Beliefnet
Make Your Relationship Work

andrew-neel-218073-unsplashMixing business with pleasure is risky. You have one too many drinks at the holiday party and, suddenly, that sexy young blonde you’ve been eyeing from across the office is in your bed. Maybe you realize you don’t even like her personality in the morning. Or you’re into it, but you’re worried about what people will say. The whole ordeal can be a distraction in the work place, and so it’s highly frowned upon. Here are six tips for pulling off an office romance with secrecy.

Shut up about it.

This is the biggest rule of all, because without it, nothing else matters. You can be together, then quit and hate each other or be friends, but if other people in the office know, any hope of privacy goes straight out the window. So if you’re going to go through with it, don’t get drunk at the office happy hour and tell your coworkers your dirty little secret. Your truth will only become a mix of twisted rumors that make you, or her, look bad.

Don’t arrive at work together.

You’re going to shack up with your hookup for the night every now and then. This means eventually dragging an overnight bag along, sleeping over, getting ready for work together, and then making your way to the office… also together. But the rule here is to show up separately. Get to work on time, but one of you should show up a few minutes before or after the other. Don’t ride in the same cab, or even head up in the same elevator. Someone will catch on.

Don’t converse through your work email.

There are just so many mistakes that can be made here. First of all, if your boss is suspicious, they’ll make sure to access your email threads and find what they need. You may also find that your work boo is on an email thread you’re a part of, and you suddenly get the urge to send her a sweet or sexy message, but accidentally click reply all. Not a good look

When you’re at work, be at work.

Perhaps your connection flourished over common connections while sitting at side-by-side cubicles. But when things get really real, it can be very transparent at work. Don’t go from talking a lot to barely talking, of course, but try to remain casually friendly while focusing on your priority: work.

Choose discreet hangouts outside of the office.

Don’t meet at the bar next to your office for happy hour. Don’t go to a restaurant in the neighborhood for a romantic dinner. Either keep things at home or choose discreet neighborhood hole-in-the-wall restaurants. There’s nothing more awkward than a colleague, or your boss, walking into an establishment to see you two locking lips.

Don’t tell anyone about it until it’s serious.

Work flings can be just like any other fling. They come, they go and they may be totally forgotten. But if everyone in the office knows about it, you’ll never live it down. Your reputation may even be destroyed. That’s why it’s best to keep things on the low as much as possible until you both know it’s legitimate. And if it gets to that point, then make sure your work even allows you to date coworkers before spilling the beans.

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