You have a crush on a person you work with—who is not single.
When you get into work, say, “Good morning!” When you hear a cheerful, “Good morning!” in response, don’t linger for small talk. Go to your desk. Try to do work.
When your workplace crush instant messages you, first, stay calm. Don’t think about how your face is flushing, or about how your heart is pounding. Crack a joke, but not a flirty one. Don’t cross that line. Crossing that line will end in heartbreak.
During your staff meeting, when your boss says that crazy thing and your workplace crush gives you that “omg, can you believe that?”-look, give a “I know, it’s incredible, right?”-look back, but don’t gaze into those eyes too long.
When you’re walking out of the conference room, and see your workplace crush in front of you, don’t look longingly at how perfect the back of their head looks.
When your workplace crush says, “Hey, want to grab lunch?” Say yes. Grab your jacket but make sure it’s for you and not in case your workplace crush gets cold.
During lunch, when your workplace crush says, “So, how are things? Seeing anybody?” respond that things are good and that you’re not seeing anyone at the moment. When your workplace crush says, “Really? Someone hasn’t already realized how great you are?” respond, “Not yet, but maybe one day.”
Later in the day, when your workplace crush says, “Hey, a few of us are getting drinks after work, are you in or out?” Say that you’re in.
At the bar, hang out with other people besides your workplace crush—it’s only for the best. Try not to gaze longingly across the room to where your workplace crush is sitting. Don’t watch your workplace crush laugh, sip that gin and tonic, smile that smile.
Certainly DO NOT have that Craig Armstrong theme playing in your head while trying not to gaze across the room at your workplace crush.
Don’t have that Craig Armstrong theme playing in your head and think about how things could be, what it would be like on the weekends, the trips you’d take together, the family you’d raise, the fights you’d have, the way you’d make things right, the notes you’d leave every morning to simply say, “I love you.” Don’t think about any of those things.
When your workplace crush waves you over, have a minute to yourself before you walk over.
When your workplace crush introduces you to their significant other, say, “I’ve heard so many great things about you! It’s so nice to finally meet you!” Talk for a few minutes, and then excuse yourself to get another drink.
Have another drink.
Maybe have one more drink after that.
On the walk home, don’t put on your headphones. Don’t listen to Adele.
B. Benson is an office drone.