Support at work and in life is incredibly important. We’ve written about the importance of friends at work before. Today, we want to share a bit more about our friendship! This past weekend, we celebrated my bachelorette and reminisced about our over 10 year old friendship so this felt like the right story to tell!
Katina and I met in graduate school. We were in our early (super early!) twenties. It was my first year of grad school and her second. I was very naive and she seemed like an old pro! I was actually intimidated by Katina a bit since she was so confident and smart. Lucky for me, however, she was so warm and accepting and we became fast friends.
Throughout grad school, Katina was the friend that was always down to disconnect and have some fun. She was such a hard worker but knew how to have fun and take time for non-school activities. Katina was an inspiration since she was incredibly successful at school and always seemed to have a thriving personal life. We would have dinners, go out to the bars in town, and have some relaxing evenings at home. But, we would also meet up to do work together. It was a great balance of both. Katina was also always there whenever I needed someone to complain about stress, the program, and challenges with a long distance relations. She gave good advice, was a great listener, and always tried to help. She was part of the amazing support system I was lucky to build while at Penn State.
Long Distance Friends
After Penn State, we went our separate ways pursuing our new careers. I moved to DC and Katina stayed in PA. A couple of years later, I moved back to CA, making the distance even greater between us. However, we were stayed friends and did our best to keep in touch. Remote friendships can be challenging to build and maintain but, with a little work, it is possible!
During the pre-Workr Beeing years, we had video chats every few months, saw each other at friends’ weddings (there were a lot!), and met up every year at the annual SIOP conference. When you have a long distance friend, effort is important. We both valued our friendship and put in that effort. We supported each other through thick and thin and it was definitely worth the effort!
But, we do want you to think through your friendships. Make sure it’s worth the effort! If you aren’t getting the support you need but are spending a lot of time on the relationship, it might not be worth it. Your time is valuable so make sure you are putting in effort with people that provide you the same support and care that you provide them.
During one of the many weddings we’ve attended together over the years, the idea of Workr Beeing was born and our friendship transformed. We are now the closest we’ve ever been. Starting a business with a great friend can be tricky but we have been aligned on pretty much everything. We have very similar goals and perspectives on life and work. Most importantly, we’ve stayed supportive of each other.
Entrepreneurs can often struggle with maintaining wellness and need to build strong support systems. Starting a business with a friend comes with a built-in support system and we couldn’t recommend it enough. When one of us is facing some challenges or swamped with other work, the other one can help pick up the slack. It’s also nice to have someone in the trenches that knows exactly what you are going through.
We also now get to see each other much more frequently. It’s amazing to spend quality time together as friends in addition to co-founders. Our retreats and trips are rewarding and fun! We make sure to not just get together for work stuff. Last weekend we enjoyed Temecula for my bachelorette and had a blast! Balance is key to maintain the friendship side of our relationship.
Why Our Story Matters
Personally, I think our story is a lovely one and I hope it continues to evolve along with Workr Beeing. But why does it matter to you? We hope it inspires you to focus on those important relationships in your life. Over the ten plus years we’ve known each other, our relationship has changed a lot.
It’s important to find your tribe and surround yourself with people that support you. Katina is a very important part of my tribe. Whether you meet someone at school, at work, or at the gym, nurturing those friendships can improve your well-being. As humans, we need connection. Don’t let work and other responsibilities detract from the time you need to build and maintain solid relationships. And, as we’ve written about before, don’t be afraid to build those relationships at work. We hope to inspire you to reach out and reconnect with people that matter or tell your friends how much you appreciate them.
We’d love to hear from you! Has this post inspired you to reach out to any of your good friends? Have you ever had a friend turn business partner/co-worker or vice versa? Tell us your stories!