Cynthia Madison 's Entries

2 blogs
  • 07 Jan 2020
    Most jobs imply some level of stress and we can all look back and remember days when we felt overwhelmed by the workload or anxious about how we come across professionally. There are few career options that can be described as relaxing.  But in recent years, more and more companies are looking for ways to squeeze every last drop of productivity out of their employees and finding corporate euphemisms to replace the word “exploitation”.   We’re “strongly encouraged” to be “agile” through our “power lunches” because it’s “crunch time” or our bosses will start “smart-sizing” the team and “optimize resources” so we could get “streamlined” into “rethinking our future”. What they’re doing is actually paying three employees to do the work of five and this sort of excessive demand leads to an unhealthy level of competition. If they feel under constant threat of unemployment, people’s flight or fight instinct kicks in which increases “workplace incivility” among colleagues.  A recent study published in the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology examines the link between workplace toxicity and signs of deteriorating mental health such as rumination, insomnia, anxiety and depression.  What Does Workplace Incivility Mean? This term refers to a pattern of low-intensity behaviours that are vague enough to be open to interpretation so that the offender cannot be accused of attempting to harm the target even if they're violating workplace norms for mutual respect and courtesy.  In our day to day lives we would call it passive aggressive behaviour. Some common examples are: Back-handed compliments – disguising criticism through compliments – “I didn’t expect you to get it done… Congratulations! See what happens when you make an effort?” or how about “you’re really professional for your age” Excluding the target from group activities such as going out to lunch or planning to meet at a bar after work Silent treatment Interrupting  Sarcastic remarks Asking for the target’s opinion and then ignoring it  Neglecting to give credit for collaborative work Giving “dirty” or hostile looks Making insinuating remarks related to the target’s professional competence Undermining the target’s credibility in front of others Public reprimands Sometimes, this kind of actions is just a way for employees to blow off some steam when they are unhappy with the workload and can’t find a way to express their frustrations to the managerial staff. Other times, it’s a way of reducing the productivity of the target in order to hurt their professional image in the eyes of their bosses and perhaps get them to quit. How Does a Toxic Work Environment Impact Productivity? Researchers Christine M. Pearson and Christine L. Porath gathered data from over 2,400 people across the United States and Canada and concluded that workplace incivility does, in fact, affect productivity. Not only that, but it also undermines organizational values and depletes resources.  Targets will waste work time worrying about various incidents and planning how to avoid or deal with future hostile interactions with the instigator, it reduces commitment to the company, 20% of persons interviewed declaring they intentionally reduced their work effort as a result, and 10% reduced the time spent at work.  Companies with high levels of incivility among members of the staff experience higher turnover rates, loss of productivity because employees will avoid going to work by calling in sick, lower quality and quantity of work and lack of confidence in the leadership. The good news is that a study published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology found that individuals who felt that their company was able to offer them emotional and social support reported higher job satisfaction and lower negative impact on their psychological well-being compared to those that didn’t. This suggests that the adverse effects of incivility can be buffered through feelings of organizational trust.  What About Mental Health? Well, a toxic work environment doesn’t impact only your emotional wellbeing but your overall health. So, let’s start by mentioning a weakened immune system, gastro-intestinal issues, high blood pressure and lower sex drive just to get them out of the way. These are just some of the most common ones since it depends on how healthy the individual was before starting to be affected by workplace stress. Plenty of people find themselves having to go to a Medical Centre and get a prescription just get them through the long days at the office.    When it comes to mental health, the first symptom is a reduction in the quality of sleep since the employee is ruminating over what happens during work hours and how to mitigate their conflicts which results in higher level of anxiety. After a time, the lack of sleep and chronic stress start to manifest as more serious medical conditions such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular problems and depression. Research has also linked toxic work environments with substance abuse.  What Can Employees Do to Protect Their Health? Coping Techniques. If you’re unfortunate enough to work in a toxic environment with high levels of incivility, there are some coping techniques which may assist you in mitigating some of the negative effects it has on your well-being.  The most important one is developing the ability to detach yourself psychologically from work, at least during your free time. You can measure how successful you are in this process by counting how many times you think about work while you’re trying to enjoy the rest of your day or your weekend. It should be as close to zero as possible.  Employees who improve their capacity to relax after work can sleep better and are more adept at coping with the stress associated with this kind of behaviour. We mentioned earlier that it’s a common strategy to become less engaged in the workplace which leads to a reduction in productivity for the company. That may be so, but at least it helps people avoid burnout. This sort of detachment can be achieved through planning positive distractions such as vacations, going out with friends and family, physical exercise and enjoyable hobbies.  The relaxation that comes with prioritizing work-life balance results in lower levels of exhaustion and fewer health complaints. If you find yourself unable to do that because you are forced to stay at the office beyond the designated hours, “until the work is done” you may want to consider looking for a more fulfilling job.  
    512 Posted by Cynthia Madison
  • Most jobs imply some level of stress and we can all look back and remember days when we felt overwhelmed by the workload or anxious about how we come across professionally. There are few career options that can be described as relaxing.  But in recent years, more and more companies are looking for ways to squeeze every last drop of productivity out of their employees and finding corporate euphemisms to replace the word “exploitation”.   We’re “strongly encouraged” to be “agile” through our “power lunches” because it’s “crunch time” or our bosses will start “smart-sizing” the team and “optimize resources” so we could get “streamlined” into “rethinking our future”. What they’re doing is actually paying three employees to do the work of five and this sort of excessive demand leads to an unhealthy level of competition. If they feel under constant threat of unemployment, people’s flight or fight instinct kicks in which increases “workplace incivility” among colleagues.  A recent study published in the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology examines the link between workplace toxicity and signs of deteriorating mental health such as rumination, insomnia, anxiety and depression.  What Does Workplace Incivility Mean? This term refers to a pattern of low-intensity behaviours that are vague enough to be open to interpretation so that the offender cannot be accused of attempting to harm the target even if they're violating workplace norms for mutual respect and courtesy.  In our day to day lives we would call it passive aggressive behaviour. Some common examples are: Back-handed compliments – disguising criticism through compliments – “I didn’t expect you to get it done… Congratulations! See what happens when you make an effort?” or how about “you’re really professional for your age” Excluding the target from group activities such as going out to lunch or planning to meet at a bar after work Silent treatment Interrupting  Sarcastic remarks Asking for the target’s opinion and then ignoring it  Neglecting to give credit for collaborative work Giving “dirty” or hostile looks Making insinuating remarks related to the target’s professional competence Undermining the target’s credibility in front of others Public reprimands Sometimes, this kind of actions is just a way for employees to blow off some steam when they are unhappy with the workload and can’t find a way to express their frustrations to the managerial staff. Other times, it’s a way of reducing the productivity of the target in order to hurt their professional image in the eyes of their bosses and perhaps get them to quit. How Does a Toxic Work Environment Impact Productivity? Researchers Christine M. Pearson and Christine L. Porath gathered data from over 2,400 people across the United States and Canada and concluded that workplace incivility does, in fact, affect productivity. Not only that, but it also undermines organizational values and depletes resources.  Targets will waste work time worrying about various incidents and planning how to avoid or deal with future hostile interactions with the instigator, it reduces commitment to the company, 20% of persons interviewed declaring they intentionally reduced their work effort as a result, and 10% reduced the time spent at work.  Companies with high levels of incivility among members of the staff experience higher turnover rates, loss of productivity because employees will avoid going to work by calling in sick, lower quality and quantity of work and lack of confidence in the leadership. The good news is that a study published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology found that individuals who felt that their company was able to offer them emotional and social support reported higher job satisfaction and lower negative impact on their psychological well-being compared to those that didn’t. This suggests that the adverse effects of incivility can be buffered through feelings of organizational trust.  What About Mental Health? Well, a toxic work environment doesn’t impact only your emotional wellbeing but your overall health. So, let’s start by mentioning a weakened immune system, gastro-intestinal issues, high blood pressure and lower sex drive just to get them out of the way. These are just some of the most common ones since it depends on how healthy the individual was before starting to be affected by workplace stress. Plenty of people find themselves having to go to a Medical Centre and get a prescription just get them through the long days at the office.    When it comes to mental health, the first symptom is a reduction in the quality of sleep since the employee is ruminating over what happens during work hours and how to mitigate their conflicts which results in higher level of anxiety. After a time, the lack of sleep and chronic stress start to manifest as more serious medical conditions such as obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular problems and depression. Research has also linked toxic work environments with substance abuse.  What Can Employees Do to Protect Their Health? Coping Techniques. If you’re unfortunate enough to work in a toxic environment with high levels of incivility, there are some coping techniques which may assist you in mitigating some of the negative effects it has on your well-being.  The most important one is developing the ability to detach yourself psychologically from work, at least during your free time. You can measure how successful you are in this process by counting how many times you think about work while you’re trying to enjoy the rest of your day or your weekend. It should be as close to zero as possible.  Employees who improve their capacity to relax after work can sleep better and are more adept at coping with the stress associated with this kind of behaviour. We mentioned earlier that it’s a common strategy to become less engaged in the workplace which leads to a reduction in productivity for the company. That may be so, but at least it helps people avoid burnout. This sort of detachment can be achieved through planning positive distractions such as vacations, going out with friends and family, physical exercise and enjoyable hobbies.  The relaxation that comes with prioritizing work-life balance results in lower levels of exhaustion and fewer health complaints. If you find yourself unable to do that because you are forced to stay at the office beyond the designated hours, “until the work is done” you may want to consider looking for a more fulfilling job.  
    Jan 07, 2020 512
  • 22 Nov 2019
    Do you spend a lot of time thinking about how you can make the world a better place and how to make a difference in people's lives?  Then you've probably already thought about choosing a career that gives you meaning and allows you to make a contribution. After a long day at work, you get a special sense of satisfaction knowing that you have made the world and people’s lives a little bit better and that you don’t work just for money and yourself. Teacher Education is one of the most important services society provides and it’s vital to maintaining to fast paced cultural progress we are used to as a species. A teacher’s role is to help guide children, to make them strong, brave and prepare them for the all the good and bad that comes with being an adult. Demand for highly skilled teachers has been on the rise and there's little chance for this trend to change in the future. If you're passionate about teaching, learning and sharing your experience with the younger generation with the intent of making a difference in a child's life, then this is the perfect career for you. People looking to take up teaching should be relatively outgoing, must be good listeners, have great problem-solving and organizational abilities along with effective communication skills so that they're able to convey information in such a way that it reaches the classroom and the students remain engaged and are able to remember what was said to them. Social Worker Social work is a noble pursuit that affords a wealth of possibilities to make positive changes in people's lives. One other advantage is that this occupation offers quite a wide range of paths to choose in terms of causes you want to involve yourself in. In the most basic terms, social workers help people overcome or come to grips with obstacles they’re facing in their day-to-day lives. Clinical social workers are also qualified to diagnose and treat mental health related challenges. There are several areas that you could move towards. You could specialize in child and family social work and then you’d be protecting vulnerable children and assisting families who are in need of help and guidance. As a school social worker, you’d be working with teachers, parents and school administrator to determine what changes would have to be made to increase academic performance for students that are dealing with issues such as bullying, frequent absences, self-destructive tendencies or lack of resources and support. When it comes to working in the mental health sector, you’d be making sure that the individuals coping with mental illnesses or addictions placed under your care have access to all the resources that could contribute to the effectiveness of the treatment they’re undergoing. Another important aspect of social work is advocacy. Social workers often raise awareness on the issues brought to their attention through their work. Health Care Sector Everybody needs a doctor at some point. Either for a minor flu or major surgery, we all go see a physician eventually. We rarely think about how valuable doctors are to our lives. They work diligently to improve to raise health standards for both humans and animals. Many medical professionals from around the world volunteer to provide medical services to people who can’t afford it or are located in regions where they’re unavailable. It’s thanks to the relentless efforts of these doctors and researchers that the medical field has reached such a high point of advancement. A host of new medications and therapies are being developed that contribute to treatment adherence and effectiveness. This is why it's considered such a noble profession. This field also has the advantage of offering many spheres of activity that you could specialize in. Maybe you’d rather be a nurse and offer home care to the elderly.   Or maybe you feel more drawn to the rush that an EMT or paramedic experiences. As an FDNY EMT or paramedic you’d be able to save countless lives, especially since there’s currently a shortage. This shortage means that when people call 911, the ambulance can’t arrive as soon as it should and therefore, they don’t get medical attention as quickly as they should. Unfortunately, when it comes to emergencies every second counts. Psychotherapist or Counselor Even if you haven’t gone yourself, chances are that you know a couple of people who have undergone weekly session of psychotherapy. As social stigma around metal health has reduced over the past few years, an increasing number of people are finding the courage to seek out professional help to get them through hard times. Often, the term "therapist" is used in a broader sense to include a wide range of practitioners who can provide clients with mental health care services. As an example, both a clinical psychologist and a licensed professional counselor handle mental health issues in various settings. Here you can also choose to specialize into a particular subfield. You can become a substance abuse therapist and help people who are dealing with addictions or you can help couples resolve their issues and improve they way they communicate with one another as a marriage and family therapist. You might prefer to work with kids in a school setting as a licensed school psychologist. Yet another career choice could be to train as a rehabilitation therapist. Then you’d be able to offer your clients a combination of mental health as well as physical health services. This work mainly involves helping people with disabilities and injuries make the most of their lives. These are just some of the most common examples but there are many more forms of practice you can explore. If you strive to become a therapist, earning a bachelor's degree in psychology could be your first step. However, it’s also possible to be admitted into a training program if you have an undergraduate degree in another field as long as you can make up for the difference in coursework. Undergraduates with degrees in sociology, education and health sciences often become therapists.  
    677 Posted by Cynthia Madison
  • Do you spend a lot of time thinking about how you can make the world a better place and how to make a difference in people's lives?  Then you've probably already thought about choosing a career that gives you meaning and allows you to make a contribution. After a long day at work, you get a special sense of satisfaction knowing that you have made the world and people’s lives a little bit better and that you don’t work just for money and yourself. Teacher Education is one of the most important services society provides and it’s vital to maintaining to fast paced cultural progress we are used to as a species. A teacher’s role is to help guide children, to make them strong, brave and prepare them for the all the good and bad that comes with being an adult. Demand for highly skilled teachers has been on the rise and there's little chance for this trend to change in the future. If you're passionate about teaching, learning and sharing your experience with the younger generation with the intent of making a difference in a child's life, then this is the perfect career for you. People looking to take up teaching should be relatively outgoing, must be good listeners, have great problem-solving and organizational abilities along with effective communication skills so that they're able to convey information in such a way that it reaches the classroom and the students remain engaged and are able to remember what was said to them. Social Worker Social work is a noble pursuit that affords a wealth of possibilities to make positive changes in people's lives. One other advantage is that this occupation offers quite a wide range of paths to choose in terms of causes you want to involve yourself in. In the most basic terms, social workers help people overcome or come to grips with obstacles they’re facing in their day-to-day lives. Clinical social workers are also qualified to diagnose and treat mental health related challenges. There are several areas that you could move towards. You could specialize in child and family social work and then you’d be protecting vulnerable children and assisting families who are in need of help and guidance. As a school social worker, you’d be working with teachers, parents and school administrator to determine what changes would have to be made to increase academic performance for students that are dealing with issues such as bullying, frequent absences, self-destructive tendencies or lack of resources and support. When it comes to working in the mental health sector, you’d be making sure that the individuals coping with mental illnesses or addictions placed under your care have access to all the resources that could contribute to the effectiveness of the treatment they’re undergoing. Another important aspect of social work is advocacy. Social workers often raise awareness on the issues brought to their attention through their work. Health Care Sector Everybody needs a doctor at some point. Either for a minor flu or major surgery, we all go see a physician eventually. We rarely think about how valuable doctors are to our lives. They work diligently to improve to raise health standards for both humans and animals. Many medical professionals from around the world volunteer to provide medical services to people who can’t afford it or are located in regions where they’re unavailable. It’s thanks to the relentless efforts of these doctors and researchers that the medical field has reached such a high point of advancement. A host of new medications and therapies are being developed that contribute to treatment adherence and effectiveness. This is why it's considered such a noble profession. This field also has the advantage of offering many spheres of activity that you could specialize in. Maybe you’d rather be a nurse and offer home care to the elderly.   Or maybe you feel more drawn to the rush that an EMT or paramedic experiences. As an FDNY EMT or paramedic you’d be able to save countless lives, especially since there’s currently a shortage. This shortage means that when people call 911, the ambulance can’t arrive as soon as it should and therefore, they don’t get medical attention as quickly as they should. Unfortunately, when it comes to emergencies every second counts. Psychotherapist or Counselor Even if you haven’t gone yourself, chances are that you know a couple of people who have undergone weekly session of psychotherapy. As social stigma around metal health has reduced over the past few years, an increasing number of people are finding the courage to seek out professional help to get them through hard times. Often, the term "therapist" is used in a broader sense to include a wide range of practitioners who can provide clients with mental health care services. As an example, both a clinical psychologist and a licensed professional counselor handle mental health issues in various settings. Here you can also choose to specialize into a particular subfield. You can become a substance abuse therapist and help people who are dealing with addictions or you can help couples resolve their issues and improve they way they communicate with one another as a marriage and family therapist. You might prefer to work with kids in a school setting as a licensed school psychologist. Yet another career choice could be to train as a rehabilitation therapist. Then you’d be able to offer your clients a combination of mental health as well as physical health services. This work mainly involves helping people with disabilities and injuries make the most of their lives. These are just some of the most common examples but there are many more forms of practice you can explore. If you strive to become a therapist, earning a bachelor's degree in psychology could be your first step. However, it’s also possible to be admitted into a training program if you have an undergraduate degree in another field as long as you can make up for the difference in coursework. Undergraduates with degrees in sociology, education and health sciences often become therapists.  
    Nov 22, 2019 677