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Is venting at work a good idea?

Learning to manage stress will benefit general well-being

Current psychological studies show that venting is healthy, after all, it is a human defense mechanism that helps reduce stress levels. The problem is that sometimes trying to healthily vent can turn into a spiral of toxic negativity.

Venting is not the same as complaining

The first thing to understand is what venting really is and where the line of becoming toxic is marked. Letting off steam is different from complaining for various reasons, most clearly defined as a brief moment of release where you try to get your pent-up frustration out, understanding that the venting is temporary and that there are solutions. Venting allows you to get rid of the negative burden and return to daily activities feeling a little better than before.

An important detail to consider is that venting is a two-stage process and it is not personal, it involves one person who needs to vent and another person who listens and understands. Among co-workers, they can support each other through conversations where solutions are offered. On the other hand, complaining is a solitary activity and one that ends in a wave of negativity that affects anyone who listens.



Benefits of venting at work and about work

A healthy work environment is also a space where employees feel free to calmly vent from stressful day-to-day situations, feeling comfortable expressing what worries them is a simple and effective way to increase productivity.

The most common reasons employees vent are:

- Office policies.

- Communication between teams.

- Coworker performance.

- Personal performance.

- Customer satisfaction.

- Work schedules.

- Company culture and performance.



Learn to vent healthily

Multiple surveys conducted throughout the United States have shown that it is an inescapable fact that employees vent to co-workers. While most employees admit to venting to each other, a large proportion also vents by talking to their manager or assigned superior. A minority do so by going directly to Human Resources.

And although it may be thought that stress is only experienced directly in the offices, the current reality is that a large part of the workforce also needs to vent working from home. The best way to manage stress and/or dissatisfaction in the work area is by offering workers adequate measures to be able to vent freely.