Desk Dining for the Busy Professional


Any entrepreneur or business owner will tell you there are typically two types of meals. Lunch meetings at a restaurant and meals that happen at your desk.

Make no mistake, there are strategic planning skills involved when pulling off the look of casual eating and conversation while not offending or entirely grossing out your lunch meeting participants. Salads are an excellent choice, chicken wings are career death.

Desk dining has its own set of challenges. Food should not require two hands, or give you messy hands while typing or handling documents. Cheetos are obviously the devil.

While I am not recommending anyone should eat at their desk every day, more often than not it’s necessary. In my opinion, it's good to get away from your office and refuel your jets. Go find a beautiful shady area and people watch or scroll through your Facebook feed to chuckle at your friends who apparently became lawyers and political analyst overnight.

According to Shape magazine, 67 percent of office workers eat lunch at their desks. While most experts agree you are more likely to experience weight gain, smart choices can have the opposite effect. According to the City of Hope National Medical Center, if you switch out fast food for a handful of almonds at your desk for 6 months, you can lose 18% of your body weight.

For myself sometimes it's tough to look at taking time out of a packed day to chill out and have lunch. Sometimes a simple compromise can work, and I'll make a fresh fruit protein shake and have that at my desk while I work. I am also very much about good vibes in your workspace. It's hard to feel inspired when looking you're down at a plastic container holding last night's meatloaf.

Hummus and pita chips or red pepper slices give you the protein for brain food and are only a one hand operation. Salads are also another excellent choice.

Beyond what I have already gone over I have a few more basic rules of desk dining.

At no time while desk dining are you allowed to answer the phone. There is nothing ruder than chewing while talking on the phone. It comes out so much louder than you intend and often sounds like a creature. Bottom line Chewbacca, unless you are Liam Neeson and kidnappers are calling with the ransom info, let it go to voicemail.

If you are the first person a customer sees when entering the building, you may never eat at your desk, ever. This falls under the maitre d' clause. A maitre d' is the first person you see in a restaurant and if that guy isn't allowed to eat at his little podium, neither can you. Remember, working lunches should not be a daily thing. Cars have rest stops, computers have a hibernation mode, and office equipment has power save modes. If machines can't go at 100% all of the time and still function well, neither can you.



Jody Taylor is a former women's professional football player who also served as the Women's Professional Football League's Media Relations Director for seven years working with 52 teams nationwide and some of the largest media outlets in the nation. After hanging up her cleats she officially launched her own Public Relations, Marketing, and Talent Management firm, Sixty5 Media named after the jersey number she wore her entire football career. Taylor works with clients that range from small businesses to celebrities, recording artist, and professional athletes. Additionally, she serves as the Assistant Editor of What's Up Hollywood, is the lead Correspondent for San Diego's Bolt Report and writes as a guest journalist for five other national publications.