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Balancing the Grind with Tammy Martin, Co-Founder & CIO at Wellbeing Network

Tammy Martin is the co-founder & CIO at Wellbeing Network, a digital media company specialising in brand, content, marketing, product and app development.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role? 

Back in 2010 my dreams were set solely on making it in the music industry. I was hit with two rounds of vocal surgery and it destroyed me that I was unable to sing for I didn’t know how long. I started looking for my next gig, wondering where I belonged or how I could align my skills into a professional job without dying inside over the daily grind.

My first introduction into Technology and startup culture was 2010 when I landed a gig at REA Group setting up finance systems in the Technology team, I then moved into running hackdays and tech events and all the fun stuff.

I was shocked when I discovered that work life could be so inspiring and exciting with limitless opportunities. It was the good old days where bean bags, hack days, innovation and kaikaku were the real deal.

I was fortunate enough to have some industry heavyweights Nigel Dalton CIO and Richard Durnall CTO take me under their wing and teach me the secret sauce to growing and scaling a high performance organisation and highly productive teams.

I jumped at the opportunity to work in that space myself. I was hooked. I find this type of work the most rewarding and I am equipped to help people discover their own pathways through creativity and problem solving. 

Fast forward to 2022 Wellbeing Network was born, a community and business I started with two of my great mates Rob and Lach. We are a business that exists to help people live their best lives and access life changing possibilities in the world of Technology.

I first met Rob when we landed ourselves on the same team at a big 4 bank coaching team. Lach and Rob have been friends since kids and when the three of us got together we knew there was some chemistry and drive to do great things so we got to work on our goals. 

Today we run a network of podcasts, content and media and also build products for people and use our expertise to consult in technology companies. 

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

I spent 12 years in Melbourne before moving to the Western Bay of Plenty in the North Island of NZ. 

Home is an avocado farm on the beach. Every morning I rise early and go and seek time in nature on the farm. If the weathers nice I take the kayak out. I don’t have any devices so I can spend time with my thoughts before I let the world in. 

Around 8am I head inside to make a fresh coffee and jump on my first meeting of the morning with Rob and Lach to start our weekly goal setting and planning. 

Once we have set ourselves up for the week I head off to the local gym in my little town for a quick workout before getting stuck into deep work or meetings for the day.

In the evening depending on the weather I will whip around and water the gardens over a glass of wine before getting instruments out and working on songwriting or jamming with my partner. 

3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine? 

We have set our organisation up to be fully remote so flexibility and being able to work from anywhere, any time is important to us. Now we are able to travel again. A mixture of working remotely and flying to Melbourne gives me the best of both worlds. 

4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

I think for me work life balance starts with mental space, if our minds are being clogged up with too much information to process and act on then things can become chaotic. This is why my quiet mornings before work are important to me to set myself up for a productive day where I am focusing on the right things. 

5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

A solid morning routine and striving for earlier nights is a game changer. I have set a lot of boundaries around what and when I use social media which keeps focused and clear on what I am doing. 

6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend? 

I love Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, she delves into life as a creative and the harsh expectations we put on ourselves to succeed in the creative world which resonates a lot with me. 

I also enjoy learning from researcher and writer Johan Hari, author of bestseller Lost Connections Joahn explores the world of mental health, meaning of life, connections and purpose.

I love how he blows a lot of the tales out of the water around the pharmaceutical and governmental systems that support medications.

In terms of podcasts I have had an awesome time recording the first season of my own podcast with my amazing co host and friend Michelle Grace Hunder a reputable Australian Music photographer. You’re Killing It! is a podcast for creatives by creatives where we unpack all sorts of topics to do with navigating life as a creative freelancer. 

7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without? 

Well firstly my harmonicas and my keyboard and then probably the rain app that puts me to sleep every night haha.

8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be? 

I find Gary Vee’s outlook on life interesting so would enjoy hearing what he has to say about that. 

9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

Being mindful of what your boundaries are is a real thing and you can’t always expect people to be operating on the same level as each other.

Setting clear expectations around work with your colleagues and family at home is important and lastly communicating openly rather than bottling things up is important for creating less friction in your life. 

I still have so much to learn but have started getting into the groove of operating a company from home and am enjoying it! I do miss those after work drinks at the local pub though hah. 

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About Author

Balance the Grind is a work-life balance publication on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.