14 pieces for your office emergency kit
When you spend most of your waking hours working, you need an office emergency kit.
The pieces your office emergency kit should contain.
1. Birth control and medication
Medication is likely something you need to take every day, especially if it’s birth control pills
It can be both stressful and annoying if you forget to take this at home, and either need to find a pharmacy, go back home or just skip a pill that particular day.
Just keep them at the office and remember to take them first thing in the morning along with your tea or coffee.
The same goes for painkillers and similar pills, they days you’rere stressed out and will likely need them the most, you may not have time to run out and fill your prescriptions.
2. Contact lenses
This one is obviously just for those who wear contacts or glasses. Keep an extra pair of either one at the office.
You may forget to put them on in the morning, or you can end up losing or damaging one during the day. Without your contacts, you are likely completely useless in front of the computer.
Don’t let this be the reason why you linked up two cells wrong. Your boss will have plenty of other opportunities to make this mistake, so do yourself a favor and always have a spare pair available.
3. Eye drops
This one goes without saying. Allnighters with dry eyes in front of the computer are hell, and it will likely give you an eye infection.
Spare yourself the trouble of having to drip antibiotics in your eyes for a week and moisturize regularly. I learned this the hard way the first time I spent a weekend on minimal sleep.
An office emergency kit just wouldn’t be complete without them. You wear high heels. You may kick your shoes off under your desk, but it will still hurt.
Some are lucky enough to have offices that stock up their toilettes with plenty of plasters for blisters, but they will likely be out the day you’re wearing a new pair of pumps and desperately need one. Life savers.
5. Nail file
Just start keeping this in your locker or by your desk right away.
I get annoyed when people make jokes about how “shallow” girls are for fixing their nails. When you spend so much time hammering away on your keyboard, you will break, tear and rip your nails.
It will be annoying to have to wait to get home before you can do anything about it, you will likely just tear up your nails further. And let’s face it, when you drop dead on your couch sometime after midnight, they nail file will be long forgotten.
Use the trip to the bathroom or wardrobe as an excuse to get some fresh air, and fix a problem at the same time.
6. Lip balm
I don’t think any woman (or man) needs to be reminded of this. Keep a quality lip balm at your desk, so your chapped lips won’t bother you, especially in the winter.
For hands, body or face. It can be helpful both for everyday use, but it also comes in handy when you’re staying the night, and your face feels cracked.
Of course, you shouldn’t use a hand cream on your face, but at least it’s better than not having anything around.
8. Sanitizing hand gel
For your hands, your phone(s), your desktop, your keyboard and anything else you put your filthy fingers on during the day.
I cringe when I forget to clean my keyboard for a while, and I start seeing little marks on the keys I hit most often.
The cleaner doesn’t go over your keyboard, and you’re likely eating your meals above it at least 50% of the time. Keep it sanitary.
9. Dry shampoo
The dry shampoo is a must for your office emergency kit. Time to wash your hair is likely one of the first things to go when you are busy.
The two things I stopped doing way back when I was a summer intern, was shaving my legs and washing my hair. It just took too much time, which you will rather spend sleeping.
No one will notice if you go two weeks without shaving your legs (maybe except for a boyfriend, but who have time for him when you cannot even find time to sleep), but your greasy hair will get noticed. Have a dry shampoo lying around somewhere in your office.
This one is not that essential. If you would like to restyle your hair, a brush and some hairspray is nice to have, but if you have space issues, this one may not be that important.
A lot of the essentials here come in handy if you have to spend the night at the office, and the toothbrush does as well.
However, I find it just as useful after lunch where you have half a salad stuck in your teeth. Or to use if you’re going out to meet friends (or even better, have a hot date), right after you leave the office in the evening. Your breath should not suffer just because you want a career.
I feel it would be redundant to explain this just after the toothbrush. The toothpaste is a close friend of the toothbrush – don’t force them to stay apart.
13. Compact mirror
Compact mirrors may again come back to having a salad (or beef) stuck in your teeth while you’re going into a meeting. It’s handy to have a mirror by your desk just so you can check if you are about to run into your boss’ office, or if you’re going into an important meeting with a client.
Can also be used if you need to check your contacts or anything else. It’s just genuinely nice to have.
They tear. It’s annoying, and you can’t stop it from happening. Just buy them in bulk and keep them in the wardrobe.
I have accumulated a lot more than this in my office over the years. A big part of my wardrobe is there permanently. Most of my pumps, and extra clothes (especially jackets and blouses that tend to get spilled on).
I even have a duplicate set of all the basic make-up items I use so I can re-apply it if I don’t find time to go home to sleep and change before a big pitch.
Gym clothes are also useful if you ever get the chance to pop out between meetings and work out. Read about how to find time for a workout in the middle of the week.
This collection is however what I would call a basic survival kit, and it’s small enough that it can fit snuggly in a make-up bag you can hide in a desk drawer or behind one of your screens.