How to remove a toxic work environment?

How to remove a toxic work environment?

Intrapersonal education is the key to business success and employee engagement. Let’s look at what happens when people fail to have good intrapersonal skills?

Our inner processes trigger reactivity and this reactivity is what leads to work-related interpersonal conflicts. As we have noticed ‘toxic’ relations at work environment are getting bigger as employees fail to perform under pressure and thus either experience mental health problems or blame others instead of taking real personal responsibility.

What is the number one skill that we often still lack in workplaces?

It is listening to others, as only 10% of us actually are able to listen effectively. Different studies have noted that this is only a part of the problem as we remember roughly 50% of what was immediately said. Let's observe what is listening all about.


Most of the so-called ‘toxic workplace’ problems and business disputes can be avoided by making employees and partners feel heard and understood. That is one reason why listening is one of the most critical leadership and teamwork skill.

As our founder, Dr. Helena Lass wrote in HR Magazine: “Studies have demonstrated that 45% of the time we distract ourselves by self-interruption through unintentional listening to thoughts and automatic emotional reactions. Factor in loud noises, past memories, future fantasies, colours, and objects, and it’s therefore hardly a big surprise to learn that our minds spend almost 50% of the time wandering. When you are occupied with your own thoughts and emotional reactions, you are not fully present in listening to the person talking to you. The key is to notice that your attention has wandered off and to re-establish the connection with the person speaking as often as needed.” To do that you have to understand what awareness – the main component of attention, and the most basic intrapersonal skill – actually is and how to direct it.


A big ego loves its inner monologue. Some speak it out, some keep it silent and within their mind. In both cases, our ego trip restricts us from listening to others. It reduces good teamwork and creates toxic work relations.

Awareness-based intrapersonal skills help keep your ‘egotistic problem’ in check allowing you to stay open to constructive criticism without falling into the trap of inner turmoil. Effective professionals don't freeze when met with a challenge; they like discussions and face all the disputes with rational argumentation and take it upon themselves to learn more.

Learning is already admitting that I don't know it all and am willing to listen to others and thus provides a solid foundation for partnering with the teammates.

People who know how emotions trigger their own inner problems and avoid that trap and take time to listen attentively as well as being able to lead their thinking with their awareness are always easy to work with. They don’t intimidate and search for the individual spotlight in order to get attention. They see that the team is always as strong as it’s the weakest link.


Teamwork is always about seeing the situation as it is, understanding your role in it, and helping others to succeed by facilitating learning. Modern office work is all about having the right mindset alignment, and this demands intrapersonal intelligence and good mental fitness.


Intrapersonal skills are beneficial throughout your whole career and team-building activities and lay a solid foundation for interpersonal relations, innovations, and a good economic outcome. For example, creativity is an intrapersonal skill, something you can learn to access at will. It just doesn't happen. You either make it happen and can be very innovative or combine what you already know and wonder why you fail to bring forward new innovations.

What you should know is that accessing creativity is easier when you feel well in a healthy work environment that is free from toxic human relations and unrealistic expectations.


Intrapersonal skills also enable you to remove all traces of toxicity in you. If everyone in your office removes toxic reactivity within themselves, it becomes very easy to develop normal work relations. 

A mentally toxic workplace ceases to exist when people in the workplace feel well and have healthy relations with themselves and others.

In ideal workplaces, people have an adequate response to external situations, and this enables everyone to focus on the task at hand with full awareness.​

What matters the most is that people with fit minds work well in teams and drive innovation.

This blog post is written by Kaur Lass