Quiet and Alone

Question:

I am quiet person who finds it very difficult to talk to people. I have been working somewhere for about a year and feel that people don’t like me. I don’t know what to do. They are always “taking the mick of me” in everything I do.

I feel like im always being watched. Is there a way I can get people to talk to me or get them to like me? Sometimes I feel when I do talk to people they use it to take the mick out of me with other colleagues.

I don’t know why they are horrible to me. I have done nothing wrong to them. I always keep to myself. I get the impression that my manager wants to get rid of me I hear people say “we tried to scare her out but it didn’t work”

Signed,

Trying To Find Answers


Answer:

Dear Trying To Find Answers:

It certainly sounds as though you work un a place where people are cruel and insensitive. However, rarely is EVERYONE that way. So, maybe you need to identify those who do not treat you badly and ask them what they think is going on.

If you work in a company with a Human Resources section, talk to someone there about it and ask them if they have ideas. Talk directly to your manager about it, or write to that person. Just say that you would like to be part of the group and don’t know why that is so difficult. Ask if your manager has ideas for how you could feel as though you are part of things. If you are a good worker your manager should want to keep you around, even if he or she is not very helpful with this.

But first, give serious thought to what might be causing this reaction. Nothing justifies your coworkers treating you so badly, but still there may be some issues that make it more likely they will do so.

1. Is your appearance and hygiene absolutely as professional as you can get it? Hair should be clean and very well groomed all the time. Appearance is crucial. If you do not look right for the work environment they may be using that as a reason to think less of you.

Clothes must be very clean and fresh and appropriate for the job. Ditto for shoes and everything else.

If you wear makeup, it should be applied well. If you don’t wear makeup, consider using at least a bit to look more finished for a professional setting.

You say you are quiet. But there are many quiet people who have friends. So, there must be more going on than normal quietness. I think you would benefit from talking to a counselor. It sounds as though you need some professional assistance to help you feel comfortable enough to communicate in a friendly, professional manner with everyone.

If you have brothers or sisters, maybe you could talk to them about it. If you have even one friend, ask that person to honestly tell you what traits you need to work on. You say that people seem to try to “take the mick out of you”, which I understand is a British term meaning, using what you do to make fun of you. If that is the case, consider what it is about your speaking style or patterns that would lead to that. Talk to your friends about all of those things.

Next, make sure you are such a good employee that your manager won’t want you to leave, no matter what. Look at the evaluation form your company uses and work to be excellent in each of those areas. Or, consider what you know to be the standards for work and work to exceed them.

I urge you to get support and encouragement from someone who is familiar with your situation. Also, please consider the suggestion about talking to a professional counselor or psychologist about your extreme shyness.

If what you say is true, that people really are that mean-spirited, I hope you DO find another job soon. You don’t want to work around people like that! But, if you are going to stay, there may be ways to tear down some of the walls between you and others.

Please let us know what happens in this situation. We’ll certainly be wishing you well, and hoping you find more happiness in your worklife.

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina Lewis Rowe

Tina had a thirty-three year career in law enforcement, serving with the Denver Police Department from 1969-1994 and was the Presidential United States Marshal for Colorado from 1994-2002. She provides training to law enforcement organizations and private sector groups and does conference presentations related to leadership, workplace communications and customized topics. Her style is inspirational with humor.