6 Topics to Avoid Discussing at Work

There are some conversations that don't belong in the workplace. Certain topics could make things awkward and even unpleasant for you and for your coworkers. You should always, for example, stay away from discussions that may become fodder for the office grapevine with you as the main focus. You should also avoid revealing personal information that might negatively influence the perceptions others have about your ability to do your job effectively. Discussing controversial subjects can also get you into trouble with your coworkers. Here are six topics you should seriously consider crossing off your "things to discuss with my coworkers" list. Safe topics, if you were wondering, include movies, music and food (especially if you bring some into share).


Business people working in conference room
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You shouldn't discuss your religious beliefs or your thoughts about other religious beliefs at work. This doesn't mean you should hide your religion or shouldn't be proud of it, but it is a very personal issue and people are often sensitive about it. They don't want to hear that you disagree with their religious beliefs or that you believe your religion is the one in which everyone should believe.


People are also very sensitive about their political beliefs and therefore you should avoid getting into lengthy conversations about politics. While you may feel very strongly about your party or candidate, or have negative views about the opposition, you should not try to win your coworkers over to your side. It is unlikely to happen anyway and will just cause hard feelings between you and them.

Your Sex Life

Why shouldn't you talk about your sex life? Simply because it's no one's business other than yours and your partner's. Other than that, it makes people uncomfortable. Taken to the extreme, it may even border on sexual harassment. If you need to confide in someone other than your partner, a good friend will have to do.

Problems With Your Spouse, Your Children or Your Parents

When you discuss problems you are having at home, your coworkers and your boss may wonder if they are distracting you from doing your job. It will also reveal your weaknesses which can undermine your authority with your subordinates, if you have any. In addition, it will feed the rumor mill, making you the subject of workplace gossip. That is something you surely don't want to be.

Your Career Aspirations

You may consider your current job a steppingstone to bigger and better things. That's great but talking about your ambitions will certainly, for good reason, make your boss and coworkers question your loyalty. If you are interested in moving up within your current organization, your actions will speak for themselves. You should do your job exceptionally well, and of course, let your boss know you want to move up. Just don't make it the topic of workplace conversations with anyone who will listen. If your plans for the future include leaving your current place of employment in order to advance it isn't necessary to announce that until you are ready to make your move.

Your Health Problems

If you have a chronic illness, don't dwell on it too much at work. Doing so will give your coworkers and boss reason to wonder if your condition will keep you from doing your job. If you have a serious health issue that will cause you to take leave from work, you must discuss it with your employer, but you are not required to provide details.

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