Finding yourself attracted to one of your coworkers isn’t all that unusual. The fact is that work is where you spend 40+ hours a week. That means a solid 40 hours spent around the same people. People who have similar work hours and interests. It’s pretty understandable how there may come a time that you realize that you have a crush on a coworker –but is it more than a crush? And, if it is something more, is it something you should actually pursue? Here are some things to consider before mixing business and pleasure:
Some places have rules against dating coworkers, so make sure to familiarize yourself with your office’s policy. Dating a coworker may not be allowed or it might be okay so long as it is disclosed. Know the rules and know the consequences for breaking them. Even if your office doesn’t explicitly state they are against it, it might still be frowned upon. Be aware.
Recognize that proximity leads to attraction. Do you really like your coworker or do you like the convenience of them? Figure that out before diving into anything. Remember, this is someone you will be spending a lot of time with both during the workday and during your free time.
Think about how closely the two of you work together. Things going poorly at work could lead to problems in your personal life just as romantic problems could seep into the professional environment. You both have to be able to separate your professional and personal lives for things to work out. If even one of you isn’t able to do that, don’t get into a relationship.
Be aware that you two will be fueling the gossip mill at work. While you should try and keep your personal relationship strictly outside of the office, it is possible that people at work will find out or at least speculate on the matter. Both of you are well aware of how gossip starts and spreads in your office. Make sure you are both able and willing to deal with that –or at least be able to ignore it.
If things end poorly, one or both of you might be bitter. That alone is enough to make the work environment uncomfortable for both of you and your coworkers. Then there is the added possibility one of you might try and seek revenge by making the work place miserable for the other. If things don’t work out, this is one ex that you actually will have to see on a daily basis. Every day of the week. If you already know that this person isn’t someone you’d be interest in being with in the long run, it’s best not to get involved in the first place. And if you’ve weighed the pros and cons of dating in the office and a relationship with your coworker still sounds downright dreamy? Don’t be afraid to go for it!
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