If you’re not being taken seriously at work, ditch these 14 habits now

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When you put in a solid chunk of your time at your job, you at least want to be respected by those you work with

If you find that you’re not being taken seriously at work, however, then you’re probably wondering why. 

What did you do (or not do) that is leading to you not being taken seriously on the job?

Here’s a look at some key habits to ditch if you find that you’re just not being taken seriously on a professional level… 

1) Procrastinating

If you’re a bit of a procrastinator it can definitely be one of the reasons you’re not taken seriously at work

Showing up late, turning in assignments at the last minute or late and generally being ineffective and slow are all common parts of procrastinating. 

Unlike high school where you can sometimes find other shortcuts to getting the work done or copying answers, work is a little trickier!

Eventually not carrying your own weight starts to cause others to have to take on more than their fair share, and they resent you accordingly. 

2) Writing overly long emails

Writing overly long emails is another of those things that leads to you being overlooked at work. 

The truth is that apart from a select few people or topics, most of us don’t really like reading emails all that much. 

That’s part of why so many people’s jobs involve them reading email, and why it’s incumbent on you to try to keep your emails brief and succinct. 

Writing clear and short emails is truly a lifesaver and it will gain you respect and goodwill wherever you work (while also saving you time!) 

3) Neglecting your appearance or hygiene

Whether or not your workplace has a dress code, showing up sloppy and unkempt is one of those things that starts to lose you respect. 

You may barely even be aware of it, and I know exactly how that is:

You get out the door or hop on that Zoom meeting at the last possible second and your clothes are all wrinkled and your hair looks like Nikola Tesla just did an electrical experiment on it. 

We’ve all been there. 

But when it becomes a habit of getting up late and neglecting our appearance at work (and hygienic items like skin care, brushing teeth and wearing deodorant), it can definitely take a toll. 

4) Being overly messy and disorganized 

In terms of your work area itself, the habit of being messy and disorganized can also lose you a lot of respect.

If you’re a carpenter then that means keeping your work truck organized and not leaving tools lying around…

If you’re a lawyer it means keeping your file system organized and making the filing system clear to other people looking through it…

If you’re working from home then it means keeping your computer area free of food containers and random scattered papers and “call X” type messages around your work station. 

Keep it clean, folks! 

5) Blurring work and friend boundaries

Another big issue that can lead to losing respect at work is blurring work and friend boundaries. 

This is easy to do and it’s not always a bad thing. 

Sometimes you get into business with a friend, and sometimes a person you work with also becomes a personal friend. 

But let’s admit it:

This can be problematic and go wrong, especially when it gets into dating or becoming personally close in a way where you confide in each other a lot. 

Now your friend is missing work after telling you he has a problem with alcohol, or you’re not answering work assignments after opening up to your boss that you’re depressed. 

The result? An overall lessening of respect… 

6) Complaining about your personal life at work

On a related note, it’s usually best not to complain about your personal life at work or to coworkers. 

I’ve done it and I understand the fact that many of us don’t have as many friends these days and sometimes turn to our colleagues almost like old friends. 

I get that, but the trouble here is that you could reduce your appearance of professionalism or capability in the eyes of colleagues. 

If you sound off about how depressed your divorce is making you, it’s no wonder if your boss thinks twice before giving you another promotion and raise… 

7) Spending work time reading and sending jokes

Joking at work can be a great way to increase productivity and relax a little. 

But if you are one of those folks who’s always sending around chain joke emails or going on extended hilarious rants, you are likely to lose a bit of respect. 

I’m not saying you’re not funny, and I think humor in the workplace is a great idea. 

But too much of it and you risk becoming the office clown. 

8) Bragging about yourself even in a joking way

When you do something great or want your talents to be known, you may mention an achievement. 

Now and then it’s worth noting what you’ve done or who you are for the sake of what you’re actually working on or clients and building business relationships. 

But apart from necessity, this can often come across as bragging and is better to avoid. 

It’s easy for coworkers to become resentful or to feel that you’re full of yourself, even if that’s not the case. 

9) Being perceived as taking credit you didn’t earn

If you have a habit for liking the spotlight, you may be perceived as taking credit you didn’t earn.

Whether or not it’s merited, the fact that you seem to get a lot of the glory may lead some to see you as wanting all the spotlight for yourself. 

The antidote to this is simple and involves giving as much recognition and praise to colleagues as possible. 

10) Ditching projects and assignments halfway

Consistency is the definite mark of a successful and well-liked employee. 

When projects are ditched partway, even projects for which you weren’t fully responsible, it can leave a bad taste in the wake…

You may begin to be seen as somebody who doesn’t see things through.

Even if that reputation is wholly undeserved, it can often be the byproduct of having too much on your plate without completing it.

11) Excessively delegating work onto others 

Delegating tasks and responsibilities can be essential in the workplace. 

But if you do so too much, you might not be taken very seriously and could come to be seen as slacking or shirking your duties. 

How much delegating is too much is really somewhat a matter of opinion.

But be sure that you can honestly say you’re doing your fair share. 

12) Gossipping or trash talking your boss or colleagues

We don’t always have the privilege of liking those we work with, and that’s fine. 

But taking behind anyone’s back, even if it’s just for giggles or a bit of harmless gossip, is sure to earn you a less-than-stellar reputation. 

Sooner or later, being the kind of person who spreads rumors and engages in them tends to catch up to you in harmful ways and wreck your reputation around work. 

13) Taking overly long breaks 

We all need a break now and then, but if you get criticized at work for taking too many breaks there could be something to it. 

In past jobs where I’ve found myself taking too many breaks there was often more to it than just a lackluster work ethic:

When I got to the bottom of it I found I just wasn’t very interested in the work I was doing.

So take a look at whether that’s the case. And if it’s not and you’re just plain too accustomed to taking long breaks, do your best to reduce their length and frequency.

14) Filing frivolous complaints and requests

The more you rock the boat without a good reason, the more people tend to get annoyed when it comes to the workplace. 

If you’re a highly sensitive person (HSP) or simply find many things about your workplace hard to deal with, it’s best to find a coping mechanism other than reporting them.

Complaining a lot to superiors and HR tends to get others to see you as a “troublemaker” even if the label really isn’t deserved. 

Building better habits at work

Building better habits at work will definitely help raise the level of respect you get. 

Whether you work at an office, job site, shop or even around home, having healthier habits will raise everyone’s opinion of you. 

Best of all, it will also lead to you having more respect for yourself!

Paul Brian

Paul R. Brian is a freelance journalist and writer who has reported from around the world, focusing on religion, culture and geopolitics. Follow him on www.twitter.com/paulrbrian and visit his website at www.paulrbrian.com

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