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.)
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.
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.
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.
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.
I mean, they might all be pandemic editions for a while, but here’s the first.
Best Purchase: These UGG Fluff Yeah Slides >>>
My super generous bosses got me gift cards for Administrative Professionals Day, so I bought these WFH quarantine slides! Now if these don’t put a smile on your face…*
*Thanks for the tip on these from my friend and stylist extraordinaire Natasha Petit. If you need a style overhaul, check out her site!
My grant writing side gig highlighted how complex and unwieldy getting goods and services to people in need can be, and at some point I pivoted from trying to secure money for nonprofits to being the one that delivered the money to the people in need. So this summer I started my own nonprofit foundation with the singular purpose of granting scholarships to Title 1 high school students in the Los Angeles area.
I have been going with a red lip more than usual in 2020, and yesterday I got a compliment about my lipstick. 99% of the time I go make-up free except for lip color, so in this area I exercise great discernment (read: I will spend). Finding the perfect red had been particularly challenging…until I went to Bite Lip Lab. I have posted about it before, but it’s been only in the past year or so that they opened a Larchmont Village location, so now it’s accessible to all my LA friends.