10 Signs Which Indicate a Professional Deformation

woman with face distorted as looking partially through glass

by Monica Quinn

Sooner or later, professional activity leaves a certain imprint on your personality. Your habitual patterns of behavior, character traits, way of communication, and even inner values ​​change. All these changes are the result of professional deformation.

Professional deformation worsens the quality of your life and prevents you from building healthy relationships with people around you. You begin to acquire behavior patterns typical of specialists in your field, speak in jargon and even look somewhat stereotyped.

Below are collected the main signs by which you can recognize a professional deformation in yourself.

1. Colleagues have become your best friends
Your social circle has narrowed to a collective and the people you work with suddenly become your best friends. And it’s not even because you spend most of your time with them. You suddenly began to feel that there is nothing to talk about with other people. In fact, you are just comfortable talking about work and realizing that they understand you perfectly. Meeting old friends has ceased to appeal to you, and instead of meeting with them at the bar on Fridays, you stay in the office to discuss the work with your colleagues.

2. All your interests are somehow related to your work
If before you were playing sports, learned to play the guitar, loved to spend evenings playing board games, now all your interests are somehow related to your work. You don’t waste time on other activities, considering them useless or uninteresting. You develop just in your profession. You consider taking master classes and conferences to be your hobby, you try to acquire skills that will improve the quality of your work, you get to know people who are specialists in your field. This is partly why you feel comfortable and fun only with your colleagues.

3. You have nothing to talk about except for your job
Given the two previous points, you have nothing to talk about except your work. But the problem is that listening to your monologues is extremely uninteresting for people of other professions. So you can feel lonely or misunderstood. In fact, it’s quite simple to notice that your professional deformation begins: if work is the first thing you start talking about when you meet your friends, then the process has started.

4. You perceive others as the object of your work
You advertise the services and products of the company you work for everywhere and to everyone. You tell your friends about discounts and promotions, ask them to share your contacts, and consider them as potential customers. You see a certain benefit and do your best to derive it from communication, even with family and friends.

5. You associate the concept of “success” exclusively with professional achievements
You begin to associate the concept of “success” exclusively with professional achievements. You aren’t interested in personal development, making large purchases like an apartment or a car, building relationships with loved ones, building a family, etc. Success for you means a new position, receiving an award, praise from your boss, and a high-quality work result. In one way or another, everything revolves around your profession, and you don’t try to prove yourself in something else.

6. You are unreasonably afraid that you will be fired
You begin to experience an unreasonable fear that your career is going to end, and soon you will definitely be fired. You are afraid that in an instant you will lose your job, you will be forced to leave your profession and lose your colleagues who have become your friends. There are no prerequisites for this: you have good indicators, your boss praises you, you don’t receive any bad comments, but the anxiety doesn’t disappear. You just understand that work has become your life, and without it, you can no longer imagine your existence.

7. You start to neglect your values
Another sign of professional deformation is a disregard for your own values, which form the basis of your personality. You become cynical and begin to deviate from your own standards of behavior to achieve greater efficiency at work. You extol the result of your work, believing that the process and the methods you use to improve your work efficiency are more important than your own values.

8. You speak professional slang even at non-working hours
Even in conversations with loved ones, you begin to use professional jargon – you use many terms that are incomprehensible to most people. You rarely think about the fact that a person may not understand what you are talking about. For you, these words have become commonplace, so you cannot separate your working speech from ordinary colloquial speech. People are unlikely to be interested in a person who talks only about work using unknown words like HOA audit, due diligence, comorbid, and others.

9. You don’t feel joy and happiness
You have lost the ability to rejoice and haven’t felt happy for a long time. Your life has turned into endless working days, and you seem to sincerely want to change something, but you have no idea how to do it. Therefore, all that remains for you is to continue to do your job at a high level, hoping that this will somehow improve the situation for the better.

10. You eliminate the expression of emotions at work in yourself and your colleagues
You perceive yourself and your colleagues as part of a single mechanism, the work of which is fully adjusted. As long as each of you is doing your job, there are no problems, and all the gears are turning in the right direction. You stop reacting emotionally to things that shock, frighten and upset most people if they are somehow related to your profession. You clearly understand that all this is only part of your job, and it should be treated with a cold mind.