You spend most of your day at your workplace, and you end up spending a lot of time with your colleagues. So, it’s natural to find a potential partner there! Workplace romances may be frowned upon but they happen more than you think. While it can be exciting, sometimes workplace relationships can turn out to be a disaster. Even though you keep your romance under wraps, it does have a direct effect on your professional and personal life, especially when a couple breaks up.
Studies have shown that the workplace environment plays an important role when it comes to your mental health. Dr Krithishree Somanna, Consultant Psychiatry, KMC Hospital, Mangalore, says that relationship break-ups at work can even lead to depression. Read on to understand the link.
How can work romance lead to depression?
Despite stringent rules, the familiarity with intellectual proximity among colleagues provides a space for emotional intimacy to flourish into a romantic relationship. However, it involves certain inevitable risks, avers Dr Somanna. For instance, if your partner is also your teammate, it becomes difficult to take up a few decisions which can hurt your partner’s sentiments. Your professionalism can be questioned based on the preferences shown or the success of the partner is judged if they happen to have a relationship with someone higher up in the organisation.
As per the expert, the worst consequences occur when the relationship does not work. However, not every relationship breakup leads to depression. Irrespective of the time period of the relationship, the meaning you ascribed to the relationship or how things ended matters a lot to create such emotional turmoil. “The sadness following the breakup can turn into clinical depression if it doesn’t go away after two weeks. A breakup also leads to feelings of rejection, low self-esteem, and confidence level, reduced interest in activities, worthlessness, fatigue and lack of energy, thoughts of death, and suicide,” says Dr Somanna.
How to cope with office breakup?
It is vital to take some time to grieve the loss as you may experience a mixed set of emotions such as denial, anger, bargaining, sadness, and regret. There are some things you need to keep in mind to deal with these feelings which can even lead to depression. You should prioritise yourself after a breakup, and follow these coping strategies that might help you, suggested by the psychiatrist:
1. Strengthen your social support
Surround yourself with people who support you emotionally as it can help cope with these feelings of resentment. You should steer clear of people who criticise or make you feel bad about yourself. The more you surround yourself with positive people, the better it is for you.
2. Don’t stalk your ex
After a breakup, many thoughts like “Has he/she moved on?” “Are they missing me,” etc. can cross your mind and you end up stalking your ex. Try not to do it! It is best to avoid your ex or stalk them, including on your social media.
3. Set boundaries
Sometimes, our thought can be too overpowering for us to control, but setting some boundaries for ourselves might be able to help. Control the ruminating thoughts and how much they impact you by setting some boundaries.
4. Focus on yourself
Now that you have spent oodles of energy on your relationship, it’s time to focus that energy on yourself. Work on building the pieces by working on your confidence, self-esteem, and more. Take up a new hobby, work out – whatever floats your boat.
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5. Don’t turn to alcohol or any substance
Drastic changes in personal life can make people do irrational things – something they had never done before! No matter how sad you are, don’t make alcohol or any other substance your weapon to survive through this. It’s going to do more than good.
6. Find a purpose in life
Did you have a different purpose in life before this person came along? If yes, focus on it. If not, it’s time to find one so that you are preoccupied with what you want from life. It will give you a sense of direction and stability, which in turn can help you live a happy and healthy life.
An end of something could be the beginning of something good that helps you become a better person. So, don’t let anything crumble your self-worth because sometimes change is good!