When it comes to getting involved with someone you work with, there’s one universal rule: Don’t do it! But we know that’s easier said than done. And the majority of us spend most of our waking hours at work, and that often means sharing space and professionally mingling with really attractive people. Add to that the many, many dating apps and blind set ups, an office romance with a great guy or girl you already get along with might seem tempting.
Maybe there’s even someone you already have your eye on, but you’re not sure if you should take the leap.
We get it. Moving from a professional relationship to a more intimate and personal one isn’t a decision you should make without thinking it through. You’re spending a lot of time with this person already so it should be easy to observe closely to pick up any possible red flags. You want to make sure if you do go ahead and act on your feelings that you won’t be making a mistake and potentially put your job at risk.
So, here are a few signs that it might be okay to go for it with your coworker.
1The feelings are mutual.
Okay, you have a crush on someone you work with, and you can’t go for it unless you know they feel the same. But how do you know if they feel the same? Maybe they linger at your desk a little bit too long, or they’ll always be the first to volunteer when you need help; You may have even caught them dreamily staring at you from across the room — all signs that the feelings are mutual. And if the feelings are possibly mutual, what are you waiting for? Go for it! Find out what’s up!
2Your coworker crush is single and ready to mingle.
If coworker bae is constantly letting it slip during your conversations that he or she is single, emotionally available, and ready to “get back out there” then that’s a great sign. If you really like this person, the last thing you want is to start developing deep feelings only to realize they’re still not over their ex, or worse, already with someone.
3They’re anti-drama and gossip.
Every office has its gossip and drama, but if you’ve noticed your crush staying out of it all then that’s a great sign. Whether or not you decide to go public with your relationship, you can probably rest assured that details of your personal life won’t be floating around the office or become the talk at the water cooler.
4Your boss has hinted that office romances aren’t completely against the rules.
One of the biggest reasons we can think of to not date in the workplace is because it’s often forbidden. But if there’s no policy against office romances in place or if your higher-ups are pretty chill about it, then why not make your move? If they don’t work under you or you don’t work under them, then there’s really no ethical reason to not, ya know, work under each other. (Yes, we had to. You know we had to.)
5They treat others well.
You can always tell whether a someone is a good person or not by how they treat other people. If your crush is a team player, if they’re kind, and encouraging to those around them, those are just good qualities in anyone to date.
6They’ve shown they can separate the personal from the professional.
People who work together may have the occasional disagreement. If your coworker crush has shown he or she is mature enough to compromise and find a solution without being petty during those “fights,” that’s a good indication they are totally worth dating. You’ll likely be able to trust the fact that if you two are having a fight in your home life, you two will be able to “hit pause” while at work.
When all is said and done, sure, having a thing for someone you work with is less than ideal, but if the signs are all there, how will you feel if don’t follow your heart? Will you be able to live with the regret of not knowing? If the answer is no, then go for it.