Good reasons to be back at the Office

Good reasons to go back to the office

With the adjustment to level 2 this past Sunday, and many people being vaccinated, more and more people are expected back at the office.

Today, in fact, is my first day at the office since I was last here in December. And while I thought I was mentally prepared to face it, it still came as quite a shock to the system. But tomorrow is a new day and there are great ways to prepare for it and make sure that I can enjoy my day with my colleagues and being back in the “real-world”.


Firstly, remember that you can’t wear slippers to the office

Yes, we’ve been privileged to spend winter in our “jammies” or comfy home clothes, but no one at the office wants to see you in those pants with the suspicious holes in weird places. And please don’t wear yoga pants or workout clothes either. Yes, you will have to dust off those jeans you haven’t worn since last year, and figure out how to get the zip closed (this may or may not have happened to me this morning ;))

Slippers are also a no-no, as well as taking off your shoes when you are sitting at your desk (but – there are slippers that look like real shoes and those you can use). To ease yourself into things, try some smart casual (flat – for the ladies) shoes that you find comfortable enough to spend all day in – and for driving in traffic in. Don’t start your first day back in 3-inch heels (trust me – your feet will thank me at the end of the day).


Bring a new mug with you when you head back to the office

If you thought the mug that you last used almost a year ago would be exactly where you left it – think again. Besides – who knows who has been drinking out of it for the last 6 months. Even if you did manage to find your mug – I’m not sure you would want it back…

Bringing a new mug with you to the office gives you a chance to express your individuality and show people who you have become. It also gives you the excuse to get a bigger mug for more coffee. Mr Price home has a great range of mugs that will help you find just the mug you want. You could even get one with a lid to keep your life juice, I mean coffee, warmer for longer.


Greet the people at the office

No, they are not your husband (or spouse) or children, so you do need to be polite and at the very least say “hi”. Your colleagues haven’t seen you and will definitely want you to stop by and say hello and have a short catch up. It will be a shock to the system, so make sure that you stagger it over a couple of days (especially if you are in a large office) and that you stick to wearing your mask. Remember that those working at the office have also changed over the last year, so be patient – and remember that you can’t put them on mute when you want a quiet moment.


Plan ahead

Make sure you bring snacks (lots and lots of snacks), water and lunch with you to the office. You cannot walk to your kitchen and take a look in the fridge to see what you can have for lunch. Sadly, your fridge isn’t with you. If you have become addicted to your particular brand of coffee at home, make sure that you bring some with you – it will ease the transition back to the office. If you are lucky enough to have a coffee machine at the office, remember to limit yourself in the beginning so that you don’t overdose on caffeine on your first day back and can’t sleep that night.


Cheer yourself up and get some beautiful new stationery for your desk – our EL-M335 comes in a beautiful baby pink or navy blue – and will bring some colour back to your desk and make you excited about those sales figures. There are also some great pens to try, or notebooks (again I love Mr P’s floral range at the moment), or anything else that will cheer you up when you can’t spend the afternoon working in bed with Friends playing in the background (no, I have never done this 😉 )


Wake up earlier

I know, traffic sucks. But waking up earlier (and setting out what you need the night before) definitely helps make the morning smoother and less rushed. Getting up half an hour earlier means that you don’t need to rush that first cup of coffee, and that you can have that early morning cuddle and giggle with your little one before you head out for the day.


Remind yourself about the positives

Besides stating the obvious (we have a job – in a country with an unemployment rate of 34.4% – Reuters) there are lots of other great things about working at the office.

Firstly, when you get there – you start working and when you leave, you are done working. There are clear boundaries on your work day, and you can spend the rest of the time focused on your family.

The aircon works. Its looks like it is shaping up to be a very warm summer and having a working aircon (that you don’t pay for) will make a world of difference when you could have been sweating at home.

Coffee pot / kitchen chats: I confess I missed seeing the colleagues that became friends over the last couple of months. Having a quick catch up on a phone call or via zoom is not quite the same. Being able to say hi in person, and catch up on life events, to celebrate big sales or wins, and gossip about customers that keep us on our toes, is a great reason to spend at least one day of the week at the office.

You get to dress up, wear your pretty things, and feel good about yourself. Show off that new pair of shoes, or that weight you’ve lost (or gained) or your newly acquired baking skills.


There’s more time to think

The one thing I missed the most about commuting to the office was the time I spent thinking in the car about future projects, and ideas that I wanted to try out. On my way in this morning, I wasn’t thinking about the mountain of dishes that needed washing, or the meals I would need to cook, or what needed to go on the grocery list, I was thinking about how I would enjoy my cup of coffee and all the things that I could accomplish today. Instead of mom-brain for the trip, I got to have the confident-work-person brain. It helped me to settle in and get through everything I needed to do this morning that much quicker.


Yes, working from home is wonderful

And I am definitely going to miss certain aspects of it – like being able to make a fresh batch of banana bread during my lunch break, or having the kettle and coffee about 3m away from me at all times, or my beautiful view out of my windows.

But there are so many positive reasons to be at the office too. So, don’t be sad. Remember that you can now hide your chocolate bar in your desk drawer and no-one else will eat it 😉 I think that is the best reason of all to return to the office.

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