5 Things: COVID-19 Silver Linings

This time has been difficult for so many people. From a physical and mental health aspect, to an economic standpoint, COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on so many lives. This post doesn’t mean to minimize that real suffering, but rather to acknowledge unexpected blessings that I have experienced as a result of this shelter-in-place. It is also part of my spiritual practice to write a daily gratitude list, which helps adjust my attitude and keep me positive, and so it is important for me to recognize these moments. Hoping you are experiencing some silver linings as well.

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Five Things: WFH

I never ever thought I could do my job from home. My boss and I interact throughout the day, from me telling him who’s on the phone, to him dropping off work for me on my counter, to endless emails and print requests — all seemingly which required me to be in the office. Turns out not. So here are some notes from my new reality of WFH as a legal secretary. Not mentioned: The 2.5 hours per day of my life that I have gained back by not having to commute into the office. Low key I hope I never have to do it five days a week again.

(The painting is an original Ozz Franca who was famous for the Big Eyes paintings of the ‘70s. And I just put up the poster — it’s from the 2018 Boston Marathon Expo and lists every runner. Yup, my name is on there. It’s a reminder that I can do hard things.)

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Self-Care: Morning Routines

I am someone who thrives on routine, so to the extent I can keep mine during this uncertain time, it is a comfort. I am still running, working (from home), and having (online) contact with many of the people I would normally see throughout the week. This morning I shared with someone my morning routine and thought someone else might find it helpful, so here it is – photo of the page below. The benefits are that I start my day with a clearer mind and better mindset; it also keeps me current and gets rid of the clutter in my brain. It’s an integral part of my spiritual practice and a wonderful quiet time before I have to get up and GO. After posting mine on social media, I received a couple responses from women who shared their morning routines, so I have included those at the bottom. Would love to hear from you too.

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5 Things: Binge-Diversity-Traditions-Mail-Meat

A couple of these are from earlier in the year, but there’s no time limit on 5 Things, right?

Your Next Netflix Binge Series: “Kim’s Convenience.” It’s about a Korean family that owns a convenience store in Toronto and shows us their place in their community, as reflected through their relationships with their family, friends, and their customers. It is super funny. As an Asian-American it is rare for us to see our experiences shown on mainstream media, so this means a lot. Seeing us on TV really hits. Four seasons are available and it was just endorsed by Oprah’s magazine. ‘Nuff said.

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5 Things: Work Files

So as I mentioned in the About section, I work in a high-rise in the manufactured business district called Century City, and this day job pays me a ridiculous amount of money to basically answer phones and move emails around (yay graduate degree!). I know. I am so fortunate. Early in my career I struggled with this career choice because the word “secretary” is in my job title, and I come from an accomplished family of doctors, engineers, PhDs, and financial analysts/traders. I’ll put it this way, my brother had to explain his job to me twice, and I still didn’t really get it. (He used to sell derivatives…exactly.) But I have come to realize a deep gratitude for my job. My job has given me a significant amount of financial freedom, and since it doesn’t take up too much head space or time, I can pursue my extracurricular interests, which as you can see are v. important to me. In fact, one of them is the main subject of this blog. In addition, I enjoy the people I work with. I work for four attorneys — one of them for 23 years this August — and they are the best. Like I’ve never come into the office with a knot in my stomach knowing I was going to be stressed out by them because they’re jerks or have tempers. That is invaluable.

Now while I have been totally blessed by my work situation, my bosses have been saddled with a chronically tardy and indolent assistant. It’s a mystery to me too. Anyway, below are some snippets from my work life.

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Book Review: Who Thought This Was a Good Idea?

This was the book I finished right before all this went down. It’s a substantive read told in a light and engaging way and is recommended reading for young women just starting out in their careers or those interested in an inside glimpse at the Obama White House.

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Training Week: June 23 to June 30

Final week of June to end a 110-mile month. In a word, June was Consistent. I seemed to find my training rhythm and maintained increased intensity when necessary, and my weekly total miles for this month were 27, 28, 28, and 27. I mean. Read on for the details.

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Training Week: June 16 to June 22

This week ushered in the end of quarantine phase 1 (let’s be real, there’s gonna be a phase 2), and in this window — however long it lasts — I trained as if I will be racing in the fall. In fact, I did look up some races and put them in my calendar…just not ready to sign up for them. Anyway, there was a return heightened effort and focus in each workout. Read on for the details.

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Training Weeks: June 1-7 and June 8-15

It’s been a return to the old the past two weeks. While in quarantine the past two and a half months, I have been running 6 days a week, which is an extra day a week. This was for a couple reasons: (1) I needed the mental release of running that extra day; and (2) I used to take an active rest day of aqua jogging which is very close to running without the impact, but with the gyms closed, I couldn’t do that. Since I didn’t want to lose my running fitness, I decided to, well, run. Well that six day a week run thing came to an end in June, plus another little change. Read on for the details.

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