Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, recently published a list of 7 Tips For Avoiding an Office Affair.

I especially appreciated #4:

Never allow myself to have a “special friend” of the attractive sex (sometimes called a “work spouse”) to whom I turn for particular support. (This is sometimes called an “emotional affair.”)

I am not a naturally insecure person, but I am definitely grateful that my husband works in an all-male environment. Maintaining close “friendships” with members of the opposite sex is an area I think far too many people take too casually, sometimes with devastating consequences.

I also found #6 very insightful:

Imagine your spouse/partner as an audience – cc’d on the email, listening to the phone call, walking suddenly into the conference room. If you’d feel uncomfortable in that situation, you’ve crossed some line.

Whether you work in an office or just socialize with friends, I think imagining your spouse being present is a very helpful way to ensure you never “cross a line” in your relationships with members of the opposite sex.

What I find most intriguing about Rubin’s list is that it’s not an attempt to promote fidelity based on any kind of value system. Like all of her work, it’s based on happiness factors. Rubin specializes in figuring out what makes people happy.

And guess what? Fidelity does.

Read the whole list.