1. Switch on, switch off
Patsy looks for balance in everything – even within work. “I am passionate to a fault (some might say). It is a good balance that I am also very analytical – I am very numbers and data driven,” she explains.
“I love to work but love to spend time with my family as well.” And for someone who works more than 10 hours a day, she manages to do justice to both – and dinner with family tops the list.
“Home with my husband, son and the dog is very important,” says Patsy. Although it may seem regular to most, Patsy makes a conscious attempt to switch off. “Very often, people get home and bring their work and problems home. They forget to really enjoy the simple pleasures of just doing nothing but being home with loved ones.”
To that end, her weekends are dedicated to family and she makes sure to be mentally and physically present – from dinner dates every Friday with her husband, to family hikes to Singapore Botanic Gardens every Saturday with their dog in tow.
2. Make "me time" really count
Being in business means being on the pulse of things all the time: Patsy’s workday resumes after dinner when she also keeps up with industry news.
And to wind down: “I have my ‘ME’ time usually from midnight till about 2 or 3 am. That’s where I get to our dedicated gym room where I will do Pilates, then run for 45 minutes before stretching out on the spine corrector.”
Why such weird hours? Patsy claims that this peaceful time alone is when she is at her most creative to engage in critical thinking and strategising. A soak with Epsom salt and essential oil afterwards gives her just the calm she needs to retire for the day.
“I love to exercise, especially running. It gives me the energy and stamina to work very hard, and not be tired,” says Patsy. Always a beauty guru, she never misses her daily skincare regime and manages an “express mini facial” and a once-a-month pampering at DrSpa for body and face treatments.
3. Shape the future
Each person should assume responsibility for wellness in their own lives. “It begins with a conscious decision to shape a healthy lifestyle, and that can happen at any age or stage in life,” Patsy says.
“Looking and feeling your personal best is when your true inner beauty shines through and becomes outer beauty you can see.” And as they say, the universe will pitch in. With a future chock-a-block with plans, she has to take her own advice to heart.
Patsy sees herself busy travelling and expanding her business even five years hence, while finding time to paint, read and cook –“It is really very therapeutic to cook” – and play golf with her husband. As for exercise: It’s a given.
4. Off-site reboot
“The beauty of my job is that there is no typical day. I am travelling 40 per cent of the time, visiting the various markets Kipling is in,” says Vera. This means she needs to have a lot of discipline and prioritise wisely.
While staying on top of things is important, Vera believes in scheduling relaxation as and when she can. “I believe that despite the heavy travelling schedule for work, it is very important to still set aside time during my travels for some time to relax and do the things that I enjoy. My perfect time to relax would be to go for an early morning run or an evening massage. “
5. Spend time in nature
A nature lover, Vera relishes spending time in the mountains overseas and takes her time off to be among them whenever she gets the chance. “I am a mountain runner and this is also a good way to stay focused and never give up. Running gives me time to myself to relax my mind, and at the same time to exercise and stay fit. It is for me a perfect time to think, make decisions and balance out stress,” she says.
“Only if you are balanced, can you lead or be an inspiration to your team,” says Vera, who ensures that she does not reach a tipping point by listening to her body.
6. Listen, absorb, learn
When not being one with nature, Vera spends her free time with her daughter and son. “Spending quality time with them feels more fulfilling then ‘Me time’,” she reveals, adding that they help her in setting real priorities in life.
“I am quite a curious person and I love to learn new things. When you are curious in life, you start to look at things from various perspectives, and question the way things work.”
Topmost on her list is understanding how millennials think, and in that sense her children are a source of inspiration. Quality time chatting and showing interest in what’s important to them helps keep her in tune with the trends and the younger generation’s needs.
7. Take stock of your physical and mental welfare
“My life is hectic and can be tiring but it keeps me motivated and fulfilled,” says Angela, whose regular day involves meetings and internal discussions one after another. So, starting the day right is imperative – a good session at the cross trainer, which helps her relax her tense muscles and gather her thoughts for the day.
“I’m very conscious of my physical and mental well-being. ‘Me’ time allows me the breathing space to balance and refocus. That’s why I have my daily workout and two-hour exercise binge over the weekends.”
Her weekend time off also factors in sleepovers with her mum, watching movies and shopping online.
8. Zone out
“My strategy for work-life balance is to make what I love my work. But to unwind, I focus on the moments. When at work, my attention is completely on work, but otherwise, I zone out and focus on doing nothing,” says Angela.
That “nothing” to Angela is doing something that does not translate to any outcome – “simply doing what you want to do with no rhyme or reason,” she explains.
This could be anything from having her dogs chase her around the house, daydreaming on her couch or listening to music. “When I act on these, I feel I’m in control of my life, and not life being in control of me. This gives me a sense of my being and centers me. It is important to keep this balance and not let situations and other people get to me; else I become reactive.”