I never knew there existed a term that actually described my work buddy perfectly, work wife – Cathy. Well of course, mine was a female, so “wife” she was, but if you have a male special work buddy, he is your “work husband.” Might sound hilarious, but makes so much sense!
I had no idea how difficult life could become without your work wife (or husband). But I came to this realization when Cathy had to leave the job for a better offer. I am very happy for her! However, it has left me lonesome!
My Work Wife
My name is Eric. Living and working in NYC has its weight and being an editorial assistant in one of the leading publishing companies adds up even more pressure to it. Cathy was my cube-mate. With neither of us particularly feeling motivated, we just had each other to scale through every day. I missed her very much whenever my work wife was away from the office. Those days were especially a drag.
Cathy and I talked about everything related to work. We confided in each other about any professional matters or difficulties and consulted one another over rumored and accurate workplace gossip. Besides, we confided in each other about our personal relationships, as well as openly condemned our managers and editors whenever they ticked us off. We could comfortably talk about anything at all.
Over time, Cathy transitioned to several other posts and eventually decided to leave the company when she got a better offer. I felt very happy for her but sad for myself. I only kept thinking of one thing; “how will I be able to go on in this firm without my work partner?”
I had nothing to motivate and push my limits anymore. Having Cathy next to my cube meant I could hop up to her, get ideas, and help over a task. My work wife was a big part of the reason why I loved my job and coming to work every morning. We treasured our friendship regardless of the job.
Anyone who’s been in such a relationship or has a work spouse would be able to relate to how it feels. You might have the job of your dreams, but the presence of that one person would make it so much better.
S/he always looks out for you
Running late for project completion? Missed breakfast and need to grab a quick bagel on a Monday morning? Can’t miss an urgent call from home or some prior matter during the peak office hour? Your work wife (or husband) will step right in and cover up for you. S/he will always be there for you in more ways than you can think possible.
Besides that, your best bud will back you up when things get rough at work, and when you need an urgent helping hand, and a good old pat on the back to remind you that you’re doing just fine or to hang in there.
S/he becomes your censor voice when necessary and required
At one point or another, we all face a situation when someone pisses us off so badly that we impulsively sit down to type a nice detailed email expressing our frustration. However, just when we are about to hit the send button, we pause a moment because we have a gut feeling to get the mail cross-checked once.
We save the draft and head up to our best buddy to ask his/her opinion. Mostly (or you can say almost always), whenever we draft such messages in the heat of the moment, we don’t necessarily use the right choice of words. Our anger often drives us at such times. Our best bet then is to run the message by that trusted colleague, who will most likely advise us to cool it off and revise it or perhaps even hit the delete button to save ourselves the agony of facing inevitable regret later on.
Nobody likes the idea of being censored, especially when you are frustrated and not having one of your proudest moments. Your work husband or wife’s swooping in at the right minute will save you a great deal – and perhaps your job as well.
S/he helps you stay real and focused at the same time
It feels great to be able to be yourself around colleagues and sometimes even around your boss. However, it often happens that in an effort to try to be professional all the time, you might end up holding back expressing yourself effectively. Now if you have a work spouse, life gets easier. You can freely express yourself. Your best pal may even help you think of a good strategy on how best to approach or respond to a certain matter.
Need to vent off frustration about your dysfunctional family? Stressed over not being able to pay off your student or mortgage loan payments on time? Taken aback by the sudden engagement post of your ex on Facebook? These are things you possibly cannot discuss or share with a boss or other random colleagues. However, your work wife or work spouse will be the best person to listen to you, give you advice, and to help pull you back to work and stay focused once you’re done venting.
Little Things Matter
More often than not, the little things and gestures make a great difference when you are working under pressure. In jobs when you constantly have to work for very long hours, are nervous about new or particular roles or tasks, are stressed about meeting deadlines for big projects – a consoling and supporting gesture from that best buddy will help you go a long way.
Being friends with everyone at your workplace is a good thing, but not practical. You can never open up to each-and-every one of them. You cannot freely share your innermost thoughts with every colleague. A work spouse is what you need. You will not enjoy your professional life and workplace fully until you have a work wife or husband.
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