Why workplace frenemies are our most stressful colleagues - Deepstash

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The Friend Who Is Also An Enemy


Why workplace frenemies are our most stressful colleagues

Why workplace frenemies are our most stressful colleagues



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Among immediate colleagues, it’s easy to spot two groups of people: genuine friends, who make each workday a little brighter; and sworn enemies – the people who will deliberately make your life hard for no reason. But what about all those people in the middle?

These colleagues ma...

There is no doubt true friends bring enormous benefits to our overall health and wellbeing. A huge scientific literature now shows our social connections can raise our self-esteem and help us to recover from stress more quickly. This not only reduces our risk of mental illness , but also reduces ...

If frenemies, in general, have been understudied, then their role in workplace politics is even less well understood. This is a shame, since many job environments may be particularly ripe for the creation and maintenance of ambivalent relationships. 

Organisations often force us int...

It is the sense of professional competition that injects negativity into the working relationship. You may find your colleague to be very likeable, for example, and you would happily go for a drink with them.

Yet you feel betrayed when they apply for the same promotion as you. It’s normal...

 A study questioned US retail employees about their colleagues. She found that the nature of the ambivalent relationships depended on people’s desires for closeness. The more people wanted to establish a connection with their frenemy, the more likely they were to both help and hinder their partne...

Your desire for closeness will amplify the ambivalent feelings.

And so, if you are starting to feel too stressed by the relationship, you might aim to become a bit more realistic in your expectations of what your frenemy will provide, without necessarily cutting them out of your life alto...

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