Big and scary: how to stop being afraid of your boss

 It's normal to be a little anxious before meeting your boss. But what if the level of anxiety goes off scale, and you worry so much that it prevents you from communicating with him?


Big and scary: how to stop being afraid of your boss

Do you feel anxious every time you approach the door of your boss's office? Postponing an important conversation with him over and over again? During a conversation and at meetings, do you get confused in words and mumble something inaudible? A few simple exercises and tips can help you cope with this dire condition.


Look fear in the eye

As a rule, people are so afraid of fear itself that in every possible way they avoid all thoughts about it. Take a closer look at your fear and try to consider it. Exercise and assess how much your anxiety has decreased. 


1. Distance

What are social fears? These are fears associated with others, with society. And they can be chained. If in any group there are carriers of such conditions as anxiety, lack of confidence, shyness, this can easily be "infected". For example, at your place of work it is customary to talk about your boss in a low voice. You yourself may not notice how you start to do the same, even if it was unusual for you before. 


What to do? Observe your condition for a few minutes. Others' worries and doubts should not become yours and spoil your life. Try to keep your distance, both physical and emotional. In an unpleasant situation that involves the spread of anxiety, pull back, do not talk to anyone, start listening to music on headphones. Try to keep your calm, do not let someone else's fear paralyze you. Breathing techniques can be used, they are great!  


2. Real estimate

The one who is higher in status is often seen by people as someone big and dangerous. Too significant. Of course, a person holding a leading position must be given credit - one way or another, but he achieved this, which means that he is smart, experienced, knows a lot, somehow achieved this position. What exactly are you afraid of: experience, knowledge? In addition, often leaders do not get to their posts for their real merits ... This is also worth remembering. The boss does not possess any supernormal abilities - he does not read minds and does not move objects with his eyes. He is an ordinary person with his own problems, worries and, possibly, fears.


What to do? Free up 30 minutes of your time, take sheets and a pen. Write down all the feelings you experience when your boss is around. The emphasis should be on negative emotions. Then ask yourself about each emotion, "Why am I feeling this?" Ask yourself about this until there is a reasonable explanation for all sensations. Analyze everything you admit to yourself. For example, you feel very uncomfortable when you talk to your boss about the work you have done. Why? Because you’re afraid it’s not done well enough. Is it really so?


If anxiety is inadequate to the situation, then what causes your fear? Fear of criticism? Self-doubt ? Or the constant unfounded nagging of the boss? Such questions and answers, perhaps, will lead you to the realization of what you did not want to admit to yourself, what you avoided. Thanks to this awareness, you can decide to change. But don't jump to conclusions and don't make ill-considered decisions. Our task for a start is to understand what is behind your excessive excitement.


3. Reality testing

Fear of a boss can be associated with childhood fears of parents. For a child, parents are always big and powerful. Someone was constantly punished, someone was shouted at, someone faced harsh criticism. When the boss scolds his subordinate, he does not even realize that he is instantly transported inside to childhood and begins to feel like a small child. The nagging and claims of the leader are also associated with his personal problems: perfectionism, taking out anger, or, again, strict upbringing. There can be many reasons. 


What to do? Take a piece of paper, photos from your family album, and a pen. Choose those photos in which your parents are still young enough, and you are not yet 5 years old, and lay the pictures in front of you. Take a close look at these photos. Remember how your parents communicated with you, think, with what intentions they did it? It is unlikely that they wanted to hurt you, they just did not know how to express their worries, desires and requests adequately.


Think about the past and your fears. About whether now, in your already adult life, situations arise in which there is a place for the same feelings. Realize what it is that guides you in moments of fear, try to leave the childish gaze and childish feelings in the past. And then look at others through the prism of adult experience. Is your boss 'behavior really the same as your parents' behavior? Think about how he is. What problems he solves, what fears and weaknesses he has, how he copes with stress. Try to understand that the boss is the same person. And you, and your parents, and your leader are ordinary people who can be afraid of something, and worry about something, and do something wrong. 


10 important clarifications

Very often, the fear of the boss lies in the exaggerated demands on oneself. Yes, sometimes it happens that a person is afraid of leadership for good reason - doing nothing at work, violating deadlines and deadlines, missing important tasks, the worker brings himself under the monastery. But if you understand that all this is not about you, then ask yourself, is there any real reason to be afraid of the leader's anger? Maybe it's all about your inner convictions? 


  • You don't have to try to make everything perfect. Nothing can be perfect... What is good for one is bad for another. Only through communication, clarification, reconciliation of two realities can you understand what your boss wants from you. And if you are afraid to talk to him, then how do you know what he expects from you? And then how to talk about your productive work?
  • If you have already changed several jobs due to the fact that you cannot build relationships with your superiors, then it is definitely not a matter of leadership. You are afraid of some people from the past, and you "recognize" these people in your boss. In the language of psychologists, you project. The boss can be absolutely good-natured and simple, butyou see him as a completely different person... Perhaps you need to work with a psychologist to sort out this situation.
  • If you come to your boss, and he begins to criticize not your work, but you personally, then the problem lies in himself... If he insults and becomes personal, you do not need to be afraid - you can either talk to him directly, try to set personal boundaries or go to where you will be treated with great respect. 
  • Prepare for a conversation with your boss in advance. If you have been working on a project and you know that your boss wants to talk about it, take the relevant documents.think about what is important to talk about... If you know that the boss will swear, and that you actually made a mistake, explain everything to him, admit that you were wrong. Do not leave the conversation and do not make excuses, speak with facts. 
  • Explain and report everything clearly, briefly and to the point... This will make it more convenient for the boss to work with you, because he will not be overloaded with unnecessary information. And you give the impression of a good employee.
  • Don't fool your boss, even if you are very afraid of some kind of reprimand or punishment. As soon as he realizes that you are dishonest with him, he will lose all trust in you. 
  • Try finish your work on time... Do not leave it half done, and even more so - not done at all. This will allow you to worry less before entering the boss's office. 
  • If you are afraid of your boss, not wanting to admit your fear, you will always blame him for all your mistakes and sins. Remember that yourfear needs to be accepted, take responsibility for it, you need to work with it.
  • It so happens that between the boss and some of his subordinates simply there is mutual antipathy... There is nothing you can do about it. Just go to work and do your thing, being careful not to meet your boss too often. In this case, both you and him will be more comfortable.
  • Remember that fear leads to frequent mistakes. The more you are afraid of the boss, the worse your attention, the more often you make mistakes and stumble from scratch.Don't waste your energy! 

And if you are standing in front of your boss's office right now and are experiencing intense fear, remember your achievements. About what good you did, how you helped your company, what positive qualities you have - both as an employee and as an ordinary person. All of this will help you reduce your fear and enter your boss's office with a much more confident attitude. 

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