Empowering Women

Christy Ho on Striking Balance

CHristy Ho on Striking Balance

I’m sure that for most of us, there has been a time when we’ve felt like work was literally all you had time for. And when planning our schedules, we are often told to prioritise things of greatest importance, i.e. exams, deadlines, presentations, meetings, you name it. But with this, we often forget to set aside time for things like family, friends, hobbies, and most importantly, yourself.

Christy is your quintessential working woman; a Page Operations Analyst at Facebook Singapore, as well as a social media influencer, Christy’s plate is constantly filled to the brim (metaphorically, of course). And this month, we had the opportunity to chat with her to ask about how she juggles her work and her personal life, as well as gain a little insight into how she manages to stay on top of things while being able to take time out for herself.

Chen Wei: You have to manage both a full-time job, and a successful social media account. How do you keep up with your various commitments? Any tips on how to plan your schedule while making sure you have enough time for “play”?

Christy: I think firstly we need to ask ourselves whether we want to be a social media influencer (or whatever you’d prefer to call it) as a full time job or just as a hobby. Your choice really sets the tone for your life, and the choices you make moving forward. For me, I never wanted to be a blogger/instagrammer full time. I respect people who do, but at the same time I feel that life is more than social media. Life is an opportunity to learn, and to challenge yourself to be better than you were yesterday. My choice was to keep this as a hobby and pursue a conventional full time job as my career anchor. So making a clear distinction helps me craft my career goals and plot out paths to take to get there. Knowing your priorities really does the trick when allocating time for work and play. As for my schedule, I make it a point to free up my weekends to spend it with friends and loved ones 🙂 You’ll always find time for the ones that matter. I also don’t go to everything I’m invited to. It really needs to be something I like, or stand for. Consistent branding!

Chen Wei: Yes, that’s so true! But how do you stay motivated even when you have a ton of things on your plate? And is there a way you stay disciplined when motivation is in short supply?

Christy: Loved ones always motivate me. But personally, I focus on just being happy and satisfied with life. I think that’s important! Always remember that life online isn’t really life. We always need to remind ourselves to put down our gadgets and enjoy the moment as it happens. What’s the use of capturing a sunrise perfectly through your camera lens when you can do so with all five senses? It really boils down to choosing to be contented and chill. One step at a time, you know? To stay disciplined when motivation falls short, I just keep reminding myself that times can get tough but hang in there as there’ll always be something super rewarding once you make it pass this hurdle. And it’s not an empty promise to myself because it truly always does get better when times are bad!

Chen Wei: Yeah, it’s all about your personal choices, isn’t it? But there has to be an occasion when something doesn’t go your way, right? How do you deal with these obstacles? Is there anyone or anything you turn to for comfort?

Christy: Just like any other regular Joe, I get frustrated and angry. But talking to loved ones and spending time with that special someone is supppperrrrrr healing and does wonders to the soul. Keep yourselves surrounded by positivity and positive people. You’ll soon find that you’ll be much happier with your life than ever before.

Chen Wei:  Is there a line that you don’t cross in terms of work commitment? When do you put your foot down, and say no? And how would you do so in a diplomatic manner?

Christy: I think it really depends on the nature of the job. I used to work at a communications agency and we were really client-facing so work could end late or early – nothing was fixed. It’s enjoyable if you like the exposure! But I now work at at Facebook Singapore and the culture really supports a work/life balance so I don’t find situations where I need to put my foot down. However, if I ever needed to, I think we should never be afraid to strike a balance and let the other person know how important your other commitment is to you. Talking it out is much better than coming up with a lie.

Chen Wei: Yeah, that’s a really important point to make. We have to know how to communicate our priorities with others as well! Health-wise, are there any foods you recommend to help maintain your energy levels through the day, without having to chug coffee? Any tips on how to maintain your health with such a full schedule?

Christy: Haha, I’m the last person to come to for healthy eating advice. I’m not a fan of coffee, but I do run on sugar power. I need chocolate/candy boosts at various times during the day. But I do drink a lot of water! Again, priorities. In order to do what you love, you need to be healthy. So with that in mind, I now go to the gym 2-3 times a week just to sweat it out and that not only keeps me in shape but helps keep my mind off work. I can then later get back to my work with a fresh outlook and clearer mind!

Chen Wei: Hahah! Yeah, balance the sugar with the work outs, that’s a good technique! So what is something you do just for yourself though? What does your “me time” look like?

Christy: My ‘me time’ sees me sprawled across my bed, watching back-to-back episodes of ‘Big Bang Theory’, ‘Suits’ or ‘The Office’ – preferably in my jammies! I also like a good read with a cup of iced milo in hand. I also use my spare time to edit photos and plan when to upload what on my social media platforms 🙂

Chen Wei: Yes, watching TV in bed is the best feeling ever! Alright, thank you so much for sharing!

So you see, it’s all about achieving that delicate balance in life between work and play. We have to know how to choose what we spend our time on, instead of having them be dictated for us. Like Christy said, do things that you either like, or stand for. Filling your to-do lists with work or school related items may be efficient, but it’s equally as important to set aside time to do things you truly love too, even though they may be activities that others deem to be a “waste of time”. Always remember, taking time out for yourself is never a waste.

Christy is a fashion, beauty and lifestyle influencer based in Singapore, who works at Facebook as a Page Operations Analyst. Check out her Instagram account @christyfrisbee, and tumblr account!

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