If you’re reading this right now, that means that you have already filed your resignation and left that job that has been turning your days into a joyless routine. First off, you deserve to be congratulated. It takes a lot of effort to leave a routine, no matter how hard it is.
But after leaving, there must be one question that is now keeping you up at night: what now? A toxic workplace is emotionally and mentally draining, so recovery is not an instant process. This is only your first step towards a new beginning!
Now that you’ve got yourself some downtime, this is a good time to reflect and regain the confidence that you struggled to keep in that previous job.
Five Ways to Help Yourself Recover from a Toxic Job
After you leave your workplace, the emotions are often hard to manage. There is a mix of relief about finally being free, sadness about the friends you will leave behind, and fear of the future. These are some simple steps to find clarity in all of it.
1. Give yourself a well-deserved break
Not everyone has the luxury of taking a break, but if you do, make great use of it and rest up as much as you can. This can be your time to rediscover the things you enjoy which may have taken a backseat due to your hectic schedule at work, or to simply do fun things for yourself.
A suggestion? Go out on a date and have a great time. This allows you to get out of your head and enjoy the company of another person. You can even make it more interesting by signing up for a matchmaking service to go on dates especially chosen for you. Who knows? You could even find the one!
Aside from dating, are there passion projects that you had to shelf to prioritize work? Now is a great time to pick them up again and find joy in your passions and hobbies.
Horrible jobs often leave you feeling drained of the excitement in life, so this is a great opportunity to remember that feeling again.
2. Take time to process your emotions
It often feels much better to ignore those negative feelings at the moment. However, that will not do you any good in the long run. At some point the dam will spill and you will be unable to hold it all in if you don’t process your experience.
Grab a pen and paper and sit down to write down all the false ideas you may have begun believing while in your old workplace. This is a hard task, but when you lay them all out, it becomes easier to realize where they stemmed from. When you can pinpoint the source, it becomes easier to let go, too.
Should you need professional assistance, do not hesitate to reach out for it. Therapy could be a wonderful experience to overcome what you may be going through.
3. Spend time with friends, including workplace friends
You are not meant to walk this journey alone! Confide in friends you can trust and accept help from your support system. A day out to hang out with friends is also a great way to get you more energized to try new things and begin again.
Do you have friends and mentors back in your previous job? Don’t cut ties with them, either. Keep in touch with the people with whom you have walked the difficult road of that toxic work environment.
If you have mentors you respect back in your previous workplace, you can maintain your professional relationship with them. These people whose career decisions and wisdom you trust and you have kept a good relationship with, they can also act as future references for when it comes time for you to look for a new job. Your mentors can also provide helpful advice for all your questions about moving forward.
5. Lay out your next steps
Getting out of a job with a bad manager is one thing and allowing yourself time to recover is another. Once you have taken these steps to regain your bearings and feel more confident in yourself, it is time to make plans for what’s next.
This may just be the scariest part of this whole process, but it can also be the most exciting, if you let it. A blank slate is a wonderful place to begin because the possibilities are endless.
There is a whole new adventure that awaits you, especially now that you are armed with the knowledge that your job does not define you.