"Infatuation, like a common cold, must run its course." - Unknown
If you work in an office everyday, then you probably spend more time with your coworkers than with your own family. For five days a week, roughly 350 days a year, they're pouring their coffee, making phone calls, eating lunch right next to you. Chances are, you've met a couple people you connect and hang out with once in a while, both inside and outside the office. Super casual, right?
Then, you start noticing yourself gravitating towards the break room when a certain someone is there. You share snacks, laughs, and inside jokes. You start bringing that individual up in watercooler conversations more and more. What's going on?
You have an office crush.
That's right — Jim and Pam status. If you're in an environment where you are able to date a coworker, awesome! (Your next Google search: "How to ask your coworker out.") If you're not, then you've come to the right place. Instead of panicking, take a look at our list of ways to deal with it quietly and professionally so neither you nor your crush are negatively affected by it.
1. Accept It
If you haven't already, the first thing you need to do is accept that you have a work crush. But don't start a new job search just yet. According to psychologists, crushes last on average about four months before they start to fade away — or grow stronger. Don't feel like you're the only one going through this. Work crushes are fairly normal. Seeing and socializing with someone who is around you every day is very common and in some cases, good for you.
2. Keep it to Yourself
Sure, you might want to tell someone and get it off your chest right away — just please not with colleagues. This creates unnecessary drama, secrecy, and could lead to an awkward work environment if word gets out. If you must tell someone, tell a relative or a close friend you don't work with. You might receive sound advice without boarding the gossip train.
3. Stay Professional
Probably the most important tip here: keep it professional. Public work crushes are an HR nightmare and can hurt your reputation as a professional. Spreading rumors, heavily drinking, or any other act to get their attention or spur something on is not the way to go. Feel free to have fun and socialize with them, but stay classy and within reason. If you're debating whether a certain topic is appropriate to talk about or not, chances are, it's not.
4. Find the Silver Lining
It's important to look at the positive aspects of your situation. Use your crush as motivation to: come into work everyday, look your best, and work hard to meet your goals. If your crush works in a different department, use it to connect with others in that department, gain unique perspectives, and collaborate on different projects. Having a crush as an ally at work could help bridge the gap between departments and make work in general a bit more fun.
Have you ever had a work crush? How'd you deal with it?
Share your experience in the comments. (Don't worry we won't tell anyone, especially not HR.)
Winter is coming...don't get sucked into all the office drama. Read our post on Lessons in Office Politics from Game of Thrones.