Working in a toxic environment as a foundation doctor can have negative impacts on your mental and physical health, as well as your professional development. Here are some strategies to address working in a toxic environment:
- Take care of yourself: It is important to prioritise your mental and physical health when working in a toxic environment. Make sure you are getting enough sleep, eating healthy, and taking breaks when needed.
- Set boundaries: It is important to set boundaries with toxic colleagues or situations. This can mean limiting your interactions with them, have another person with you when you are conversing with them or if you’re practically able to communicate through email.
- Seek support: Seek support from colleagues, friends, or family members who can provide you with emotional support and guidance. You can also reach out to your Foundation Programme Tutor.
- Address the issue: If you feel comfortable, address the toxic behaviour or situation directly with the person involved. Use “I” statements and be specific about the behaviour that is causing issues.
- Document incidents: Document any incidents or behaviours that contribute to the toxicity in your workplace. This can help you to build a case and provide evidence to support any formal complaints or actions.
- Seek guidance from superiors: If the toxic behaviour or situation is ongoing and serious, it is important to seek guidance from your superiors, programme tutors or HR department. They can help you to navigate the situation and address the issue effectively.
It is important to prioritise your mental and physical health when working in a toxic environment. By taking care of yourself, setting boundaries, seeking support, addressing the issue, documenting incidents, and seeking guidance from superiors, you can better address working in a toxic environment as a foundation doctor.