
Do you hate it when the office gossip is coming towards you? There is a good reason! If they gossip about others, then you know that they gossip about you. Plus they are very draining.
Unfortunately, many people like to engage in gossip, and this is why someone who gossips can always find someone else to talk to at work. They can only be happy when they are spreading the latest news.
They may do things like:
- Tell you about others personal life.
- Tell you about their own personal life.
- Tell you about others work life.
- And most importantly tell you information that is completely wrong and untrue!
People who gossip do not take the time to check facts. They hear something and they run with it! You can get yourself into a lot of trouble listening to these people, and it really is just a waste of your day.
How Do You Deal With a Co-Worker Who Wants To Gossip?
The answer to this one is very simple. You say, "I don't want to hear the gossip" or "Sorry, I don't like to talk about other people." As soon as you tell them that you are not going to listen to their gossip, they will automatically clam up and walk away. Why?
- They will likely feel embarrassed because they know their gossip is wrong but no one else calls them on it.
- They will have nothing else to say because all they do is gossip.
Either way, as soon as they get the message that you do not want to partake in the latest gossip, they will leave you alone!
4. The Co-Worker Who Whines
This is the co-worker who is never, ever happy. They hate everything about work, and they tend to whine about everything outside of work as well. They have a victim mentality.
They may do things like:
- Complain about their workload (even though they never work!)
- Complain about the boss.
- Complain about their co-workers.
- Whine about how work is so unfair and hard.
- Whine about their paycheck.
- Whine about the raise they just got.
Whine and complain, whine and complain - that is what their day is made up of. These people can drain your energy just by looking at them!
They never make you happy.
They hardly ever talk about anything good.
And if they do happen to talk about something good, then they quickly follow it up with "but that doesn't matter because I still don't have what I wanted."
They are an endless pit of complaints.
How Do You Deal With a Co-Worker Who Wants To Whine?
This is also a simple answer. If you are not willing to listen to their whining, then they will not talk to you. They need someone to agree with them or else their words do not have power behind them. Therefore, stop agreeing with them.
Warning: I did this at work, and it worked very quickly. Then, however, they started to whine about me because I was all of a sudden someone who was not in their negative pool. Therefore, if you don't want to listen to them, then you should expect them not to 'like' you anymore. However, this is natural when you move out of their negative level of energy. They can't relate to you anymore!
Every time the whiner says something negative, contradict it with something positive. For instance, if they say "This job sucks! I can't believe we get paid so little!" then respond with "I like the job, and I'm quite happy with the pay." They may ignore your comment and keep talking about how much the job sucks, but if you follow up their next sentence with the same kind of response, then they will slowly start to back away and look for someone else to whine to.
What You Might Like to Do to Whiners!
5. The Co-Worker Who Wastes Time
This person will do everything in their power to avoid work, and they will try to drag you down with them. They can't just sit and stare at the wall, because that would be boring. No, usually they have to come and bug you and talk to you about nonsense stuff that just wastes time. They may talk about work or they may talk about current events, but no matter what they talk about, it will be a waste of time.
And if they are not bugging you, then they are annoying the heck out of you with their wasteful actions.
They may do things like:
- Spend an hour getting their coffee ready.
- Talk on the phone for the majority of their day.
- Talk to you about the latest unimportant stories they heard on the way to work.
- Organize their work area so they look like they are working.
- Talk to the boss for hours about 'important subjects.'
- Ask you ridiculous questions about work that they should know.
Really, the truth is that these time wasting co-workers are good at doing nothing all day, and for some reason, they never get fired. If you or I were to try to waste time all day like them, we would be in the boss’s office being yelled at.
How Do You Deal With a Time Wasting Co-Worker?
You ignore them! Do not let them hit your radar because if you do, then they will drive you insane trying to figure out how they can live with themselves doing nothing all day.
Yelling at them will do no good because it will go in one ear and out the other. And we all know the boss seems to think they work all day, so complaining about them will do nothing, except make you mad.
Just ignore them and get on with your day. Be proud of the fact that you actually work for a living, and earn your money.
While earning money for wasting time is a talent, it is not a fulfilling talent. They do not know what it feels like to actually do a job well done and earn money for doing so. Live your life with fulfillment and let them waste theirs!
Dealing With a Difficult Person: A Good Way to Look at It
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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
Question: How do I deal with a co-worker that does all 5 topics listed above and is also my uncle?
Answer: Quit. Find another job. Don't put yourself through that crap.
Share YOUR Story About Difficult Co-Workers
Kari (author) on October 22, 2019:
Sounds like they don't like you for some reason. Did you do something to tick everyone off? I'm assuming not since you are just trying to do everything right.
Or, possibly, you are cutting into their tips or hours? Could that be it?
Regardless, if you need to work with these people, you need to get things settled somehow. Talking to your manager could help. They don't know what's going on unless you tell them.
Time may help too. Do your job and do it well.
Don't let them push you around though. If you do, they won't stop.
Robie on October 20, 2019:
Hi. Just saw your posted and I was being struck. Actually something happen to me only yesterday. I’m the newest employee and was assigned to another station with new faces of coworker on my 2nd day. Instead of guiding/training me everyone’s ignoring me. I want to learn and I’m struggling to learn on how to make drinks. Instead I’m the one whose keep asking how to do this how to do that. And everyone’s is like staring at me. I mean what would you expect to a person on his/her second day at work. Everyone started from a scratch. I feel so bad for what happen. I am the newest and was left behind. I did a lot of messed up because no one tells me the right things. Also, I was humiliated and blame by one coworker in front of the customer which I haven’t done wrong. When the customer heard what she’s saying at me, the lady customer reacts and said, “Why your talking like that to her, it’s not her fault okay, it’s my fault”. “I lately tells her I wanted to add some extra spices to my drinks”. The coworker just kept silent and did not say anything. But I know she’s mad at me. I know not everyone is like that. Unfortunately I was assigned on that day for a group of people whose very unprofessional. Any helpful information how will I cope this people? Do I need to tell this to my managers? Thanks for the reply.
Kari (author) on December 19, 2018:
@Ned - He sounds horrible. I'm sorry you have to deal with him. It's not fair you have to deal with someone who obviously isn't a happy or compassionate person.
Ned on December 18, 2018:
My supervisor is all of these things. I need my job and he makes it as difficult as he possibly can, every day. I’m told repeatedly by everybody else I work with that I am invaluable and things have been great since I was hired, yet he treats me like dirt endlessly. When I leave for the day he sends me rude and accusatory texts and then demands that I not speak to him. Today he told me he wants my office key back so he can lock me out.
...I put his tape measure in the tool box instead of on his desk.
Should I order 300 tape measures and have them delivered to him at work?
It’s like he’s trying to make me lose respect for him by being a child.
Sherry on March 17, 2018:
I am working with a whiner,time waster, and a coworker who loves to gossip. I am tired of all her bullshit so I just ignored her. One time she cried in our normal conversation because she is insisting I am mad at her and that is where I draw the line. I just pretend she is not there cause it is easier to work hard alone than get stressed because of her. She kept asking me why I am mad but i keep saying there's nothing wrong. I am dealing with her friend too. That friend of hers is such a plastic bitch so I responded with the same attitude. I just hope the best friend stop before I lose any ounce of patience I have for her. In the end I thought I am not paid enough to take all this bullshit so I just ignore them both and stay away as possible although it's tiring when you are working a job that is meant for two people.
Kari (author) on February 28, 2018:
@Cody - I think you need to unwind, get grounded in the here and now, and stop overthinking things. You are right, you are your own worst critic and, also, enemy. You are going to wind yourself up into a stress machine and pay the price with your health (or possibly your career) if you don't.
I know a guy who works hard at work and his co-workers don't really like him either, despite him being an amazing guy. He's a little awkward and antisocial, and that doesn't sit well with most people. I think people expect you to be social and similar to them at work, but not everyone is like that.
I suggest you work on yourself. Work on being present and letting go of overthinking. You may want more balance in your life too where you are not just focused on work and dating, and more on your life as a whole. Lifebook is great for that! Check it out at http://bestfriendreviews.com/go/Lifebook
Cody on February 28, 2018:
I'm curious as to if a coworker who works too hard or takes the job "too serious" falls under the catagory of worst co workers? I work two full time jobs and i have found that i need to keep my momentum so i tend to work very hard and diligently as well as take eveything at work serious. From what i can tell it seemed to alianate me from my co workers. I am not bossy about it and i keep to myself for the most part but i find that most of them seem to act like i don't exist. Can someone please tell me if i am doing something wrong or how i can fix it? I am trying so hard and feel that without getting along with my co workers it will all fall apart. I am in the middle of a big master plan to have a house and a payed of sports bike as well as start at ASU in 2019. I am about to start a major part of the process which was planned out for months. Last thing i need is for this to fall through on me based off of raport around work. Once i start this i have to keep the momentum up or i will not suceed. I even went through the effort of building my credit up to 746 credit so i would get aproved for the USAA CC with 0 apr for the first year and i could use it for a downpayment on my bike so that i could manage the payments and take a chunk of $1500 dollars off of the regular 5.3% apr for financing. I've already done the math on every angle even down to the 11% monthly income for food and unexpected expenses and the annual amount of money spent on gas for my car and the motorcycle. I even went and looked at houses in the tempe area to get a feel for what i can mortgage.If this goes without a hitch my monthly income will have a left over $2,599.81 to save each month for the year period. Once the card is payed off the bike will follow suit soon after and i will have a solid credit history for that and i can start the process of home buying. That way i have my life established by 21 and i can start college soon after. I work very hard on personal growth and i am my worst critic. I just feel like i'm losing my edge when it comes to the coworkers right now. I find it hard to focus because i start overthinking it all and wondering if they hate me. I am what they call a hyper-intellectual and i tend to always have some thought going on in my head unwillingly so when i think about things or plan i overplan and have a contingency plan for every contingency plan. Another issue right now is the unwilling urge to find a girlfriend. I see all the kids my age partying and having fun or sex all the fckn time. I tend to feel lonely. I want to succeed in my own life so much i am hungry for it and i want it more then i want to fckn breath man. I have the urge to have a girlfriend and it is so strong that i have gone down to tempe beach park and ran my 7m mile down there and had to fight myself not to approach any girls. I'm afraid that if i start something one of two things will happen. I'll either lose my nerve and slow down on my plans or i will have a good time and be betrayed or have it end badly and be emotionally unstable and not do my job right. I am feeling like i'm on the wrong side of a double edged blade. Considering it's double edged neither side is favorable. Any suggestions would be amazing please!
Dylan D. on August 13, 2017:
I'd like to add another to this list, the "Boss's Pet." This is a particular person who was hired by the boss because he/she is their best friend and they will do anything like a mindless robot without another thought as to whether it should logical or not. I have a coworker who will follow every tiny rule even if it is inconsiderate to the customer and the given situations. She'll blantantly screw over a customer over technicalities that the bosses themselves advise not to do.
Kari (author) on April 06, 2017:
@anju - Don't put your self-worth at work around what she says. If she was a friend to you, then she would still be a friend to you. Obviously she just goes where she gets the most attention, so she's not worthy worrying about.
Kari (author) on November 12, 2016:
@seriouslystressedout - My husband had a co-worker who sounds just like yours. Unfortunately, things never changed.
He eventually had to leave the company, as messed up as that sounds, because it seems like everyone was blind to this guy's ridiculous attitude and way of being at work.
Even the boss didn't seem to care that he did nothing, complained about everything and everyone (even though he did nothing), and was just a downright miserable twat.
You can't change other people, and if you try to make your point heard when you feel like you're going to pull your hair out, it seems like they think YOU are the crazy one, not the person you are talking about.
Therefore, in my opinion, it's either accept that this is the way it is or find a new place to work, where craziness isn't tolerated, for your sanity.
Seriously stressed worker on November 12, 2016:
I have one colleague who does all of the following. They are also nasty and a bully.
They seem to live in their own tiny bubble where they actually think that the world revolves around them. Their main concern is their happiness, their voice, their health, and getting attention - and they take no one else into consideration.
Talk very loud for most of the day.
Are constantly prattling on about their own personal life.
They complain about the workload (even though they never work!)
Complain about the boss.
Complain about co-workers.
Whine about how work is so unfair and hard.
They do everything in their power to avoid work, and start nasty bitchy campaigns when they cannot drag you down with them.
They talk to anyone who will listen about nonsense stuff that just wastes time. They may talk about work or they may talk about current events, but no matter what they talk about, it's a waste of time.
They talk on the phone or gossip with anyone who will listen to them in the office for the majority of their day.
They talk to anyone and everyone about the latest unimportant stories they heard on the way to work.
Organize their work area so they look like they are working.
Talk to the boss for hours about 'important subjects.'
Ask anyone who will listen ridiculous questions about work that they should know.
They are never dealt with. They suck up and massage egos of supervisors. It's so blatant and cringeworthy but, shockingly, it works!
What do I do before I go utterly mad???????
Suzie on November 12, 2016:
Oh my gosh, I have one person who fills several of these rolls. It's driving me potty.
Denise on October 30, 2016:
I work with a woman who loves to be seen, loves to talk and talks over me especially and think she knows everything. The only way I can get her to shut up is not talk or acknowledged her when she has talked over in a meeting. Once the meeting ends I am usually upset with her actions, so I ignore her. I have brought it to her attention but she continues. So now I limit my conversations. She is loud and always has a story that's better than the person she is talking to. She doesn't even realize people start walking away or saying I got to go and she keeps going. I have been told that she is intimidated by me and needs to prove something. Tired of this women and her ignorance.
Anonymous on October 25, 2016:
I could have used this article two years ago!
But, I am glad that I happened to locate it today.
Thank you for putting this article together,so I can now and in the future figure out how to work along side with all co-workers.
Kari (author) on September 21, 2016:
@Anonymous: You are not saying what the problem was, what she said, or what you may or may not have done. People don't just get mad for no reason.
I'm assuming an HR manager wouldn't say something like that unless they thought it. I'm not sure what mental health-closure counseling is, but I would guess that you may have lost something or someone and they figure you haven't dealt with it.
Maybe it's time to look inside and be honest with what is going on and what you can do to solve the problem.
Anonymous on September 21, 2016:
So this colleague of mine, happened to approach me as I was leaving work and yelled at me whilst pointing their sharp index finger -looking aggressive like she was about to slap me. After she was had finished and was pink with rage. I calmly told her, "Let's return to the office and speak to my supervisor." She refused and stormed away. I decided to proceed to speak to my supervisor when she suddenly storms in and begins yelling and pointing her finger at me again then after she has her say she storms out. I was flabbergasted and highly offended by this action that I submitted an official complaint. During the HR-grievance process, I suggested that this colleague of mine have anger counseling but the HR manager concluded that was not acceptable and that I needed mental health-closure counseling. Does that make any sense?????
Kari (author) on August 15, 2016:
@KHC - She's taking credit for stuff you are doing? She sounds very insecure to me.
I would just let her know that she is not the boss and she can't get away with taking credit for things you've done.
I think when you call her on it, she will back off because she won't want to get into trouble.
Don't be rude about it, but just confront her with what she has done. If you ask her to explain why she took the credit for something that you did, she will know that she's busted and not likely want to feel that way again if you are going to confront her every time.
Moreover, remind her that it's not her lab, it's the health clinics lab and everyone needs to go in there to do their job. Again, don't do it in a mean way. But, don't be meek about it. Be upfront and confident because you have every right to be!
Kari (author) on August 12, 2016:
@Chad - He could just have selective hearing. Like he has a hard time focusing on you because he doesn't find you that interesting or worthy of listening to. I know when I'm not that interested in what someone is saying, I have a very hard time hearing them. But, that's my problem, not theirs!
I would avoid talking to him as much as possible. Yelling will probably piss him off too. He just doesn't sound happy.
Also, if he's not your boss, I would eventually tell your boss that he is being confrontational with you for no reason. He shouldn't be acting like that at work.
KHC on August 11, 2016:
I work at a health clinic we hired a new nurse and she now thinks she is in charge of everything. I will go into the lab to get something for a patient as I have done for years and she will want to know what I want in "HER" lab or Clinic. She makes me feel like I am takeing something & she is better than me.
I will do or get something for a patient Co-worker or Doctor and she will tell them she did it.
The list goes on -- What can I do???
Chad B on July 16, 2016:
Lately there is one particular person who tells me to speak up anytime I say anything. Everyone seems to hear me fine. The same person seems to hear me fine when he chooses to. I don't want to start yelling or raising my voice excessively because I believe he is just messing with me. No one else has complained that I speak too softly; ever before. The person doesn't have a hearing problem that I am aware of but he gets really mad and confrontational anytime I say something or ask a question. The only option I felt I had left was to say nothing at all. So the rest of the week I didn't talk to him or anyone else. I refuse to shout so he can't deny hearing me because I tried that and he still told me to speak up. I am just confused why he would target me to mess with. I am a new employee and a retired veteran just trying to fit in and not rock the boat. Please help. Thanks you.
Kari (author) on April 29, 2016:
@Amy - Missed this comment totally. I wish I would have caught it sooner!
Nobody makes you roll your eyes. You do that by your perception and attitude. I'm sure other people can be nice to her despite her being annoying.
When you make other people feel bad for any reason, you are the one choosing to do it. Yes, they may be annoying you, but you are choosing how you react to them, and you can't blame anyone for your choice on how you react.
Amy on October 15, 2015:
Actually, the jerk doesn't have to be unhappy in life to be annoyed or irritated with one person in the office. I know I work with someone who constantly asks dumb questions, makes inane contributions to other people's conversations, and does not stop talking long enough to get some actual work done. She's the only one I roll my eyes at and pretend she doesn't exist, but I'm really nice to my other coworkers, and they often come to me when they need help/guidance.
I wake up every morning to a perfect life and a job I love... But if it makes people feel better to think it's all "the jerk" and not them, it is what it is. But maybe some introspection would be valuable before you can get the jerk to stop, since it's often something you did (or are doing) and refuse to acknowledge.
Kari (author) on September 18, 2015:
@Sarah - I love your point that she doesn't think you understand what she's doing. That's very true of people who are so arrogant and ignorant.
Lol on the wine. Hopefully, she will work her way out of the job.
Sarahcg3 on September 17, 2015:
Completely true. I have a jerk coworker who is so eager to point out my smallest mistakes that when I show her that sometimes it wasn't a mistake on my part, she doesn't listen to me at all. Just misconstrues what I say and tries her best to make me look like I'm being silly. It is exhausting and after she has dumped on me she treats me as though we're best friends. Sadly, she thinks I don't understand what she's doing. You try your best not to stoop to their level, but I have fantasies of really letting her have it so she has some understanding of what it's like. I've been in this job less than a year, so for some continuity I want to stay but my wine consumption has seen a sharp increase.
Ebonny from UK on August 01, 2015:
I just love the images throughout this hub, plus your advices on handling problem co-workers are useful and thought provoking. Am linking this article to one of my hubs on workplace problems.
Heather on July 12, 2015:
I am dealing with a coworker that will not speak to me but will to anyone else in schoo. She often bully's up with other co workers and say things that are not true. She always has an attitude. She always assumes you are telling her how to do her job when you are just pointing out what you see because you are to busy to get to it. When I asked her what was ring she did not even look at me or respond back. It is just frustrating to deal with the attitude every day. We have a meeting with supervisor to try to work things out but I am nervous about the outcome.
Kari (author) on January 21, 2015:
@Muffin - I'm sorry, that's really hard to deal with - even with a good mental attitude.
Muffin on January 21, 2015:
well now they've become malicious. They've started tattling to the boss about petty stuff. Blaming me when it's everyone's duty.
Still, I'm smiling, focusing on the positive, doing my job and moving on....
Kari (author) on January 16, 2015:
@muffin - I was thinking about your co-worker today, and you are right - they are just that kind of person.
That's why being negative towards them will not help. They will continue being who they are...maybe even intensified, and you will be more miserable. I think what you did was perfect!
Muffin on January 16, 2015:
thanks. That's a really good article! I do believe that's what I'm working with, a know-it-all....
Well, now I have some more good advice to go by.
muffin on January 16, 2015:
Thanks :-). I read another article before your response and put it to work today. I stayed positive and just smiled and went on. When the "know-it-all" started in on me, I just went on with my work. I focused on the good, so to speak. It helped, I think....
I really think they are just this type of person. And I'm letting them get the best of me.
I'll take a look at you suggested article. Thank you so much for your input.
Kari (author) on January 16, 2015:
@Muffin - Actually you don't sound like a whiner. I think many of us have been there, and I can feel your pain!
Your co-worker sounds like a know-it-all.
I would tell you to talk the boss, but chances are that this person will flip the script on you somehow and come out looking good. That's what happens with these people. I personally don't know how they do it - maybe it is just their belief about how great they are, but they are loved by the boss and can easily make you look stupid.
I like your husband's suggestion, but your co-worker sounds like someone who will not take that very well, and you could create more problems in the long run. It might add fuel to their 'mission'.
But, I wouldn't let this person get away with crap. If they are not walking their talk, then I would point that out to them somehow.
For instance, if they are breaking the rules, and they are quick to point out how you break the rules, then you may want to casually mention something without attacking them. For instance, if they are talking about someone, then you can say something like, "That new policy about not bad-mouthing other co-workers seems to be making the workplace a better place, don't you think?" It doesn't attack them directly and it makes them think about their behavior. And, it should get them off your back for a while.
I found an article on Forbes that may help you out. http://www.forbes.com/sites/jacquelynsmith/2013/09...
Muffin on January 15, 2015:
i think I might be the whiner :-( I'm dealing with a coworker that I'm not sure which category they fit into. They are my equal. I've been at the company for a few more years than them. (They've only been there for not even a year.) yet, they are the golden child to the boss. Can do no wrong, point out flaws in everyone, ESPECIALLY me. And now, it seems, has started acting as my (self appointed) supervisor. Meaning, they constantly preach the rules/policies to me, point out my mistakes, and generally get away with many "no-nos", if that makes sense. It's starting to seem like there are many double standards. And because of this, I am miserable when I have to work with this person. I moan and complain (whine) about them to my partner and another coworker. I try so hard to be positive but they really push me :-( any suggestions? Of course, my husband (coming from a man's mind) says I should just tell the coworker in question to just bugger off when they start in on me. I am not a very confrontational person....
Kari (author) on December 17, 2014:
@Lois: Yay! That's awesome!!!
Lois W Walker from Snowflake, Arizona on December 17, 2014:
Thank you for this article. I was seriously considering quitting a job that I love because due to a couple of my co-workers. Your article really opened my eyes and helped me to understand that I didn't do anything wrong. Bless you.
Elizabeth Lesar from New York, NY on December 11, 2014:
It's very hard to feel sorry for someone who is bugging the heck out of you, or worse! Yes, these people eventually are their own punishment, but when such a person is your boss and in control of your destiny at work, these tactics can help minimize your emotional trauma, but in the end, there's not much you can to do avoid them or their actions.
Kari (author) on August 15, 2014:
@Elteena: I love it! I think, too, that we have to remember we are all trying to do the best we can in this world. Some people are struggling, and having the understanding of that can make a world of difference in how we react to them. Thanks for sharing!
Elteena Thacal on August 14, 2014:
Love all theeeeese!! have been in an office environment for some odd 30 + years, in 5 difference offices. Co-workers at that time of my earlier careers were really very friendly till 1998 when I am starting to experience changes working with co-workers in the same office. The spirits of Hatred, Jealousy and Gossip began to pop up and took place in day-to-day work. Gossip about your dressing up in office, don't bother to say 'good-morning' or 'hallow', make false statements, bringing your past to present, hatred arises 'cos other people praise you for always looking good, smart and young (even thought age does not tell!) etc, etc................... But few things I always have in me is, Honesty, Respect, Patience. I always display my honesty and I respect my co-workers. I display my patience at work place. And twice my Boss made a statement on me like "Eltee, you are one of the most patience lady in the world and I cannot understand how you can have patience in you!!!" I just looked at my boss and smile, not saying a word. I thank my Lord for giving me these gifts!!! amen
Kari (author) on June 23, 2014:
@ Carolina - Compassion for them and compassion for yourself. That, or look for another job.
Carolina Chick on June 23, 2014:
How do you handle a coworker that fits every type of person that was discussed in this article?
Frienderal from Singapore on June 20, 2014:
Interesting hub! :) I certainly do not enjoy working those who are irresponsible and tries to shove their work to others, which often leads to conflict amongst co-workers.
Kari (author) on April 03, 2014:
@fpherj I have never liked the gossiper either. In fact, many gossipers that I came across at work were also time wasters, inconsiderate, and definitely whiners.
Kari (author) on April 03, 2014:
@Hairy - You are not doing things that American way. You are doing things your way. Own up to your behaviors. You can't blame them on someone else.
Suzie from Carson City on April 03, 2014:
EXCELLENT hub! My least favorite? THE GOSSIPER! Oh please...work place gossip is the worst! It creates far too much drama, arguments, hurt feelings, "revenge" behavior.....I despise it.
There is one at least for every type of individual that exists, in one's place of employment.....and depending upon the size of the staff....there's an entire circus of characters under the Big Top!
I was quite happy with my job (retired years ago) but being in a management position, left me dealing with a lot of this utter nonsense.
To be totally honest, I eventually learned to deal with the gossip issue by treating the culprits as though they were TEEN AGERS. The way I see it, they should have gotten the message!
I enjoyed your hub. You speak the truth!...UP++ Tweeted.
Hairy Guy on April 03, 2014:
i'm a time-waster at work! and yes i get away with it hehe. hey i am just doing things the american way. take as much as you can while you can get away with it. i am just not a politician or a lobbyist. that's the only difference.
Kari (author) on March 18, 2014:
Wishing you the best Blossom! I'm sensitive too, so I know how it feels.
blossom akari on March 18, 2014:
Yeah you're right. I thought so too.
I'll be working with her tomorrow again (first time after this mess) and I'm thinking I'll calmy talk her about it, try to put an end to this. I hope I don't burst into tears, I'm too sensitive and I hate it. Thanks for replying, really appriciate it.
Kari (author) on March 18, 2014:
Wow. I must have known you were going to ask this because I had a dream that was exactly like this last night, and I was in your shoes.
All I can say is that actions speak louder than words. Stay true to yourself and show everyone that you are not whatever gossip was spread about you. Eventually people will start to change their minds back.
Until then, there is nothing you can do to force them to look at you differently, and exhibiting negative emotions will not work in your favor.
blossom akari on March 18, 2014:
A gossip co-worker in my office gossiped about me to my parter (also a annoying gossip co-worker without whom i cannot complete any of the work). Sadly she believed and spread the unreal gossip about me to many others. Now no one including my partner is speaking to me, they all stare at me angrily. It's so hard to sit depressed in office with no one to talk to. What should I do?
Just An Employee on February 12, 2014:
Recently the work stations have been moved to a new room. Someone took it into their head to unscrew some of the over head fluorescent lights above their work station. Then gradually others. Enough were still on so that I didn't say anything... until yesterday. I came in and the work place is all lights out. I flip the switch and... no lights come on. I can't work in the dim/dark like this. So I start screwing in the bulbs again. And of course the guy who did this starts fussing "That's enough. We have to work together you know." I just pointedly say "Its stupid to work in the dark. I need light to see." Then continue screwing in enough lights over my desk area to work. I'm betting that these will all be unscrewed again next time I go in... Its been progressing for about the third week now to this stage. Finally wrote a brief note telling the boss that I screwed in the light bulbs so I could work and got fussed at. Told her I'm not making an issue of it, just letting her know what I did and why and that there were complaints. Not sure what else to do about it right now.
Kari (author) on January 01, 2014:
You are right stmaja! Fixed!
stmaja on January 01, 2014:
I like the article but in the title of the article, the word co-workers should not have an apostrophe. It should be co-workers, not co-worker's. It should be without an apostrophe because it is a plural that you mean, as in more than one co-worker. Using co-worker's indicates a possessive, as in the coworker's jacket.
Joyette Helen Fabien from Dominica on September 18, 2013:
Very interesting! I love the way that you first present the situation then go on to explain how to deal with it. That way it is easy to get the message out of each one: don't stoop to the level of the jerk; don't encourage the gossip etc. Thanks for sharing.
Alecia Murphy from Wilmington, North Carolina on September 12, 2012:
So true! But you're right if people who have to deal with these offenders stooped to their level-nothing would be accomplished. However, for the most part I just don't have that kind of time to waste worrying and commiserating alongside them. Great hub!
Michelle Liew from Singapore on September 08, 2012:
I love this, Relationships. I related particularly well to the first two. We all run into the ones who try to give us a hard time because they themselves have been given aggro.....the thing is, they don't know how to deal with it properly. Thanks for the write!!
aykianink on September 07, 2012:
Good layout. Looks quite professional.
Kari (author) on September 07, 2012:
Oh, I'm sure you are the normal one who has to deal with the rest of them. ;)
Crystal Tatum from Georgia on September 07, 2012:
Really great hub, very thorough. It made me wonder, which one am I? Yikes!