As of September 22nd, fall is officially here in Seattle.  Named one of the best fall escapes in the United States by National Geographic, Seattle boasts endless opportunities to enjoy the outdoors this time of year.  But if you are like many Seattle residents, you may be enjoying this season from behind a desk.  If that sounds like you, here are some guidelines to help you enjoy the fall season from your office.

Do:  Take advantage of seasonal favorites like the infamous Pumpkin Spice Latte.  There are few things that get me more excited about this time of year than a Starbucks seasonal beverage on a brisk fall morning.  Aside from being delicious, these fall inspired drinks can help you combat the seasonal exhaustion that is often associated with less sunlight and shorter days.

Don’t:  Bring fall inspired scents into the office.  Although you may love that apple pie scented wax warmer, it is best to leave any scented items at home.  While candles, sprays and wax warmers are relaxing for some, they can have an adverse reaction on your coworkers who may have scent sensitivities due to allergies or conditions like Multiple Chemical Sensitivity.  If you have a coworker or client with one of these conditions, a scented item can cause symptoms such as nausea, headaches, and an inability to focus, all of which lead to decreased productivity in the workplace.

Do:  Dress in layers.  If you live in Seattle, you know that fall weather in the Pacific Northwest is notoriously unpredictable.  One moment it’s a brisk fall day and the next it is pouring down rain, which is frustrating when you are trying to figure out what to wear.  If you want to avoid being too hot or too cold at work, dress in layers that can easily be taken off or added throughout the day.

Don’t:  Forget to leave a few minutes early for work.  Along with the weather, road conditions also change as we enter the fall season.  Rain, slippery roads and shortened daylight hours are the cause of longer commute times.  Leaving a few minutes early for work this fall will not only help you arrive on time, but leaving early could also prevent you from rushing to work and risking an accident.

Do:  Plan festive events that get the entire office involved.  There are so many fun ways to incorporate the season in office wide events.  For example, a fall themed potluck is a great way to build relationships with coworkers as well as sample some delicious food.  Another idea to get everyone in the office involved is to start an annual flag football game, open to everyone in the office and their families.

Don’t:  Touch the office thermostat.  As the days get colder, resist the urge to adjust the thermostat throughout the day.  Adjusting the heat is a distraction to your fellow employees, and can ultimately start a “thermostat war” where employees are more focused on changing the temperature in the office than their work.  Instead, remember to dress in layers and bring a space heater to put under your desk if you are a chronically cold person.

Do:  Give back to the community.  As the leaves begin to turn, kids across the city are starting another school year.  What better way to celebrate this season than to give back to the community by starting a school supply drive in the office?

Even though you may be stuck in your office or behind a desk this fall, these dos and don’ts will help you make the most of the season.