Thank you for coming back for part 2!
Keep reading to learn more about Lynne’s faith and how she combines a busy homelife with business…
You are a follower of Jesus, does your faith play a part in your business life?
Absolutely. If you have found faith, I believe it should permeate everything you are and do – in a natural, beautiful, engaging way – not in a pushy, obnoxious way. A fundamental part of faith in God is ‘doing to others what you’d have them do to you’.
In business this means scrupulous honesty, professionalism, integrity, quality and service. Another fundamental part of faith is having a relationship with God and involving him in everything – big or small. I pray for my work all the time – for projects and people, for problems and goals and joys (with thanks!). I pray God uses me through my work and that it never becomes an ‘idol’ in my life (something I value more than his will). I seek and receive God’s direction. Sometimes a couple of us at work get together and pray – I enjoy that. A friend also painted me a beautiful piece of art for my office wall – ‘Wisdom’. It’s a colourful tree of life, with lush fruit, sparkling jewels, a dove and a book – and can be a talking piece for visitors. I love it and it’s a constant, humbling reminder that I walk by grace.
You are not only a Director and Chair at Access Economics, but you were involved in last year’s 2020 Summit, you’re a spokesperson for the ABC and a reviewer for the Medical Journal of Australia. You are an active member of a number of not-for-profit organisations, as well as having church commitments, four kids and a very busy husband…how do you fit it all in? How do you achieve balance in your busy life? Where do you get the energy to keep all of these things happening?
This is a FAQ! I think I was blessed in starting my family fairly young – it taught me to be efficient! Here are some efficiency tips I practise (they may not be for everyone).
- Organisation and prioritisation: Set up systems to manage things, especially your time. I love lists, rosters and Microsoft Outlook!
- Don’t do just one thing if you can do two or more at the same time.
- Don’t procrastinate – just do it (girlfriend 🙂 ).
- Do something hard every day. Soon you can stretch a lot further.
- Strategically outsource, including teaching your kids to help out with the household tasks.
- Plan to have balance. Schedule in the things you want to do (be realistic!) including special times, acts of service in your community, fun and togetherness, and keep them sacred.
- Like what you have (even if you don’t have what you like always). Enjoy what you do. I enjoy my church and not-for-profit activities – the latter overlap my professional interests. I also enjoy preparing food and even folding the washing! Joy is a choice and joy brings strength (=energy).
What strategies do you employ to deal with the inevitable stresses that come your way? Do you separate work and home life?
I like to always have my PDA with me so I can check email (even on holiday) and I have a laptop at home that synchronises with work, so my work and home environments are not separate. That’s how I like it, but I know other women and men who hate that – when they leave work, they want to leave work. I actually find it is less stressful to me to be able to respond to work issues as appropriate when I’m away from work, rather than coming back to a mountain. But it’s important then to enforce boundaries, and having a lot of non-work things in your life that you love doing prevents work from dominating. I’m fortunate in that in my job I am able to flexibly take time off during business hours to go to children’s events, appointments and also do non-work things, ensuring that I still get my work tasks done too.
I see the process as a blend, not a juggle. I think it’s important to let the kids know if I have a crunch point at work, and to mitigate by planning ahead so they don’t feel deprived – also by filling up their emotional tanks before and after with lots of quality time, cuddles, words of affirmation (whichever is their love language). That said, no-one is superwoman and sometimes I have to manage overly high expectations from work, family, others and (yes) myself.
What do you do to feed your soul and nurture yourself away from the business arena?
OK this is a long list! I like to take time out – ‘snack’ time out, ‘meal’ time out, and ‘feast’ time out. It’s physical, emotional and spiritual renewal time.
Snack time out might be driving to work singing and praying. Meal time out might be reading The Message with my husband in bed, going to church or going for a walk around the lake together. I run a lot in the mornings, and I like the outdoors – especially hiking, skiing and climbing mountains, and the beach and our pool in the summer with the family (I love water). We go on great holidays and learn about far-flung places, and those are ‘feast’ times out.
I find music very nurturing, listening to others’ music, playing violin/piano, and occasionally writing songs. I enjoy also painting and various types of art (my first business, actually, was making ceramics, when I was in primary school). I like growing things in my garden, and sharing meals and wine and good conversations with friends and family. I like movies and reading and dancing and I make conscious decisions to really sense things – to smell, touch, taste, listen and look. To pamper myself during hormonal/stressful times, I schedule a spa bath, a hair appointment, the occasional massage or pedicure, or a purchase from EziBuy.
But a real ‘tanking up’ for me is watching the sun rise and set (God’s daily show) or reflecting with him on the different moods of the sky and seasons of the landscape – particularly the colours of natural beauty.
And, this may sound odd, I think the best form of nurturing for me is making a difference in others’ lives – which is why I do what I do at work and home and in non-profit and other activities. So they nurture me too, as well as keeping me busy!
What do you want to be remembered for?
One of my favourite songs is Nicole Nordeman’s “Legacy”. It goes: ‘I want to leave a legacy, how will they remember me? Did I choose to love? Did I point to you enough to leave a mark on things? I want to leave an offering – a child of mercy and grace who blessed your name, unapologetically.” That’s me and, to be really honest, I don’t care if I am remembered or not on earth. I figure I have an audience of One, and when I die then what I long for is my Father’s arms and: ‘Well done, good and faithful servant’. I hope people can be blessed by my life and I can help others to find life.
My father died when I was a child and I don’t remember much of his funeral, but at my mother’s funeral, when I was a young adult, I was amazed by all the people who had been deeply touched by her life. She had chosen her own funeral songs and the last hymn was ‘How great thou art’. I will never forget how the last verse was sung: “When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation, and take me home – what joy shall fill my heart; then I shall bow, in humble adoration, and there proclaim: ‘my God how great thou art’.” It was triumphant, it was a celebration; the roof nearly came off that flower-filled church.
That’s how I want to die, and that is how I want to live. It is not about me. It’s about Someone much more important.
Thanks for sharing so candidly Lynne! I really appreciate you taking the time out of your busy schedule to talk to me so that I could share you with my readers. 🙂