Workplace dating and romance

Despite all the stress that people encounter at their workplace, dating and office romance have steadily increased over the past few years.

Workplace dating and romance is well suited for those who spend most of their time at office. Since most of the population falls under this category, workplace romance has more or less become a universal phenomenon. For a die-hard romantic, an office atmosphere may not be particularly conducive to nurture amorous feelings.

But if time is not on your side and you're working long hours at your desk, you rather have a pleasant distraction just a few cubicles away instead of carrying out a futile search outside your workplace.

How do you date or romance in a confined space such as an office? Isn't it strange to be dating or seeing your girlfriend from morning till evening? Look at the brighter side of it.... Mark, a copywriter in a well-known advertising firm, was interested in Susan, an accounts executive in the same office. Since the interest was mutual, their romance soon blossomed into love and ultimately into wedlock.

Throughout their courtship, which was largely confined to their office, they managed to keep their affair under wraps. "A little bit of self-control, caution and projecting a cool and composed demeanor in front of my colleagues, is all it took to keep our affair a secret" revealed Mark to his baffled colleagues when he broke the news of his marriage plans to them.

Turning a casual romance at office into a long-term relationship is indeed a tough call. Try to keep your professional self while dealing with your girlfriend/boyfriend in front of your other colleagues.

Once the cat is out of the bag, be prepared to be subjected to ridicule, criticism and even snide remarks from your co-workers. To avoid any embarrassing or awkward situations, a deft handling of your romantic liaison is advised.

There are certain positive aspects to workplace dating and romance, which are arguably the high points that attract couples to indulge in this. Unlike so many dating couples who wait throughout the week to meet their dates, the ones indulging in workplace dating have the golden opportunity to see their girlfriend/boyfriend everyday.

This can save you a lot to time and money. Since you spend close to 30-40 hours per week on an average at your workplace, constant interaction with your beau will give you a fair idea of what he/she is like. The fuel and traveling time you will be saving, while you date a colleague at office, is also phenomenal.

The downslides to workplace dating and romance is one too many. 'Familiarity breeds contempt' is a well-known adage but in this case, familiarity can spur friction. The fact that your are in constant contact with your boyfriend/girlfriend day in and day out, there is a tendency to feel suffocated. A little amount of breathing space or time is necessary for each of you to develop a hobby or interest. Spending time with your friends can be a pleasant interlude if any signs of tension creep into your relationship.

Balancing personal issues and professional life is a challenge which a person romantically involved with his colleague must face. Mixing business with pleasure is not a perfect concoction to achieve professional success. If you are involved with a person much senior to you, then do not use him/her as a means to achieve a professional goal.

There is a predicament if you are involved with a person considerably junior to you in position also. If he/she doesn't meet up to your professional expectations, it becomes difficult to react in such a situation. It's necessary that both of you should rise above your personal feelings for each other when it comes to achieving a sales target or meeting deadlines.

Go out of the way to treat him/her as you would any other colleague. Resist the temptation to overtly express your feelings for each other lest anybody accuse you of taking sides. An adherence to office rules is necessary and do not create any such situations that may cause embarrassment or awkwardness in front of your co-workers.

Office romance can be fun and more only if you strictly adhere to the rules. The rules we are referring to are not only the ones laid down by your organization but the rules you stipulate for yourselves. Sincerity towards your profession should never be underplayed even if it means giving orders to him/her (read love interest).

In case of something going haywire, apart from feeling emotionally drained, you may create an irreparable dent in your career. A careful handling of your affair is most prudent to make an office romance a successful affair.