Dating a co-worker - is it affecting your work?

It is believed that more than half of the young adult population spends more than three-fourth of their waking life in their office or workplace. Sitting within the cloistered space called the office leave these young people with hardly anytime to socialize or date. Their wait for the weekend to arrive to meet their girlfriends or lover, often seems long stretched and tiresome. It’s almost like you are in a long distance relationship though you and your girlfriend live in the same town for all purposes! Not surprisingly, there is a sudden spurt in office dating and romance.

After all if one spends most of the time in office, it becomes natural for people too feel attracted towards one another. Dating a co-worker can be an over-sensitive experience but sometimes equally hard to resist. People who have been successful at an office romance believe that "Dating a co-worker can turn into a gratifying experience if the two people involved are mature enough, to not only remain loyal to each other but to their professional responsibilities too” says Rob who successfully dated a co-worker and consequently married her.

But dating a co-worker may not always be a rewarding experience. Look out for these signs which indicate that dating a co-worker can sometimes affect your work.

Lack of maturity
While dating a co-worker, the boy and the girl should take extra precautions to keep their romance under wraps. A little act of immaturity, like confiding in a friend at work, may jeopardize your chances of turning this relationship into a successful one.

Dating a co-worker can affect your work, if you are unable to differentiate between work and pleasure. If personal issues like a fight or a misunderstanding crop up, then it can have a direct effect on your efficiency at work.
 
A romance at the office can affect your work when you are seen spending more time at your boyfriend/girlfriend’s cubicle than yours. In office dating, the temptation to talk to your beau, who is just a cubicles away is very high. If you are habituated in spending whatever free time you get with your partner rather than finishing pending work, you will either end up with a huge backlog of work or invite the ire of your superiors.

While dating a co-worker, there is a very thin line of demarcation between work and pleasure. If you are unable to put a safe distance between the two, then it is sure to backfire and affect your work.

If you are dating a co-worker, do not give out any tell-tale signs to your other colleagues about your romance. Your work and your girlfriend’s work will definitely get affected, if the grapevine within the organization blows your romance out of proportion.

Are you dating a co-worker who is junior to you in position? If so, you may have an inclination to show some leniency towards him/her in professional matters. If the others in the organization get to know about your partiality, your work and probably your equation with your seniors may get affected. Be ready to expect similar results if you are dating someone senior to you in position. The after effects of such a situation could be quite adverse, unless one of you decides to change the job before things go out of hand.

In today’s competitive world, every person faces a lot of stress and pressure at work. If you are dating a co-worker, then you may experience probably twice the amount of stress and pressure than your counterparts. On the professional front, you are busy meeting deadlines and on the personal front, you are expected to take extra precautions to keep your romance under wraps, especially from the prying eyes of your colleagues.

The fear of a colleague learning about your romance, and probably taking advantage of the situation, may bother you, thereby affecting your work.

If dating a co-worker is affecting your work, then it's time to weigh your priorities. If you intend to continue your relationship with your partner at the office, it's advisable that one of you change the department or location.

If you feel that dating your co-worker may not lead to marriage or a long-term relationship, the outcome itself can have an adverse effect on your job. If the relationship itself has lost its sense of direction, then you may as well end it and start focusing on your professional life.