If you are being bullied at work, ask yourself these four simple questions:
1. Is the serial bully fearful that I will expose his/her job or social incompentcies, am I considered by the bully to be a threat?
2. Have the actions of the serial bully (and cohorts) been reported to his/her superiors from more than one reliable source?
3. Am I often anxious, fearful or extremely stressed when the serial bully is around?
4. Am I fearful that the actions of the bully will, or have already had a negative effect on my health and/or the health of my co-workers?
If you have answered "yes" to all four of these questions, you are working under extreme negative stress, being created by a serial bully. If you cannot, or do not leave the work situation immediately you are facing the certainty of a stress breakdown! OR HAS IT ALREADY HAPPENED TO YOU? The human body cannot remain in a state of alarm, being hyper-vigilant and hyper-sensitive, with your "flight/fight mechanisims turned ON, for a prolonged time. More than one month, constitutes the medical/legal definition of too long.
Unlike a "mental breakdown", a stress breakdown or "stress meltdown", may manifest itself in one or many ways. First, and most easily diagnosed is anxiety leading to depression, with all it's complicating implications. Real physical illness is often next, because exposure to prolonged and sever stress reaps havoc on your immune system.(Three of the eleven people I worked with dropped dead of sudden heart attacks and two developed cancer.) Another potential effect of "stress meltdown" is a dependency on substances like drugs and alcohol, or uncontrolable compulsive behaviors, such as gambling or web surfing. Wait, there's more.
A stress breakdown will almost always make you more prone to accidents because your hyper-vigilance is directed toward the bullying rather than your driving or lawn, household, or workshop chores. And, it will most assuredly impact negatively on your personal relationships. An almost certain result is that you will have to force yourself to go to work and once there, you will barely be able to function in your job. All your creative energies will be sapped. Then, even years later, in decent work situations, you may suddenly find yourself unable to function because of the "flashback factor" which you may not even recognize as more than fleeting moments of unexplained anxiety that effect your work and/or work relationships.
It Is Vital, therefore that you understand that you and your bullied co-workers may be facing a imminate stress breakdown or may already be in the throws of one. This is truly a matter of Life and Death!
In diagnosing and treating stress breakdowns, the American Health Community, has pretty much "dropped the ball"! Without their awareness, satisfactory treatments cannot be developed or implimented. Likewise, without the proper diagnosis, legal providers are hard-pressed to present and prove personal injury cases, or to procure worker's compensation or permanent disability payments for those who are victims of this intentional personal injury.