We all know someone who struggled to deal with their superiors at work, most of us had bad experiences with our boss ourselves: 

Has your boss shouted at you? Or was swearing at you for things they thought you have done incorrectly, maybe even in the presence of co-workers to make you look bad in front of them? Has your boss not given you the support you needed?

Some bosses make promises they don’t stick to, and treat their employees unfairly and inequitably. There are many different ways in which a boss can become difficult to deal with. It is natural to feel angry when feeling treated unfairly. 

Whatever happened between you and your boss, you can choose to hold a grudge or forgive them – taking into consideration that you spend most of your week in your work environment having to deal with your boss going forward. 

Here are 5 reasons to forgive your boss going forward: 

1. You will be more productive productivity at work.

When choosing not to hold grudges, you start your working days with more positive energy. You won’t feel the need to be absent due to not wanting to cross paths with your boss. 

Forgiving your boss for their mistake(s) can bring better focus and thereby improve your work performance. Your mind will be free and the communication with your boss can continue flowing in a positive and friendly way. 

2. Your (mental) health improves. 

Forgiveness, according to research, is linked to lower blood pressure and heart rate – when you keep anger inside and hold grudges both increase which can lead to health problems. 

Some people feel physically affected when not being able to forgive and feel stressed, the immune system might slow down – whether it is related to a boss or anyone else. Finding a way to forgive your boss and move on from what has happened, relieves physical symptoms.

Being forgiving reduces anxiety and depression. 

3. You have a better job experience overall

In general, having good relationships with colleagues and bosses makes our job experiences better. Mistakes happen and people will do us wrong in certain situations – whether expected or unexpected, whether intentional or unintentional. 

Finding a way to share your experience with your boss in a respectful and kind way can strengthen your relationship with them. Open and direct communication after conflict will help all individuals involved improve. 

4. You inspire others by being a good example

Speaking openly to your boss about their mistakes from your point of view and stepping up for yourself can inspire co-workers to do the same. In an atmosphere in which everyone involved can feel safe to speak up and solve a conflict, a healthy dynamic is being created. 

5. Forgiving increases your self-esteem

When you forgive your boss, you show empathy and understanding for their mistake(s) and the way they hurt you. You show that you are capable of managing to overcome difficult situations by adopting a forgiving mindset – this can trigger a sense of taking responsibility and make you proud for dealing with the situation in a mature way. 

Keep in mind that forgiving your boss does not mean that you do it right away and for every mistake they made – it is absolutely fine to give it some time until things calm down and you processed what has happened, forgiveness is a process. It also does not mean not giving them feedback for their actions and behaviour towards you. 

Forgiving your boss means freeing yourself from holding a grudge and also from the emotional pain the situation might have caused you. You can move on stronger. 




If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.
Franziska Richter is a transcultural counsellor with the Willingness Team, offering counselling sessions to individuals and couples. She is particularly interested in sexuality, relationship issues, trauma, and general mental health.