Joy Chua is the EVP – Strategy & Development at meldCX, a software company crafting customer experiences using AI and edge technologies.
What does self-care mean to you?
Self-care to me is about taking care of all aspects of my well-being, be it physical, mental and spiritual, so that I can be a healthier, happier individual.
I think sometimes what self-care is portrayed in the media can be all about the “me-time” and while that’s important, I also think that caring for yourself means treating yourself to luxuries in moderation [so no chocolate pastries everyday!] but also means other impactful life admin moments like making sure I take the time to have my meals prepared so I’m eating healthy through the work week and not eating take out food.
It’s really about making sure that I’m taking the time and effort to take care of myself so that I’m fit for duty to others.
How do you know when you’re feeling stressed or burnt out?
My energy levels drop very rapidly and I find it hard to concentrate for long periods of time. I also become super attached to my bed and more sleepy easily.
What bumps you off your self-care routine and how do you get back on course?
Things! There are so many things that can bump me off time for “me”. Being in the ICT space already ensures there is an accelerated working pace and being part of a global team also means that I’m getting pinged throughout most hours.
Setting priorities and working on a list is really important to me. It helps me also to set and forget – what are the issues I can deal with now, what can be done later in the week and what do I need to get back to.
My weekends are also really precious. I really take it as a time to reconnect with loved ones, read a book, and rest so that I can be back on course for a work week.
Where do you go for inspiration, ideas or tools for self-care?
As a proud Victorian, my local cafe is my second haven apart from home. It breaks up my routine, gives me a good cup of coffee as a pick me up and being around different people and different vibes also helps me with inspiration. I do a lot of my content writing for my organisation just sitting in a cafe near me and letting the creative juices flow.
Working in the ICT space also means I’m constantly surrounded by notifications on my phone or laptop. We usually use a minimum average of 6 messaging platforms to communicate with clients / partners / internally as a group so when it all gets a bit overwhelming, disconnecting and going for walks/ hikes in my area really helps too. I usually put my earphones in, listen to Spotify on the go and focus on just taking in my surroundings. Really importantly, I also mute all email / chats notifications for that period of time and get my me-time where I can let my thoughts run wild.
What do you think you need to improve in terms of your self-care practice?
Saying sorry when I don’t need to and being more comfortable with saying the word no. I think we are still very conditioned to feeling bad for setting boundaries for ourselves at work or in our personal lives. I sometimes second guess myself and think that I should take things on for the other person, instead of thinking about the “can I” and “will I” be able to take things on.
I also think that I could really improve on sleeping patterns. Regulating my schedule before bed and making sure that I’m getting enough hours of good REM sleep is my focus for 2022.
Before you go…
Self-Care is our new interview series exploring the different self-care routines and habits of people from all walks of life. Get in touch with us today if you’d like to talk about your self-care routine.