WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU REALIZE YOU’RE SABOTAGING SOMEONE TO GET AHEAD

With all the rhetoric about leaning in, it can be easy to forget, as women, we’re meant to lean in together. The leaning in expert, Sheryl Sandberg, acknowledges that we can’t do it alone or at the expense of other women. You’ve probably already devoured Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead (and if you haven’t – you should!), but we think the COO of Facebook says it best when she wrote, “The more women help one another, the more we help ourselves. Acting like a coalition truly does produce results.”

We all want to be successful, and more and more we’re being empowered to do so. Which is great! We’re all about collecting personal achievements and #LadyBragging until the sun comes up. But what do we do when we realize we’ve been sabotaging another woman in order to get ahead?

There are many situations in which you may be unknowingly harming a colleague’s potential to be successful. In the fight to break the glass ceiling, it can be easy to develop tunnel vision on the path to your own success. Maybe you’ve been focusing so much on your own professional development that the development of a mentee has fallen to the wayside. Maybe you keep talking over a peer at important meetings. Or maybe, you’ve found yourself in the habit of gossiping about other women in your professional network. Whatever your slip-up, it’s good you’ve recognized the issue and want to make amends.

There are many ways to help other women in your workplace or professional network, but here are just a few:

LEVERAGE YOUR NETWORK

Introducing a colleague or a mentee to someone important in your professional network is a great way to help them. Our CEO and Co-founder Olivia always advocates for the importance of a good network and knowing how to use it. Helping someone make important connections could do wonders for their career in the future.

OFFER ADVICE

Even if no one asks you explicitly, your experience and knowledge is valuable information to spread. Don’t be stingy with the advice! We all have so much to learn from each other and we should not only be open to listening, but also to sharing. One of my favorite things that we do at VINA is sharing important reading materials that we come across on a day to day basis. If we read something informative about marketing, app development, or social media, we share it with the whole team! Spreading the wealth of knowledge is one of the greatest assets we have as a coalition of women.

STOP THE GOSSIP

One of the things most detrimental to women in the workplace is unnecessary gossip. According to Sandberg, successful women are disliked by both men and other women. Do what you can to change that! Step in when you hear people spreading negative stories about a female colleague and don’t perpetuate any rumors or bad thoughts you hear. In fact, try making it a rule to say one nice thing about a colleague every day! You don’t just have to #LadyBrag for yourself, you can celebrate your peers’ successes too.

(Feature image via careergirldaily.com)

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOUR BFF STEALS YOUR STYLE

My advice: celebrate it!

In fifth grade, I had what I thought was the coolest, most unique lunch box. I was really proud of it. Little did I know, my dad simply bought the cheapest option at Target and probably thousands of little girls had the same exact one. So when my best friend showed up the next week toting the same bag, I was furious! Granted, I was an obnoxious 10-year-old with absolutely no handle on my emotions, but I really thought she was stealing my thunder. Since then, as the grown woman I am (insert eye roll here), I’ve come to realize:

A. You gotta do you. Regardless of what other people are doing, including your besties.

B. Competing with your vinas is both futile and exhausting. We should we lifting each other up, not tearing each other down for the little things.

When your bestie “steals” your style, take it as a compliment! I’m even all for planning matching outfits with my vinas. Just the other day, I went shopping with a couple girls I met on Hey! Vina, and two of us ended up buying the same shirt. Hey, it looked great on us both, and we decided to rock it together one day (for the ‘gram, of course).

Now, this isn’t to say that you shouldn’t have your own personal flair (for example, I’m very, very proud of my assorted pin collection), but you can celebrate when your vina likes something you’ve worn so much that she goes and picks one up for herself. What’s that age-old adage? Oh yeah, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. 👯

What are your thoughts on having a style twin?

(Feature image via @tess_and_sarah)

WHICH OLYMPIC VINAS WOULD WE SWIPE RIGHT FOR?

Fierce females are dominating the Olympics in Rio – not only in medal count but in flawless performance and execution. While we have a thing or two to say about the caliber of broadcast commentary on female competitors (Refinery29 is a great mouthpiece for this), our focus is on celebrating these aspirational women, the many reasons we love them and daydreaming what their Hey! Vina 5 emojis might be.

Swiping right on these vinas:

SIMONE BILES – GYMNASTICS

What her 5 emojis might be: 🙌🏾💪🏾👯🏅💯

Commentators once called her the Serena Williams of gymnastics. Even the folks at Quartz philosophized whether engineered robots can outscore Simone Biles, since no competitor comes close. What we really love about this 17-year-old American prodigy is that she is a role model for a new generation of American girls who believe that gymnastics can be for anyone.

KERRI WALSH JENNINGS – BEACH VOLLEYBALL

What her 5 emojis might be: 🏐👋🏻🏖😎🇺🇸

Um, it took Kerri Walsh Jennings and April Ross only two sets and under 40 minutes to finish the game against China this week. As a three-time gold medalist at 37, this beach volleyball athlete doesn’t believe in slowing down. Kerri Walsh Jennings is the mentor vina to aspire to and learn from. She doesn’t allow for age to be a mental or physical limitation, which is dangerous in a sport dominated by 20-somethings.

IBTIHAJ MUHAMMAD – FENCING

What her emojis might be: 💅🏾🗡🕶🙏🏾👑

What’s not to love about Ibtihaj? As the no. 2 fencer in the U.S. and no. 12 in the world, her exceptional talent in the sport is a given, but she is redefining the Olympic identity as the first U.S. athlete to compete in a hijab. Plus, she has fenced with Michelle Obama (with foam sabers) and has a fierce nail game on Instagram.

MAYA DIRADO – SWIMMING

What her emojis might be: 😆🏊🏡💼💸

For those seeking a level-headed vina with a wide array of talents, Maya DiRado is your gal. Abundantly gifted with two medals in Rio at 23, she could have a long career in swimming, but is retiring after this year’s games. Maya is looking to pursue a life outside of the Olympic pool. With a job at consulting firm McKinsey and Company and a new home waiting for her in Atlanta, she is really good at making her dreams come true.

FLÁVIA SARAIVA – GYMNASTICS

What her emojis might be: 💃🌺🌼🙋🏽🔥

Our internet consumption lives and breathes gymnastics during Olympics season, so it felt appropriate to top off this list with a small and mighty vina who has won the hearts of a big host country. This 4’4” Brazilian gymnast is a powerhouse beam and floor performer whose spirited routines have made her a household name. Active on Instagram and Snapchat, the flower crown filter is a clear favorite –  but really, whose isn’t? Her mantra is nunca desista, or never give up.

(Featured image via si.com)

THESE YOUTUBE BFFS PROVE TECH + FRIENDSHIP GO TOGETHER

Tech and friendship go hand in hand, like avocado and toast or free Costco samples and me on a Sunday afternoon. Innovations in this space have allowed for bicoastal friends to keep in touch or for transplants to find friends in a new city. On Hey! Vina, a swipe right could mean meeting your future maid-of-honor or your next co-founder. In terms of creating a digital space for BFFs, YouTube is also a go-to channel to broadcast your friendship.

By browsing hours of videos from YouTube’s most famous friends (my job is the best), I learned a few important insights about friendship in a digital world. Here are three ways to use tech to keep your friendship 💯:

DOCUMENT YOUR ADVENTURES TOGETHER: TO THE 9S – CASSIE & RICCI

Don’t be shy! Brag about the things that you love to do together. Do it creatively – chase down your city’s best wall art, and remember that laughter is the best soundtrack to your video. To The 9s’ Cassie and Ricci show us that sharing your favorite activities on your social channels can be a way to say that your friendship is here to stay.

TEACH OTHERS TOGETHER: THE SORRY GIRLS – KELSEY & BECKY

Share common passions? Collaborate together to teach an online community how to make/do/say anything. If two heads are better than one, two crafty friends – like Kelsey and Becky – can teach anyone how to make a DIY puppy tent or another glass terrarium (even people who have multiple Pinterest Fails under their belts like me).

CELEBRATE YOUR DIFFERENCES TOGETHER: THE FASHION CITIZEN – STEPH & MELISSA

Even twins Steph and Melissa know the importance of being individuals and celebrating each other’s differences in any friendship. The Fashion Citizen videos are dreamy mashups of this BFF duo’s varying fashion POVs and personal anecdotes. While the world might see your friendship as a two for one deal, creating a separate digital presence is how you can define your connection as exponentially special.

(Featured image via @tess_and_sarah)

VINA BOOK CLUB: 5 AUGUST BOOKS TO SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS

Here in VINA HQ and beyond, vinas are reading the summer away – whether jetsetting to a new destination or commuting in for work everyday. The connection with a good book reminds us of the adventure of discovering a new friend. In today’s roundup, we have our top 5 August reads to share with your vinas. From your right-brain bestie who can’t put down Lean In to your extraverted BFF who is all over celebrity cookbooks, we have a book recommendation for every vina in your life:

1. FOR YOUR FOODIE VINA: CRAVINGS BY CHRISSY TEIGEN

Chrissy Teigen’s take on motherhood on Twitter is 140 characters of hilarity and #coolmom goals. Her cookbook is a delicious extension of that same homemade Chrissy Teigen brand – perfect for the vina who can’t get enough of celebrity gossip on Snapchat and has Google Alerts for the Kardashians. Another thing that we love about Cravings? It doesn’t try to take itself too seriously. Her recipe of French Toast Casserole with Salted Frosted Flakes recipe can be made by anyone, even our middle school selves.

2. FOR YOUR #WOKE VINA: WE WERE FEMINISTS ONCE BY ANDI ZEISLER

Founder of Bitch Magazine and the original zine queen, Andi Zeisler, charts the history of feminism and empowerment in consumer culture, from Lena Dunham to Beyoncé to selling underwear as a feminist choice. This isn’t your average history book, vinas – Zeisler’s wit is spot on, and We Were Feminists Once will have you looking at internet culture in a new light.

3. FOR THE ADRENALINE JUNKIE VINA: THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN BY PAULA HAWKINS

Paula Hawkins’ psychological thriller is for the vina in your life who was absolutely “Gone, Girl” for Gone Girl, the best-selling novel and film. This novel and upcoming movie adaptation are made of the same stuff: the common themes of unreliable narrators and the aftermath of infidelity.

4. FOR YOUR GO-GETTER VINA: THE UPSIDE OF STRESS BY KELLY MCGONIGAL

Stress makes you better, faster, stronger. According to Stanford psychologist, Kelly McGonigal, this thing called stress can be perceived as a good thing, not just the unspeakable reason why we go to yoga class. Pass it along to your vina who is trying to take over the world with an Olympic body and as the perfect mother – all before noon.

5. FOR YOUR VINA WHO UNABASHEDLY LOVES TWILIGHT: ME BEFORE YOU BY JOJO MOYES

Yes, another book-turned-movie adaptation (it’s almost like we exclusively watch our books). It was just too hard to resist recommending Jojo Moyes’ love story on the power and limitations of falling in love. Grab some Kleenex – you and your vina will need it.

What’s your favorite book of the summer? Sharing is caring, vinas.

(Featured image via bloglovin.com)

THOUGHTFUL SOUVENIRS TO BRING HOME TO YOUR VINAS

For most of us, finding the time and/or money to book a flight far, far away is but a lofty dream. So if you do have the opportunity to travel, you are one lucky duckling. Feeling like doing something nice for your vinas back home? Get them something small, unique, and thoughtful along your travels. Trust us, they’ll appreciate the gesture (and be wayyyyy more willing to sit through your vacay slideshow when you get back).

Don’t know what types of gifts to get your gal-pals? Try out some of our ideas below:

FOR THE FOODIE

We all have the foodie friend. In fact, most of us probably are the foodie friend. Bring home a local, non-perishable delicacy for your food-loving BFF. Just make sure you leave room in your suitcase for some yummy goodies for yourself, too 😋.

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The online print store, Artifact Uprising, lets you print and send postcards with your own photos on them! The best way to personalize this gift, if you ask us.

FOR THE PHOTOG

Have an #instagood photographer in your squad? Inspire some wanderlust by sending them photographic postcards along your journey. They’ll appreciate the inspo and know you are thinking of them while you’re away.

FOR THE MUSICIAN

Every country (and even every city) has its own unique musical flair. Get a recommendation from a native of a good local band, make a trip to a music store, et voilá! You’ve got yourself the perfect souvenir for your musical songstress.

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This vintage Suka-Japanese bomber jacket, reminiscent of fashion from the 1940’s would make a great gift for your trendy friend. (via 86 Vintage)

FOR THE TREND-SETTER

Just like music, every place has its own style that contributes to its overall culture. Some cultures sell garments inspired by customs that go back generations. Your fashionable vinas will welcome an article of homegrown clothing that they can incorporate into their everyday style.

FOR THE HOMEMAKER

For the moms, the interior designers, or the ones that do it all, nothing could be better than some textiles or ceramics. We’re all on a hunt for pieces that make our homes unique and cozy. Bring home a handmade tapestry or a locally-made mug can add just the right touch to any home – all while supporting small business owners!

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via Etsy

FOR THE SENTIMENTALIST

There’s nothing sweeter than getting your sentimental friend something with a little heart and soul put into it. Your dewey-eyed friend will have tears in her eyes when you hand her a vile of sand from a far off beach, a heart-shaped stone from your romp in the forest, or handmade artwork with a story. The key here is effort and thought, not money.

(Feature image via krystalschlegel.com)

TRAVELING IS STRESSFUL, TRAVELING WITH YOUR VINAS 👯 DOESN’T HAVE TO BE

At twenty-two, my best friend and I decided to travel through western Europe together for seven weeks by train. It was the most incredibly eye-opening experience of my life, and I highly recommend this to anyone.

Around week five, we arrived late at night in Amsterdam after a grueling day of travel. We checked into our hostel only to find that the place was inhabitable. My friend flat out refused to stay the night, but I argued that we couldn’t afford to get a hotel so late and on budget. So, naturally, we fought: tired, hungry, homesick, and probably even a little sick of each other.

One of us even suggested that we stop speaking for a little bit, walk to the nearest bar and have a beer. We would resume our conversation, but only after the beer. We did exactly this. Halfway through the friendship-saving beverage, we looked at each other and laughed uncontrollably. The whole situation suddenly seemed hilarious. We met in the middle: we slept at the hostel, fully clothed on top of the bed, and booked a hotel the next day.

And from this, I’ve distilled my list of tips for traveling with your best friend:

1. MEET IN THE MIDDLE

There is a lot to be done and a lot to see and you will have to make some compromises along the way, if you feel yourself in a bind, be the one that decides to meet in the middle.

2. TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF

Just because you are traveling together doesn’t make you are joined at the hip. Every once in awhile you should do something on your own, even if it means just sitting at separate tables for coffee while you journal. Built-in solitude is essential.

3. PLAY INTO YOUR STRENGTHS

You are a team, so be a team. When my vina and I were traveling, we learned pretty quick that I was good at navigating transportation and she was really good at handling currencies. While it shouldn’t become your sole responsibility, it’s nice to know who has the reins and when.

4. TAKE PHOTOS OF EACH OTHER.

It’s really awesome to have pictures of your adventure when your travels are over. Make an effort to be each other’s personal photog, and let it be an equal effort. Also, take a selfies that you’re both in (brownie points for silly faces). 

5. FIND COMFORT IN SILENCE.

There was something about the silence that calmed us down and let us think about the other’s perspective. A vacation is a long time to talk nonstop, so find a comfortable silence in between the exciting moments. 

Be together, be present, and be a team. And most of all, enjoy the adventure!

(Featured image via hellosociety.com)

HOW TO FIND YOUR INNER #BOSSBABE AT A NEW WORKPLACE

Working at VINA is my first real job out of college. It’s exciting, but a much different experience than any job I’ve had before. Adjusting from previous internships where my main responsibility was making coffee to one where I am responsible for relatively high-profile essential content and digital assets has been, and continues to be, an invaluable learning experience.

It’s thrilling, really. On top of the increased sense of responsibility, I’ve also had to insert myself into a new working culture and figure out how to fit in. Honestly, it’s been a pretty easy transition at VINA HQ due to a fantastic, welcoming team and office culture, but I know for others it can be more difficult. Here’s what I’ve learned so far about how to easily adjust to a new workplace:

LEARN THE CULTURE

Whether you get the gist of it during on-boarding or you found out from your new desk-mate, make sure that you get a feel for the culture. Workplace culture encompasses everything from the office social life to the overall business values of your company. Even things like where and when people eat lunch, or how they communicate on a daily basis are important things to recognize and adjust to.  For me, learning to use Slack for questions and communication (versus email which is what I had been accustomed to) was a little bit of an adjustment! A month later, I realize we couldn’t operate the same way without this messaging system, and I’ve been using it for everything from urgent communications to mundane or silly notes. Making yourself familiar with the specifics of your new office culture will make the transition much, much easier. Be open to change, and enjoy getting to know your new workplace!

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MAKE YOUR SPACE YOUR OWN

When I started at VINA, I got my own desk (arranged in a cluster with two others). It had my computer and some digital accessories, but other than that, it was mine to decorate! Because I’m in a desk cluster with two other people, I wanted to keep my tchatkis to a minimum but still reflective of my personality. Making a space your own is so important – it helps you feel more at home, and it gives your coworkers a sneak peak into your style and personal flair!

I chose a picture of my mother, a little decorative box, and my favorite ceramic hand/crystal. All of them are small, so they don’t overwhelm my cluster-mates, but they’re enough to make me feel happy every time I look at them. I also brought in a little plant to add some green to our office, a benefit for everyone. If you’re sharing a space like me, make sure you keep your coworkers in mind, notice what they’ve brought in, and keep the decoration minimal and personal.

STAY ORGANIZED

There’s no doubt about it – starting a new job is stressful. Through the piles of paperwork, on-boarding documents and meetings, and new tasks or projects, a lot is thrown on your plate at once. Sure, it’s exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. One thing that has helped me stay on top of my work in the first month here at VINA was organizing my schedule and task list, communicating frequently with my supervisors, and managing my time effectively. The earlier you start organizing and developing your work flow, the easier the transition into your new position will be.

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STAY BUSY

This wasn’t true at VINA for me, but at past jobs, the first couple of weeks involved a lot of downtime. It could be that your new supervisor needs to decide and delegate work to you or that the projects you’ll be working on haven’t begun yet. Either way, try to keep yourself busy. Organize your calendar or agenda, set up necessary meetings, and get as much prep done as you can. Fill your downtime by being productive and getting to know people – you’ll have lots to do in no time!

(Featured image via carolinewhitephotography.com)

HOW TO TURN POKÉMON GO INTO A WORKOUT WITH VINAS

If you ever notice an uncommonly large group of Millennial vinas on their phones in a public space at an odd hour, chances are they are playing Pokémon Go. Pokémon Go is the augmented reality app that allows you to “catch ‘em all” (Pokémon) as you move about the world IRL. Since the only way to find new varieties of Pokémon is to actually go out and walk to places of interest, this hot new app is giving us another way to get active and an opportunity to meet new vinas.

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Via FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images

Here are three ways to catch ‘em all while catching a sweat with a friend:

1. INCUBATE AND HATCH YOUR EGGS AT THE SAME TIME.

Aside from Pokémon, you can find a good assortment of goodies at every Pokéstop, including eggs. Eggs contain both common and rare Pokemon, but can only be incubated and hatched when you walk a certain number of kilometers. Plan a vina date around incubating your 10km eggs together. You can even name your hatched Pokémon after each other!

2. GO ON ROUTINE WALKS TO WATCH POKÉMON TOGETHER.

If you have a favorite route with the maximum amount of Pokéstops in your neighborhood, share the journey with a vina. After a brisk walk, be sure to stop the ice cream parlor that doubles as a Pokémon gym. #TreatYourselves

3. USE THESE AUGMENTED REALITY SCREENSHOTS TO PRACTICE YOUR YOGA POSES.

One of the best parts of Pokémon Go is that you can take a picture of your catch with AR screenshots. Have fun practicing your yoga form by snapping your sun salutations next to Pikachu. Tap into your inner child’s pose!

Can’t get enough of catching ’em all? Share your favorite Pokémon Go tips!

(Featured image via vanityfair.it)

YOU KNOW IT’S TRUE – 5 TEXTS YOU’D ONLY SEND TO YOUR BFF

There are certain texts you only send to your closest friends because they’re either weird, silly, or annoying and only your besties would understand. We’re LOLing over these examples:

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1. THE INSIDE JOKE

This one is self-explanatory. Nobody but your BFF would understand it, and you don’t want anyone else to anyway.  It’s special, it’s secret, it’s yours.

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2. THE NOVEL

Your best friend is probably the only person who would tolerate a paragraph-long text. Everyone else would just be like: TL;DR. Let’s be real. If we weren’t meant to send the occasional text novel, Apple should’ve given us a character limit. Just sayin’.

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3. THE EMOJI-STORY

Your BFF is the only person who could interpret your emoji usage. She knows which emojis mean what to you, and she can easily translate that string of emojis that you sent her because she’s basically your brain-twin. Anyone else, however, would just think you fell into your phone screen.

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4. THE S.O.S.

Okay, we don’t mean an actual S.O.S. or emergency. In that case, you should probably call 911. We’re talking the “Help! I can’t stop thinking about it!“, the “I ordered too much take-out… help me eat it!“, or the “Get me outta this bad date!” texts.

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5. SHOWER THOUGHTS

Shower thoughts are those ideas or realizations that come to you when you’re in the shower, and you have nothing better to do than contemplate the universe and all it’s oddities and phenomena (or when you accidentally eat one of your roommate’s boyfriend’s “special” brownies). The average Jane may think they’re sort of silly, but your true bestie will think they’re just as mind-blowing as you.

What other kind of texts do you reserve just for your squad? Let us know in the comments!

(Featured image via mydomaine.com)