Do you know what keeps you sane during office hours? Your work colleagues, of course!

Since office or work hours take huge precedence over your everyday schedule, you spend most of the time with your office colleagues.

Thus, it makes more sense when you slowly start considering them as your friends. After all, you see these people every day and there’s nothing wrong in wanting to broaden your friend circle.

It only adds more glee! Friends uplift and encourage you to do well and office colleagues are no less than them.

Whether it’s a bad day at work or they are cheering at you for your success, work friends make it easier to get through the day.

However, before you schedule dates for cafe get-together, you must be aware of the essential rules of making work friends for future caution.

1. Don’t go past boundaries with your boss

Your manager maybe all fun and games, but at the end of the day, they are still your boss. You can casually speak your mind and be frank about a lot of things and also, seek experienced advice from them. It’s healthy. However, what you need to keep in mind is what you choose to discuss with your boss. Quick comments or controversial, opinionated discussions can make your boss see you in a different light, and in the process, you may lose respect in their eyes. This also applies when you’re submitting work materials or reports. Being way too friendly in that aspect can threaten your stature in the office.

2. Cliques are for middle-schoolers

Work-group friends are a common sight in offices. Whether during office lunchtimes or while catching a quick coffee break. People of similar interest always bond quickly and hence form groups. It’s usual. However, don’t be picky while choosing your work friends. If you don’t show any effort to bond with others as well, that will only portray you as a middle schooler who used to form tight cliques just for fun. This will not only alienate you from other colleagues, but there’s a high possibility that they may start disliking you, making your job harder in the process. So, it’s wise to sometimes start a short conversation with others as well, to not make them feel left out.

3. Be considerate

Workplaces consist of people varying from different places to different lifestyles. Some may stay in the same neighbourhood and are married, while others are more party-goers. So, it’s very important to consider everybody’s time and schedule while trying to picture a get-together. Everybody wants to hang out but can’t sometimes because they are bound to their daily schedule s or priorities. Be flexible and considerate instead of saying that you can’t adjust according to their needs. For example, if you’re planning an event, make sure you pick a time that is convenient for everyone especially the ones that are married and have kids because they have a greater responsibility at home too.

4. Don’t rush to make bonds

Before you start planning social events and parties with them, make sure they know your potential as a hard worker in the office as well. If you haven’t established your stature in the office in the first few months and still invite your work friends over, it’s not advisable as, to be honest, they can see as a desperate person. Hence, enhance your reputation first and then start indulging more often. It’s safe to say that when you’re 3 drinks down. However, if you rush to make friends and do not give it time, it may result in invaluable friendships. So be wise and take careful steps in the beginning.

5. Be yourself

In order to blend into the office environment, you may feel urges to act according to other colleagues and superiors. You may feel inclined to act a certain way to effortlessly mix in with the company culture. But, the golden rule in friendship always stands by. Always be yourself. Pretending to be someone else can be exhausting and can drain your energy as well. Instead, be yourself, speak up about your views and opinions and put forward your tastes and dislikes. Some may oppose to that but others may appreciate you for being brave about being yourself. Many will like you for you. You’ll then definitely develop some real, honest friendships.

Abide by these simple rules and you won’t have problems in connecting with your work colleagues, because ultimately they make your day easier and your job bearable.