Office survival

Many a time when we think of survival, we thing of out there, in some foreign land or in some unforgiving conditions of nature. What about closer to home?

The notion of office survival is very real. It’s not just about maintaining professionalism and expanding opportunities for career progressions- it’s about remaining sane whilst doing the daily grind and earning your dough.

There is no such thing as a perfect workplace or environment but there is certainly no harm in pursuing the ultimate working conditions for maximum productivity with minimal input and unnecessary stress. Thus below is what I have compiled for your benefit or amusement. Regardless, read it…please.

Note: It is up to you to make your day a positive one! 


  • Get stuff ready- lay clothes out, pack lunch, pack your kit. if you’re organised, the morning will be a breeze
  • Make sure you are well presented, take the time and effort, it would be worth it.

First light (read: when you wake)

  • Get your mojo on- Do what makes you happy! Dance, sing, watch youtube videos of cats, take 5 mins to do it.

In your kit-carry a bag that fits your stuff, nothing more annoying having a 1001 different things in your hands whilst you’re trying to get out the door.

  • Phone
  • Wallet/purse
  • Keys
  • Diary- if you’re old-school like me
  • Small first aid kit- you never know when you’ll need a band-aid
  • sewing kit- rarely used, but the scissors have proven handy time and time again
  • Ladies: personal stuff, someone else may need one
  • Tissues and wet wipes
  • Hand sanitiser
  • A plastic (grocery) bag
  • Water bottle
  • Emergency Chocolate/ Carob bar (should you need a quick fix)

Ration Pack

  • Coffee or tea…pick your poison
  • Fruits and Veg- Being in close proximity to others in a small area = freeway for bugs! Keeping your immune system healthy is important
  • Prepare all the meals you require the night before. Most days I pack my breakfast and lunch with 2-3 different snacks. All these are packed into my lunch bag in the morning.

Your Inner Diplomat

In this context, a diplomat means someone who endeavours to keep the peace. This does not mean you have to be a door mat or a a** kisser. This also does not mean be someone else, just be the best version of you.

  • Always be pleasant and use your manners- nobody wants to walk into an office full of sour grapes!
  • Never criticise someone’s personal choice- if it does not affect your work or you, leave it alone…
  • Speak positively/ constructively or don’t say anything at all- this is an oldie but a goodie, and I’ll have you know, those in management can be guilty of it, but that does not mean that it give them or anyone else the right to do so. Speaking negatively reflects badly on the person you are speaking off and also yourself.
  • Do not engage in office gossip- if you want drama, watch Breaking Bad or Game of thrones…
  • Never show your temper- if it gets too much, just walk away.
  • Stand firm with what you believe in. If there are to be difference, so be it.
  • Vulgarity has a time and  place, but not in a water cooler conversation or anywhere else in the office. Even if you are fluent and comfortable with vulgarity, others may not. Be considerate.
  • Be early and leave just after- 5 mins each is sufficient. This just means you have time to settle in before you get to work, make your coffee and fire up the computer. Leaving just after means you get time to organise the next day, even if it’s just writing one word on a post-it
  • Keep an eye out for professional development opportunities- gaining skills is always a good thing, some can be prerequisites for promotions.
  • Limit personal social networking to lunch time/ breaks, better yet, don’t use the work computers for personal purposes. Step in the smart phones.
  • If using the work wifi, beware, the IT guys routinely monitor traffic activity.
  • Volunteer to undertake additional responsibilities ONLY if you have time
  • Keep your word and work effectively- no one wants to carry dead weight.
  • Schedule mental health days off- being balanced= being happy= good attitude= better and happier worker.

Hope you enjoyed this! Have you got your survival tips? Comment them below!


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