This morning I woke up with an extremely sore throat, but no other flu symptoms. After looking it up on Web MD I concluded that I had a number of life threatening illnesses, but since it just felt like a sore throat I decided to go into work anyway. Boy, what a mistake. By lunchtime my nose was runny and sniffly, my throat was even worse, and any of our customers who had the nerve to come to receptionist had death secretly wished upon them. (Look, I’ve never said I was a good person.)
Since I already committed to coming to work, I decided to stay and try and fight the flu instead. I’ll be honest: I still feel awful, but at least I’ve stopped death glaring anybody who walks past me. Well, most of them.
So here’s my semi-helpful tips to fight the flu at work:
- Hot tea. There’s no shame in making yourself a drink every hour, especially when it’s provided for free in the office kitchen (assuming you work in an office). It’s also a good way to try and infect as many other coworkers as you can on your journey to and from the kitchen. Sneeze all over that coworker who gave you a dirty look yesterday morning.
(Please don’t take that seriously. I wouldn’t recommend sneezing on your coworkers… unless they were a real ass.)
- Good quality tissues. Honestly, I know the thought of spending more money than necessary on tissues, of all things, is painful. I normally wouldn’t bother, if I was just buying a box to keep in the bathroom at home or something. But when you’re sick, there’s nothing worse than repeatedly needing to blow and wipe your nose with something that feels like sandpaper. Adding a sore nose to the equation when you’re already feeling lousy is something that could so easily be avoided just by spending a few extra dollars.
- Water, and lots of it. This is such an easy one, I wasn’t going to include it. I just didn’t want comments saying “you missed the most obvious one! Idiot!” I’m totally kidding – none of you have ever spoken to me like that, even though I probably deserve it at times. Just not right now, because I’m fragile, and have a lot of used tissues I could anonymously send you in the mail. Anywaaay, I digress. Keep the biggest water bottle you can find at your desk, or register, wherever you are – and drink it! It’s so important to keep your body hydrated when you’re unwell (well, at any time really!) I have to remind myself to drink it when I’m sick, because I just don’t feel like it. There are actually apps you can get to help you keep track of your water intake – Waterlogged is one I use! I also usually like to buy a bottle of orange juice when I’m feeling lousy – the pulpier the better!
- Cough medicine, sore throat lozenges, painkillers, etc. I actually keep a little stash of each of these in my desk drawer, just in case. It’s so handy, especially if you don’t have a job where you can just pop out to buy any of these things (I do, but I’m lazy.)
- Soup. Another obvious one – but not really. Even though I enjoy soup, I very rarely crave it. Which means it’s not something that I would think of packing for lunch to have at work. However, I’ve started keeping a couple of sachets in my desk drawer for those days when I come down with something unexpectedly. It’s amazing how much better a good chicken noodle soup will make you feel. Trust me – even though you’re feeling as fresh as a daisy right now, go and buy some sachets of soup for when you’re not.
What are your top 5 remedies for when you’re sick at work?