Anxiety in the Workplace

Addressing anxiety in the workplace (or in any setting) is about learning to have some emotional distance from what we perceive as being the issue(s). One way to create emotional distance is to process the thoughts and feelings with a safe and trusting person. This helps create the emotional distance needed to get clarity on how to respond in the best manner.

Family Systems Theory suggests that we develop a healthy self-differentiation. This means that we grow in our ability to…

“…be close to an emotionally important other while neither being dependent on gaining the other’s acceptance and approval nor fearing the other’s disapproval, rejection, or criticism of how we are. It is also being comfortable with the differences in the other person, particularly in times of higher anxiety, and not letting those differences cause emotional distance on our part. It means not needing to change the other to meet our expectations, or change ourselves to meet the other’s, in order to be close.”

Ronald W. Richardson

We all long to be accepted, valued, and dignified. As we grow in our own differentiation, we find that we can stay non-reactive (becoming anxious and acting out) as we seek perspective and the best possible recourse.

Find someone who is skilled in listening to help you process your anxious thoughts/feelings and get some perspective for how best to respond. An onsite corporate chaplain can assist employees with developing self-differentiation.