You do NOT have to like her, but you DO have to work with her.

You Do Have to Work with Her

We’ve all had them – those people at work or in class that we cannot stand. It doesn’t matter which ideas you pitch in a meeting or how you propose to tackle a group project, she always knows better. Maybe it’s that she’s incredibly negative about everything, from the cleanliness of the ladies’ room to the way Executive Management conducts itself in meetings. She’s always has something to say.

There was a myth when we were growing up that someday everyone would get along. Someday, when we reached adulthood, everyone would be mature, honest, open-minded, well-informed, and great at communicating with one another. In reality, we’re all still human, so we act on our insecurities, fear our competition, and really want to fit in with our peers.

Sometimes these very human qualities lead us to bad-mouth the the Brown Noser in Cubicle #47 or snicker when Disorganized Debbie comes out of the bathroom with toilet paper stuck to her shoe instead of pointing it out and saving her from embarrassment. Gentle Reminder: If you want mature, open-minded communication in your life, it should probably start with you.

You do not have to like the way others in your office dress or talk or chew with their mouths open. You do, however, have to act like the professional you claim to be are. Treat everyone’s ideas and opinions with the respect they deserve. Refuse to participate in office gossip that ultimately makes you look like a bee-yatch and could come back to bite you when you mess up at something (and its only a matter time, my dear human). You do not have to befriend, or even like, your coworkers in order to treat them professionally and respectfully at work. 

This is certainly not a new concept, so I won’t pretend to be enlightening anyone. I just think it’s okay for us to be young professionals and young professionals. Middle school drama is so 2003.

The next time a coworker is really busting your nut, keep cool and remind yourself, “I do NOT have to like her.” It’s a freeing concept, really. Also keep in mind that your personal opinion of someone, for better or for worse, has absolutely no bearing on how you should treat them as a coworker, a peer, and a professional.

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