Thursday, November 6, 2014

Keep The Faith

There are some things close to my heart which I'd like to share and even as it isn't a big deal when compared to other more serious events happening around us, I find it necessary to pen them down, to mark and remember this learning process that is currently still ongoing.. 
So bear with me and hopefully this will also be helpful for those of you who are going through something similar in your lives :')

The last two years were probably some of the most stressful years of my life, both in my personal and work spheres. 
I was at my lowest point in 2012, and genuinely felt the weight of this quote:  
"When we hit rock bottom, God is the rock at the bottom."

I am so incredibly thankful for angels in the form of my closest friends and family, who stood by and walked with me every step of the way. 
They spent countless nights and weekends with me, providing me comfort and companionship with their presence.
 Everyday I felt like I was waking up to a dark cloud hovering above me, and everything appeared bleak. It was a difficult time. And it took a lot for me to muster all my strength and trudge on, going in baby steps. 
I am also extremely grateful to all my readers and customers who took the time to drop me  a message and note of encouragement during those times :')

Last year was an extremely challenging year for me at work. Scaling down from four to two directors at Love, Bonito made it really tough to keep the company surging forward -- there was a lot of taking over of roles, scrambling around and tying up loose ends. Huge shoes to fill for sure. 
Countless times I have doubted my abilities to lead and grow the company, and I spent a great number of nights crying out to God for help. 

It was manic to say the least.. Thank God I didn't have much time to dwell in my unsettledness because time was precious and I tried to spend whatever free time from work there was to read up as much as possible, seek counsel from my pastor, and talk to successful and experienced business owners and leaders to gain as much insights. 

Having to co-manage Love, Bonito with Viola taught me the big difference between being an entrepreneur and being a great, solid leader. But thank God I learnt that leaders can be made and trained, phew! I devote my nights to reading relevant books, and they have really helped me in building confidence especially when I put into practice the invaluable things which I've learnt. 
I am thankful that God has given me these opportunities to grow and make mistakes, and learn from them. 

In the process, I've made so many self discoveries about new habits and disciplines that I need to instil, and those that had to be changed. 
For example, I used to be highly disorganized (better now by the grace of God!) and never really understood how frustrating it was to have to work with someone so untidy.. *gulps*
 And that's just one example!! I'm still ironing out other bad habits in my life :) 
Slowly but surely.. I know that I will get better. I have to!

 Everything happens for a reason. 
And I believe that there really is a reason for every season in our lives. 
Even as we may be forced to endure times that are hard and bleak, when everything seems insurmountable, we have to keep the positivity afloat. 
Keep the faith... the breakthrough will come. 
I know it's tough.. and it takes a whole lot of courage and discipline to focus on the positive, but that also helps us appreciate and be grateful for whatever we have in our lives. 

There have been so many times that I came close to throwing in the towel and giving up.. because of how inadequate I felt, in so many ways. 
But God continually assured me time and again.. I still remember one of the nights when I was crying out to Him, and was reminded of this quote: 
"God does not call the qualified. 
He qualifies the called."  
It left a deep impression on me, and till this day I hold on to it dearly.

I honestly don't believe I have the characteristics of a natural leader, and there are so many things for me to pick up and force myself to learn along the way!
 This is why the above quote resonates so strongly with me -- because I know that as long as I avail myself to Him (and I definitely have to), He will work His power in me and through me. 
And it begins with "going through the fire to be tested, purified and cleansed" from all our imperfections. 
It's an extremely uncomfortable and difficult process, having to face your flaws and weaknesses, and coming to terms with it in order to work on them.

These tough times have helped me to discover and see clearly my purpose in life, and made me much, much stronger - mentally, emotionally and spiritually. 
There is really nothing like finding your passion, knowing your purpose and working hard to achieve your dreams. 
Looking back, I am truly grateful for all the events (both good & bad) that have unraveled because without them, I wouldn't have had the chance to learn, mature and grow. 
Being in the situation and position that I was in, there really was only one way to go and one thing to do -
To trudge ahead without looking back. 

"Don't waste the season of life you are in now because you want the next one to come.
Live in the moment;
Every season has its purpose."

Whatever giants in your life you are facing, keep the faith and trudge on.
It will get better.
And one day, you will look back and realize that everything had to happen in order for you to be stronger and live to your fullest potential.

Let's press on :)


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

True White Style


I had the honour to work and shoot with acclaimed photographer Russel Wong and fashion blogger Andrea last month for a special Sensodyne shoot!


Meeting Russel was a humbling experience as I’d seen his works with Zhang Ziyi for Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon! 


We sat down and listened to Russel explain the idea and concept behind the shoot to capture the “True White Style” for Sensodyne. Everything was new and pretty foreign to me because I’ve never done anything quite like that, haha. So, it was finally time to get ready for our first shoot! And the theme for the first shoot is a Chinese sword-fighting scene.




Had so much fun shooting this and Russel was definitely very easy to work with. I’m not familiar with being in front of the camera much but he made me comfortable and feel at ease. 


The second shoot was one with Drea for an Ice Queen Scene - phew! (finally some company heh) We were dramatically made up to prepare for this and it was quite cool (literally too as we had a huge and strong fan blowing at us) having to imagine that we were on a sleigh riding through the snow!


What’s even more exciting is that all of you readers will get a chance to vote for your favourite theme which best captures the True White Style and stand to win amazing prizes!

Head on down to bit.ly/truewhitestyle for more pictures and information ;)

$('#divID img').each(function(){ $(this).addClass(600> 400 ? 'landscape' : 'portrait'); });