Office Distractions that Drive our Coworkers Crazy

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There’s no end to the things that annoy us about other people. The list of our coworkers’ frustrating habits could put our Sams Club shopping list to shame!  Of course this is all in good fun, but it is important to bear some of this stuff in mind so that your work environment isn’t something you or others dread.

Here are a few things to consider for the sake of your coworkers (and your reputation):

1. Your Health

While some people take every chance they can get to skip out on work, there are those who refuse to stay home, no matter what.  The bottom line is, if you’re truly sick…. stay home!  No one is focusing on how big a trooper you are for coming in or how devoted you are for peeling yourself out of bed when you have a horrendous cold.  They’re probably focused on staying away from you so that they don’t get sick and pass it on to others.  Sick days are there for a reason.  Don’t abuse them, but don’t go over the top and come to work when you should be resting up and getting out only to see your doctor.  Worst case scenario is that you come to work and get everyone else sick, and then it really puts a damper on progress.

2. Your Smell

This seems a little blunt, and that’s because the way you smell can really drive your coworkers up the wall if it’s bad.  If you’re all sitting together in a small, cramped space, this is even more of an issue.  If you’re a smoker, try to get the smell of smoke off of you before you return to the office, as this can be very irritating to peoples’ senses.  Also bear in mind how much perfume or cologne you put on.  What smells lovely to you might make someone else turn green in the face.  Finally, think twice before bringing really odorous foods into the office, or, try to enjoy them in a break room or outside.

3. Your Noise Level

Being noisy can really grate on your peers, so it’s important to be aware of this, in all of its different forms.  When you are on the phone, try to keep your voice down.  Sometimes turning down the volume on your receiver helps, as it will cause you to speak softer – just make sure you can still hear!  Also be aware of the way you move about the office.  It’s really obnoxious when someone stomps around noisily, without any regard for the people who are trying to concentrate.

Pay mind to the noise level of your various electronic devices as well – loud cell phones with one set ringtone (can you imagine listening to the same song over and over again?) and non-muted computers can set people’s teeth on edge.

4. Knuckle cracking

For the love of all things…please STOP this awful habit. Seriously, how many times can you crack your knuckles in the span of fifteen minutes? And no, don’t test it. It’s incredible and incredibly irritating.

Sometimes it’s hard to be on our best behavior at work – there are a myriad of other things to worry about, and it’s easy to slip into tunnel-vision mode where you aren’t really aware of the people around you.  Just try to pause a few times a day and keep yourself in check, and soon your bad habits will turn into good ones!

It’s time for you to sound off. Tell us your worst office/coworker pet-peeves that drive you or your colleagues up the wall!

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