Do Not Bring Your Personal Life To Work–StoryTime

Something I don’t do at work is talk a lot about my personal life. Why? I learned that messy co-workers can use that information against you. So don’t bring your personal life to work.

Don’t know what I mean? Let me share a story. 

The background

After I graduated from business college, I was hired as a sales associate at a local upscale clothing store. It was my first grown-up job, and I was super excited.  

For the first month, I floated from department to department. Just learning all the different departments and merchandise. Soon I ended up in the Juniors Department.

Overall, I enjoyed my time there. I enjoyed helping folks find what they needed. Though I adored my job, adjusting to meeting the public and working with my co-workers took me some time.

See, I’m a naturally shy person. So I’m a little reserved around people I don’t know, but once I get comfortable I’m okay. 

The Lesson

I have a few good guy friends that I have known for years. I told them where I worked, and they came by to visit. Of course, I stopped and talked with them.

Whenever my guy friends left, my nosy co-workers would ask who they were and what we talked about. Not thinking anything was wrong, I told them they were close friends and we were just talking about working here or gossiping about mutual friends. 

While working, my co-workers and I would chat about weekend plans, boyfriends, and fashion. During these chit-chats, I would talk about my personal life, like hanging out with friends and family. 

Somehow, some things about my personal life got back to my manager. How? I can only guess my co-workers told her. Awful part was, the information wasn’t true. Someone had told her that I was dating the guys that came by to see me.  

Now let me stress these guys were friends. There were no romantic feelings whatsoever. 

Due to the situation (customers hanging around and making my co-workers uneasy—one co-worker even felt my friends were making fun of her, which they weren’t), my manager gave me a verbal warning about having too many visitors.

What I learned

Since then, I have kept details of my personal life out of the workplace. I occasionally share that I’m married and a mom, but I keep anything that could be used against me, like what I do outside of work, to myself. I say just enough to be conversational.

The takeaway

After seeing all that had happened to me, I learned the lesson not to bring my personal life to work anymore. Now, I let my co-workers know what I want them to know about my life. That’s it. 

Just saying.

If you have any comments or stories you want to share about how your personal business got you into trouble at work, please feel free to leave them in the comments section.

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