5 Ways Your Mind May Be Sabotaging You at Work

Work is often a tricky business. You may be following every rule and every age-old guideline, and yet not be doing as well as you would like. Every organization/industry has its own protocol and patterns, but a general idea of working smartly applies to all positions of work. Nowadays, we have young, enthusiastic, and highly educated professionals burning out quite early into their careers. The reason is that they are working hard, but not working smart. The thirst to prove themselves and the idea that their ideas cannot be challenged, often leads to this style of working. This implies that your own smartness of mind may be sabotaging you at work. Here is how:


Depending on culture, upbringing, and educational environment, each individual forms his/her own mindset regarding work ethics and standards. Many young professionals enter industries with pre-conceived ideas which render them inflexible when working on ground. Since the individual believes that his ideas are right, there is little or no scope for his/her attitude to adjust with the peers and bosses. This can hamper work for sure.


An exalted sense of self with regards to smartness of mind comes with the side effect of over confidence. Over-confidence never did anyone good. As a professional if you believe that your knowledge is superior to others (whether you admit it out loud or not), your work may be getting sabotaged by your own mind. Over confidence implies that you will believe only you are right in every situation, no matter what the ‘opposition’ may be stating. Believing only in your own self makes it nearly impossible for you to believe in any one else; this trait is not appreciated in any organization. Team work and micro- management are both essential qualities at work, which must not get hampered by your over confidence.



Believing in your smartness is not a bad thing. However, you must be aware of your own limitations, and accept them with no regrets. No individual is perfect from the very beginning. Time and experience make the professional grow and handle larger responsibilities. If you are under the impression that you are smart enough to handle more than what is expected from you, it may not always work in your favour. This impression leads to the temptation of multitask, and that may deviate your focus from priority tasks. The aim is to focus on the job at hand and not to grasp as many tasks as you can. It will eventually lead you to falter in your work. This in turn, will cause harm to either you or your efficacy/reputation at work.


A strong sense of personal accomplishment either in studies or at work can tempt you into taking shortcuts. When an individual is too sure of their skills or efficiency, he/she may end up glossing over finer details and believing that these minor aspects are below their standards. This implies that he/she ends up providing faulty/ sub- standard work. This is bound to make the seniors question your skills and knowledge, the very same ones that you were banking upon a little too much. You may have mastered a subject or a project, but paying attention to detail is always appreciated.


Type A personalities have an insistent need to be perfect at everything they do. They believe that their personal knowledge is sufficient for them to handle each and every aspect of the task. They also have this attitude of work which forces them to believe that they are nothing if not perfect. This perfectionist ideology at work is not a positive trait. While it is good to strive for improvement in every task at hand, striving for perfection in every task is not desirable, or even possible. If you are a perfectionist, you will never be satisfied with your work. Consequently, you may may keep delaying it past deadlines for lack of your own satisfaction. If this happens, you will burnout soon enough and sabotage your own career. A balanced approach thus, remains essential in all professional tasks.

It is important that a professional grasps the gravity of such possibilities to be better prepared at work. Smartness of work is desired, but smartness in work will not help. Take care that your own mind remains balanced in practical approaches, lest it be a factor in sabotaging you at work.




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