Emotional neediness and fragility in the workplace
As with almost every relationship, one person comes with a preconceived picture or bias while the other could be open- minded, you know the go-with-the-vibe attitude. Sometimes it’s a good mesh, the kind of opposite attract spiel every romcom is made of, and most times, it’s a disaster from the first date.
I know it sucks. This isn’t the opener I was going for but imagine watching a guy spilling his heart out to a girl, going on about how he won’t survive without breathing the same air, and as soon as she gets into her car, he’s at the door, begging her not to leave. Even goes as far as running after her, and screaming, “I need you, please I need you” at the top of his lungs as she drives off. Makes good TV, right? But a pretty sad one if you consider that’s how most of us are at work.
It’s been proven that being vulnerable at work pays but it shouldn’t be at the expense of selling your personhood for pittance. And I daresay that most people don’t even know they have handed over their rights on a platter of servitude.
I could also argue that being emotionally invested in work isn’t necessarily a bad thing; it shows responsibility, and accountability. But as soon as you start looking for reassurance, asking for feedback constantly, or just showing up at your boss’ desk every other second to chat, you’re already dancing around the periphery of being labelled needy, and having a “fragile, handle with care” sticker stuck to your forehead.
Simply put, emotional neediness reeks of insecurity, and fear. You handle the fragility of your job security with so much care because you fear you might never recover if you lose it. And God forbid it breaks anytime soon. Since individuality is a foreign concept, you give someone else the power to define your reality, and you’re comfortable living with that definition.
Now that I’ve gotten you to self-evaluate, and I do hope you do, I’ll leave you with this small piece of advice. Almost everyone has a tip for managing expectations in relationships. If you ask me, I’ll say this: don’t get too attached to a company or a person. Know your place in the organizational structure, and let your mission, purpose be bigger than playing safe. When push comes to shove and you’re tossed out, you don’t want to be that guy from the movie screaming, “I need you. Please take me back”.