5 Ways To Lessen Tension Around The Office

We can all agree that once you enter the postgrad life, it quickly goes from a new, fun experience to realizing that you are going to be doing this job (or something like it) for the rest of your life. That’s a scary thought for anyone, no matter how much you may think you love your job. The trick is to make sure you have some fun mixed into the everyday monotony of the office lifestyle.

To help everyone out, and maintain some good street cred in the decrepit hole you call an office, it’s important to be someone who…

1. Always Has A Good YouTube Video To Share


Chances are that you aren’t the only one losing steam come mid-afternoon (unless it’s Friday), so what better way to keep the mood light and take a little break with everyone than sharing a hilarious viral video? The cat dressed as a shark riding around on the robot vacuum, twerking girl who set herself on fire (before we knew it was a Jimmy Kimmel prank), Phil Davison, Boom Goes the Dynamite guy, are the perfect kind of viral vids that’ll keep the mood light around the office.

2. Pulls Off Great, Work-Appropriate Pranks


Now this is where the line can be fuzzy. There is definitely a difference between pranking because you despise someone, and pranking to insight a little harmless office anarchy. My vote is go for the latter of the two. Well, wait a second, how do you know the difference between the two? Simple. If you are the one switching out some poor sap’s lunch meat with expired tuna fish, then you are the former of the two above options. If you’re the one who covers someone’s desk entirely in post-its, then you’re on track for some fun. The trick is to do something that won’t screw up anyone’s work and/or draw too much attention to yourself. Also remember, if you can’t take it, don’t dish it out.

Acceptable pranks are as follows:

  • Switch their background to a screen shot of all their icons so they can’t click on anything.
  • Send anonymous emails from their account to random people in the office telling them fun facts about cats.
  • Take 1,000 photos of random office supplies and your face on their phone that they left sitting innocently on their desk.
  • Type in the wrong passcode on their phone until it’s locked for 1 hour.
  • Cover their cube with magazine clippings of Justin Bieber and One Direction.

You get the idea.

3. Has A Good Weekend Story

If not for yourself, do it for the others at the office who spent their weekends watching their girlfriend pick out paint samples and then swung by Bed, Bath & Beyond to look at the latest throw pillow collection. Each weekend, just make sure you have a funny enough story to bring back to everyone come Monday morning. Just don’t turn into the “Bro, had a wild weekend…” story guy.

4. Comes Up With Bonding Activities That Aren’t Lame


I’m not talking about being the guy who suggests you all start a book club or write shared fan-fiction on Battlestar Galactica. It’s important to let them know you are a part of this team and want to help it grow in more ways than your Monday morning status meetings.

You want to be the one who set up the fantasy football league (and convinced the boss that the buy-in was $100 and not the $5 everyone else paid).

Once a month, leave a little early to go do an office trivia night at a bar near your building. This quickly becomes once a week until the dude that can’t hold his liquor decided it was good to rip Fireball shots every time your team got a question right and threw up on the secretary.

If you’re struggling to get creative, just organize the office softball team. No explanation necessary. This is just a solid idea and people usually still drink while playing. Win-win for the guys and the ladies who could care less about playing sports.

5. Goes Above And Beyond When It’s Your Friday To Bring Breakfast


It’s not out of the ordinary for teams to have a breakfast together on Fridays. It gets the team all together, and it’s a nice kickoff to the last day of the week. You probably rotate whose turn it is to bring in breakfast, and by now you’re probably sick of bagels, donuts, and Potbelly breakfast sandwiches. How do you change it up and set a new standard?

  • Bring in a toaster and boxes of Eggo Waffles.
  • Hire a chef to come in and make omelettes (use the company card for that one).
  • Ask your Mom to bake some form of mini-breakfast pies for each and every one of your coworkers.

At the end of the day, just remember that while your job/life might suck at times, you can be the positive note that makes things suck just a little less at the office. Now get off your ass, grab your Nerf gun and go pelt someone who looks like they’re ready to burn this mother to the ground.

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Mike lives in Chicago and has spent the better part of his life ragging on all things that annoy him. He will become a true Post-Grad next summer when he gets married to his other Post-Grad half who shares his hatred of all things stupid. Anyone with no interest in the media industry, craft beers, strong bourbons, and the ultimate joy of the golf course should seek other articles.

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