fruitful but revealing.

It’s been almost a month since I ventured back into the online space and it’s been such a fruitful time but also been a revealing time.

From a fruitfulness perspective, there was lots to be thankful for:

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A lot of these projects did not happen overnight rather have been in the works for up to 12 months i.e. the podcast however, the little surprises like partnering with Style Me Flowers, Brainy Box and even the opportunity with For Dignity were organic and happened naturally through relationships that had been built over the last 12-18 months.

For the most part, there was no stress in most of this as I honestly believed that the solid 7 weeks away from social media, living a quieter life created space for these things to grow. I think it’s when the word is less noisy, your body, mind and spirit has room to breathe – best place for creativity to flourish.

I found I came back a lot more settled in my spirit and having a clearer focus on what would be uplifting and what would be stressful.

The revealing aspect of this time really showed up towards the end of last week. I was mentally and emotionally exhausted after the Site of Hope relaunch event and I think it’s from the space of things being out of alignment, when you are just operating from “fumes”, that’s where things can get a bit “funky”.

Continue reading “fruitful but revealing.”

intentionality vs noise.

I started writing this on the weekend in the lead up to Easter Sunday…

Reflecting on the last 46 days, fasting from social media may seem like nothing compared to the sacrifice of one’s life on the cross, however, this period of “coming away” and “self-denial” has been eye-opening in so many ways. When there is less noise, the inner voice is heard more clearly and profoundly.  Some lessons can only ever be learnt away from the crowd in the quiet and stillness.

Initially, I had wanted to use the break from social media as a massive preparation time to launch things the moment I was back online however, quite soon into the fast, I felt the sense that this wasn’t what this period was supposed to be about.

It was supposed to be about rest, about just sitting and being recharged and refreshed in the presence of God. So, whilst there hasn’t been much “action” on the business front per say in the last 6 weeks and my previous Type-A self would have been screaming WHY??? as I pushed the pause button on some grand plans I had, lots of things have changed internally and externally in a beautiful way.

Continue reading “intentionality vs noise.”

a very different place.

About 6 weeks ago, I decided to take a break from social media as part of the Lenten season, preparing my heart for the remembrance of the death of Jesus on Good Friday and then the victorious resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday.

6 weeks ago the world was a very different place.

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Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-51235105

Despite not being as active on social media, it was hard not to be glued to my news feed and constantly refreshing the page to see what was the latest update on the pandemic our world is living through right now.

The world is not as it should be.

My heart breaks for the lives that ended too early and the families that will be forever scarred by this pandemic.

But the reality is, the world has not been as it should be for a long time.

Continue reading “a very different place.”

a call to less.

Last year I had the privilege of serving and attending The Justice Conference in Melbourne, Australia.

“Justice Conferences provide moments which serve the global biblical justice movement. Through national events these conferences bring together thousands of Christ-followers to live out the message of Jesus and transform their communities by making justice a way of life.” – About Page from The Justice Conference 

One of the sessions that deeply impacted me was the one facilitated by TEAR about THIS IS A RUBBISH CAMPAIGN.

It was shocking to realise and be confronted with the fact that Australians create more than 75 million cubic metres of plastic waste each year – that’s enough to cover the surface of a football pitch every five minutes.”

I realised that I needed to be part of the solution and have been actively trying to find ways to reduce the amount of plastics I use day to day (fun fact: we had family over a few weeks ago and we travelled to 3 different stores to try and find bamboo cutlery rather than use plastic knives and forks!).

Another helpful resource I plan to work my way through is: Less Plastic, More Life.

Continue reading “a call to less.”

6 years on.

On 19 February 2014, I signed my name on the Roll and was admitted as an Australian Legal Practitioner.

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Today, 6 years ago was my first day as a qualified lawyer.

My “career” started in insolvency and property law which I did not mind practising in but I was not really passionate about it. After 2 years, whilst thankful to LH for giving me a chance and for my mentor, AVC for training me up, I knew that if I wanted to pursue my passion in employment law, I would have to make a move.  And I did.

For the next (almost) 3 years, I finally got to work in the space that I’ve always wanted to work in, helping employees and employers with their workplace relations and employment law needs. I’m so thankful to my then mentor, ES for teaching me all I knew up until that point about that area of law and the partners of HL for giving me the opportunity to develop my skills in an area that was new to me. Continue reading “6 years on.”

strength through rest.

At the end of 2019, I could not wait to take a break from work, from my side business and from just the usual fast pace I had become accustomed to as my “normal”.

It was only until I slowed down enough to reflect on the past 12 months that I realised that I had been exhausted.

I had been operating at this low-level of fatigue for most of 2019 and even though I had slowly been making some changes in my life (i.e. starting to eat better, prioritising exercise and sleep), I knew I couldn’t just get back onto the hamster wheel again when the clock ticked over into 2020.

You can’t expect to do the same thing and get a different result.  

So out of character, I didn’t set any goals at the start of 2020.

Continue reading “strength through rest.”

Lunar New Year x Australia Day x Invasion Day

We are almost into a long weekend here in Australia for 2020.

It’s an interesting weekend as it brings together a few significant events.

Tomorrow is the first day of the Lunar New Year which I celebrate as part of my Vietnamese Chinese background (my parents come from Cantonese speaking families who lived in Vietnam up until the 1970s). I do enjoy the Lunar New Year as I love to gather with family and keep the Chinese traditions alive (it also gives me an opportunity to reset if things didn’t work out in the first month of the year).

The day after is Australia Day, the official national day of the country I was born and raised in. It marks the anniversary of the 1788 arrival of the First Fleet of British ships at Port Jackson in New South Wales. I love the fact that I call Australia home and I’m proud to be an Australian.

However, since attending The Justice Conference last year, I’ve become more acutely aware that Australia Day is also a day of mourning for our Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander brothers and sisters as it marks the day that their home was invaded and the English colonisers began the oppression of their people (Invasion Day).

So where does that leave us?

Continue reading “Lunar New Year x Australia Day x Invasion Day”

letting go.

It’s already two weeks into January 2020 and we still have some Christmas decorations and cards hanging around our home.

I’ve been hanging onto the holiday spirit for longer than I should and today the plan is to take them down at some point.

You can’t move into the next season if you still are holding onto things from the old.

Yesterday, a conversation with a dear friend made me realise that I’ve been hanging onto other things longer than I should as well.

Things I find hard to let go of are friendships.

The kind where you were so close for a season of your life, you shared your heart and soul with the other person and your heart just feels so thankful for them… but life happens and people move further away or life just gets busy, and your regular daily/weekly contact changes to wishing them happy birthday on Facebook once a year.

You know what I’m talking about, right?

But, as I’ve come to realise, friendships sometimes have an expiration date. It’s ok for some friendships to die away and to allow things to take their natural course. Mourn, of course. But then when that is done, it’s time to let go and make room for the new.

Continue reading “letting go.”

Decade in Review – Part 1

We are two days away from 2020, the start of a new decade so it’s only appropriate to have a bit of a look back at the last 10 years and reflect on a few things or two. A lot has happened in the world in the last 10 years but I’m just going to be reflecting on my own slice of the world 🙂

I found Marie Forleo’s Decade in Review questions helpful for this analysis and tailored them to suit my thought process. I’ve gone through Section 1 below and depending on how I go, I’ll share the rest.

For now, I hope it inspires you to do a bit of reflection too and feel free to use these questions as well 🙂

Marie Foleo (MF) Section 1: What You’re Proud Of or Thankful For

  1. Over the past 10 years, what have you done that you’re proud of or thankful for
  2. What are the obstacles you’ve overcome? 
  3. What are some of the results you’ve created in your career or life since 2010?

2019 – Proud & Thankful

In 2019, I was proud that I continued with my small business including working with brands big or small such as Channel 10, NAB The Village, Metro Tunnel, Laneway Learning.  A few other highlights this year included attended a For King & Country concert, taking part in a Wedding & Party Expo, participating in Linkedin Local as a resident artist to name a few.

This year I also changed jobs which was a step of faith that has pushed me outside of my comfort zone. I also started serving on the music team at our local church which has been rewarding and fulfilling.  I also visited the US and Canada and met some of my Chicago relatives for the first time.

2019 Obstacles

It was challenging balancing a job that required an extra 1 hour commute each way with the side hustle, new church commitments and general life things = health suffered and I experienced an infection that forced me to start prioritising my own health and wellbeing again. After a few setbacks, I feel like I’m on track again or at least have a game plan to set boundaries around my time and energies – building healthy margins into my life and understanding the need for sabbath and rest. Continue reading “Decade in Review – Part 1”

a line in the sand.

It’s been a bit over two years now since we started attending RED Church as more than just a visitor. It’s been even longer since we felt the sense that this is where God would plant us in the short-to-long-term future.

Way before Eli popped “the question”, we knew that a day would come that we would need to face another question that many Christ-loving and following couples (who attend different churches) would face: Where would we go to church together?

For those who don’t see faith as a priority, it’s probably not such a big deal but for those who endeavour to live a life that mirrors the ways of Jesus – of love, justice and mercy, you’d know that finding a faith community to call home (if you don’t already come from the same community) is actually one of those big adult-life decisions that don’t necessarily come easily.

It’s essentially like deciding which country you want to live in when you both live in different countries. Yes, some parts of living would be the same but culturally each country is different. So is each church community.

Continue reading “a line in the sand.”