Navigating the Challenging Complexities of Gaslighting in Nursing Academe

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Background: Gaslighting is a subtle form of workplace bullying, characterized by psychological manipulation, occurring over time, which causes the target to question their memories or perceptions of reality. Gaslighting can lead to confusion, loss of confidence, uncertainty of one's mental stability, and negatively impact the workplace culture.

Innovation: The author provides in-depth descriptions of gaslighting behavior and its effects, examples of gaslighting in nursing academe, and strategies to address the challenging complexities of gaslighting behaviors.

Implications: Despite the negative impacts of gaslighting, some individuals tolerate the behavior for fear of losing their job, work identity, or financial security. When left unaddressed, gaslighting can cause targets to second guess or question their reality, ruminate about past conversations, or blame themselves for ongoing conflicts.

Conclusions: In workplace cultures where gaslighting and other forms of incivility persist, members may be reticent or fearful to speak up. The author offers evidence-based individual and organizational strategies to navigate the challenging complexities of gaslighting behavior as an insidious form of toxic workplace behavior.