PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Work rage, office rage, or desk rage — you know, when things are going so bad at work that someone goes a bit crazy — hitting things, tossing things — sometimes even to the point of physical violence.
In most cases, the rage doesn’t go that far, but it can.
“I’ve seen things get thrown around sometimes, some people just walk out and quit. It’s a range of things. Some people just get really quiet,” says Jessica Brownlee of Brentwood.
A recent British study finds that 51 percent of workers experience work rage.
“It makes me think the other 49 percent are actually lying,” Allegheny Health Network psychologist, Dr. Greg Getz, told KDKA money editor Jon Delano on Tuesday.
Getz says most of us get angry in the work place at some point — for lots of reasons.
“Things that are going on at home can affect people being angry at work. Things that happen at work they might not be happy with, including co-workers doing things or behaviors that make them upset, bosses asking them to do tasks that they may not feel comfortable doing, or not doing well, or not getting gratitude,” added Getz.
Technology snafus — computers that go down or printers that won’t print — trigger some.
“Stupid things that they really don’t need to get angry about, but we all have short fuses sometime,” says Thomas Hilliard of Zelienople.
And it cuts across all professions — including the military.
“I’ve seen commanders hit the desk, sling things across the top of the desk, get enraged, and kick people out of their office,” notes Ramona Bellard, who recently retired from Ft. Hood, Texas.
The British survey, commissioned by Old Jamaica Ginger Beer, found that 64 percent of workers try to ignore the rage, but at least one out of 10 get into an argument with the rager.
What sets them off? Thirty-three percent say their colleagues, 25 percent say non-working technology, and 20 percent say the boss.
Chances are we’ve all had situations where we’ve felt like yelling and screaming at work. But it is unprofessional — and usually doesn’t get us anywhere.
Psychologists say there are better ways for us to cope.
“Taking a moment to calm yourself down,” suggests Dr. Getz. “If you don’t have your own workspace, go for a walk. Just take a few deep breaths and try to keep yourself in check.”
Good advice but not always easy to follow.