How Much of Your Personal Life You Should Share at Work


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How much is too much when it comes to sharing personal details at work? Research shows that employees are happier and more satisfied at work when they feel they can be themselves. According to one study, when people feel like they have to hide their true identity at work, they may have less job satisfaction and be more likely to quit.

But there’s a fine line between being open and authentic and oversharing at the office. And it’s possible to share just enough about yourself so you feel true to who you are without revealing your deepest secrets. These tips can help you share some personal details without crossing that line.

  • Allow the relationship to unfold - Trust gets built up over time and you can’t force it to happen faster. Sharing too much too soon can actually derail a relationship - even with a coworker - and researcher Brené Brown calls that process floodlighting. So try to be patient and selective about what you share and who you share it with because you can always share more, but you can’t share less.
  • Consider the relationship type - The people closest to you know the most about you, but it’s completely natural for some relationships to be more superficial. And just because others feel comfortable enough to reveal personal details to you doesn’t mean you have to reciprocate right away.
  • Think about the status of your career - Remember that everything you tell someone leaves an impression, even the throw-away statements you don’t consider memorable. You also have to consider that what you say may be repeated to others at work, possibly even your boss.
  • Know that some topics are “off limits” - The bottom line is that some things are just better left unsaid in a work setting. This includes politics and baseless gossip. And some people may consider money, relationship issues and health challenges inappropriate things to discuss with a coworker as well, so proceed with caution.

SOURCE: Fast Company


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