Try These 7 Tips When Your Boss Makes You Feel Incompetent

Written By Aleena

What should you do when your boss makes you feel incompetent? We would recommend, if they give you lemons, make a lemonade.

If your boss makes you feel incompetent, it can be a very frustrating situation.

You may feel like you are not good enough or are not doing your job correctly or you have a question in mind “I feel incompetent at my new job”.

7 Things To Do When Your Boss Makes You Feel Incompetent

If your boss is constantly criticizing you, it can be tough to stay positive and motivated.

You can do a few things to overcome this feeling and regain your confidence.

1. Talk to your boss: 

If you feel like your boss is constantly putting you down, it might be time to chat with them.

Sit down with them and explain how you’re feeling. Be honest and open. And try to listen to their side of the story.

Chat with boss - When Your Boss Makes You Feel Incompetent

You have to be assertive and tell them how you feel. But do it calmly and respectfully.

While it’s essential, to be honest with your boss, you don’t want to come across as confrontational.

Sometimes, your boss may not even realize that their behavior harms you.

Thus, it’s essential to speak up and let them know how you feel.

You can say something like, “I’ve noticed that you’ve been criticizing my work lately. 

I appreciate your feedback, but it’s making me feel incompetent. I feel like I can’t do anything right. 

Can we please talk about this? I want to improve my work, but your criticism makes it hard for me.

I just wanted to let you know how I feel so that we can try to find a solution.”

2. Take Some Time For Yourself: 

If your boss is making you feel incompetent, it’s essential to take some time for yourself.

It would help if you focused on your happiness and wellbeing. Take some time off from work, if possible.

This will give you a chance to recharge. You can come back feeling refreshed and ready to take on anything.

If you can’t take time off, try to find other ways to relax and de-stress.

Take a long bath, go for a walk in nature, or read your favorite book.

Do whatever makes you feel good. It’s essential to find ways to relax to deal with the stress of your job.

3. Talk to Someone You Trust: 

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it’s essential to talk to someone you trust.

This can be a friend, family member, or therapist. It’s essential to have someone to talk to who will understand and support you.

Venting to someone can help you feel better and release some of the pent-up frustration you’re feeling.

It can also be helpful to get an outsider’s perspective. They may be able to offer some advice or insight that you haven’t considered.

4. Focus On Your Strengths: 

It’s easy to focus on your shortcomings when your boss constantly criticizes you.

But it’s important to remember your strengths. Write down a list of things you’re good at. Remember times when you’ve received compliments from others.

Focusing on your positive qualities can help you feel better about yourself and your abilities.

It can also help you see that your boss’s criticisms are not always accurate.

Moreover, it’s important to remember that everyone has strengths and weaknesses. 

No one is perfect. And that’s okay. Other ways to regain confidence:

4.1 Challenge Yourself:

One way to feel better about yourself is to set some goals and achieve them.

Some goals - When Your Boss Makes You Feel Incompetent

This will give you a sense of accomplishment and prove that you are competent.

Choose goals that are challenging but achievable. And don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.

4.2 Find A Mentor: 

At the time when you are feeling incompetent at work. Having a mentor at work can be extremely helpful.

They can offer advicesupport, and guidance. They can also help you to see your potential and realize your worth.

A mentorship relationship can be highly beneficial. So, if you have the opportunity, take it.

4.3 Take On New Responsibilities: 

Taking on new responsibilities at work can help you feel more confident and competent.

It’s a great way to show your boss that you can handle more than they think.

And it can also help you learn new skills and improve your abilities.

4.4 Seek Out Feedback: 

Asking for feedback can be a great way to get some perspective on your work. It can also help you to identify areas that need improvement.

But it’s important to remember that not all feedback is created equal.

Some people may be more critical than others. And that’s okay.

Just take the feedback that will be most helpful to you and ignore the rest.

4.5 Practice Self-Compassion:

One of the most important things you can do for yourself is be compassionate.

This means being understanding and kind to yourself, even when you make mistakes.

It’s important to remember that everyone makes mistakes. And that’s okay.

What’s important is that you learn from your mistakes and try not to repeat them.

Being self-compassionate can help you to feel better about yourself and your abilities.

And it can also help you be more resilient in the face of criticism.

5. Change Your Perspective: 

A great way to deal with feeling incompetent is to change your perspective.

Instead of seeing your boss’s criticism as a personal attack, try to see it as constructive feedback. 

This can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that not all criticism is meant to be hurtful.

Some of it may be accurate and helpful. And that’s okay.

It’s important to remember that you can use criticism to your advantage.

You can use it to improve your work and become more competent.

So, instead of seeing it as a negative thing, try to see it as an opportunity to grow and learn.

6. Seek Out Other Opportunities: 

If you’re unhappy in your current job, it may be time to look for other opportunities.

Look for other opportunities.

This doesn’t mean that you have to quit your job. But it does mean that you should explore other options.

Look for jobs that interest you. And don’t be afraid to apply for them. You may be surprised by what you’re capable of. 

7. Try To Understand Where Your Boss Is Coming From:

It can be helpful to try to understand where your boss is coming from. Some reasons why they may be critical:

7.1 They’re Having A Bad Day: 

Sometimes, people are just having a bad day. And that’s okay. It doesn’t mean that they don’t like you or think you’re incompetent.

Bosses are human too. And sometimes, they need to vent. 

However, if this is a regular occurrence, it may be time to talk with your boss.

7.2 They’re Under A Lot Of Pressure: 

Another reason your boss may be critical is that they’re under a lot of pressure.

They may be worried about meeting deadlines or impressing their boss.

And that can sometimes lead to them taking it out on you.

If this is the case, try to be understanding. And if possible, offer to help them out.

7.3 They’re Trying To Motivate You: 

In some cases, bosses may be critical because they’re trying to motivate you.

They may think that you have the potential to do great things, and they’re trying to push you to reach your full potential.

This type of criticism can be hard to take. But it’s important to remember that it’s coming from a place of positive intent.

7.4 They’re Jealous Of You: 

Sometimes, bosses may be critical because they’re jealous of you.

They may think that you have something that they don’t have. And that can lead to them feeling threatened.

If this is the case, try to be understanding and compassionate. And if possible, try to help them out.

7.5 You Are Performing Poor Lately:

Of course, you may be actually performing poorly.

And if that’s the case, then it’s essential to take the criticism constructively. Try to improve your work.

When you make an effort to improve, it will show your boss that you’re willing to work hard. You assure me that you’re capable of doing the job.

Willing to work hard.

But if you don’t think you’re doing anything wrong, then it may be time to talk with your boss.

7.6 They’re Criticizing Everyone, Not Just You: 

It’s also possible that your boss is critical because they’re just critical people.

They may criticize everyone, not just you. And that’s not fair. But it’s important to remember that you can’t control other people.

All you can do is control your reaction to the situation.

7.7 They Have A Personal Problem With You: 

Finally, your boss may have a personal problem with you. And if that’s the case, then it may be time to talk with them.

Sort out the issue. And if you can’t come to a resolution, it may be time to look for other opportunities.

Why Is It Inappropriate At Workplace To Make Someone Feel Incompetent?

Making someone feel incompetent is inappropriate in the workplace because:

1. Feeling Of Inadequacy:

Incompetence can lead to a feeling of inadequacy and low self-esteem.

These feelings are not conducive to a productive work environment. They can lead to disengagement and apathy.

Which, in turn, can lead to poor work performance. 

2. It’s Destructive:

Incompetence is also destructive because it can lead to a feeling of hopelessness.

When people feel hopeless, they tend to give up. And that’s not good for anyone.

Employee turnover is also costly for businesses. It’s essential to retain good employees. 

3. It Damages Relationships:

Incompetence damages relationships. When bosses are critical, it can lead to tension and conflict.

Hostile environment.

And that’s not good for team morale. It can also lead to office politics. 

This can damage relationships and lead to a hostile work environment.

4. It’s Unprofessional:

Finally, incompetence is unprofessional. It shows a lack of respect for others.

And it can make you look bad in front of your boss and colleagues.

In the end, incompetence takes a toll on everyone. It’s essential to be respectful and professional in the workplace.


Remember that you can’t please everyone. And that’s okay. You don’t need to be perfect.

All you can do is your best. And as long as you’re doing that, you should be proud of yourself.

If you find yourself in a situation where you’re feeling incompetent, try to remember these tips. They may help you to feel better about yourself.

And above all else, don’t forget that you’re not alone. We all have days when we feel like we can’t do anything right.

The important thing is to keep going.

Last Updated on 3 months by


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