Toxic Workplace Alert

Whenever I hang out with my friend Eric, I become increasingly convinced that his workplace is extremely toxic. He’d be the first to attest to this – certainly, that was the case last night, when he refused to shut about it over dinner.

Eric works for an academic publishing house, which you’d think would be a relatively mild-mannered environment. But apparently the stress within his department has mounted to the point that it’s finally started to affect him. He told me he’s been having sleep problems verging on insomnia, along with a general sense of anxiety around going to work.

Fortunately, he hasn’t gotten to the point of nervous breakdown being experienced by one of the administrative assistants, who is taking leave to address his deteriorating mental health. Honestly, if Eric’s tales are anything to go by, this has got to be one of the worst workplace culture scenarios on the Mornington Peninsula. Psychiatry referrals for the entire accounts department are on the cards, according to Eric.

My thoughts on the matter are that Eric should forget about waiting for the situation to change, and get some professional mental health support before his wellbeing is severely impacted. I’ve suggested quitting the job before, but Eric wasn’t having a bar of it due to the excellent career progression it promised. I can understand that, I suppose. But he needs to sort himself out, stat, by getting referred to a good psychology clinic. Mornington readers: do you have any recommendations?

For a while now, I’ve wondered if Eric was making mountains out of molehills, it being his way to embellish and exaggerate at every opportunity. But his appearance is starting to indicate that he’s actually being serious – he looked pretty physically unhealthy to me, which I can only attribute to excessive stress in light of his (generally exemplary) lifestyle habits. His whole demeanour just seems a lot more deflated than usual, which is a worry.

I’m going to be on his back about getting this sorted, one way or another – I want the old Eric back!