Out of Office: Stella, Her Brave Soul

Our Out of Office weekly feature profiles brave souls who have taken the plunge in balancing both a career in a 9-6 full time as well as pursuing a fulfilling travel lifestyle. Chat with me here if you're interested in collaborating. 

Highlight of my Japan trip during Spring Season: Aomori's Cherry Blossom Festival

Highlight of my Japan trip during Spring Season: Aomori's Cherry Blossom Festival

While devoting her days to managing their family business, Stella spends her nights carefully planning her next adventures and composing short stories. She is in love with hole-in-the-wall destinations and writes about her quests on her online journal Her Brave Soul.

1. Where do you work and what’s your role? 

I work in our family business. We are an authorised dealer of Japanese Agricultural Machines. My siblings and I pretty much do everything from Sales, Inventory and Resource Management. But I am more focused on the Finance and Spare Parts aspects of the business. While there are additional tasks that randomly comes up every day, I religiously act as the cashier and auditor. I also monitor stocks and availability of items in our store and branches outside of the town. 

2. Tell us something interesting about youRSELF people don’t know.

I am working on my second novelette (that I hope will be something that I won’t have a love-hate relationship anymore unlike the first).

3. How many trips do you take a year for leisure? 

I usually take at least three trips per year. I stay in the country/ area for at least a bit more than a week to maximise transportation (usually airfare). My random escapades are often prompted by seat sales but visiting families and friends are also one of the top reasons. (But seeing the cherry tree in person was my sole reason for visiting Japan during the first time.) 

4. What’s your most memorable moment on a short trip? 

At work.

At work.

My friend and I went to Cebu, Philippines and we only stayed there for 3 nights on February this year. I didn’t sign up for any extreme activities because I’ve always been a killjoy but when we got there, I found myself canyoneering (one time even without a life vest). We also rode a motorcycle on steep roads carved into the mountains. I dreaded it at first but eventually enjoyed because of the amazing view. It was one of the best trips I’ve had so far and I realised that it’s true when they say that the length of vacations doesn’t matter.

5. Why is travelling important to you? 

Our office is inside our home so I technically don’t log off from work that is why leaving for holidays for at least a week allows me to recharge. Sometimes, when you are too consumed with work, you forget that there are other things in life that you can do. Traveling makes me look forward to the future. It forces me to be brave and reckless and responsible all at once. Ultimately, it reminds me that I have a life to live fully. 

6. What’s the one thing you’ve learnt in your job that travelling won’t teach you? 

My job has made me realise that working as an employee will never make you rich. You have to own yourself and make big decisions to achieve your big dreams.

Traveling with your best friends should be on everyone's bucket list.

Traveling with your best friends should be on everyone's bucket list.

The Famous Kawasan Falls in Cebu is a must see for all kinds of travellers.

The Famous Kawasan Falls in Cebu is a must see for all kinds of travellers.

7. Conversely, what has travelling taught you that you won’t learn in your job? 

Only traveling taught me how to conquer my fears physically. I wouldn’t be able to go canyoneering or even snorkeling because of my job. Physical (and sometimes) mental activities that can only be exercised when you’re out of work are really some of the gems that traveling can offer.

8. What’s your #1 tip about how to maximise travel out of your hectic schedule? 

Work during work time. Don’t slack off. If you get your work done ASAP with the highest quality possible, you are not just going to be able to get the long holiday you want. You’ll also feel so happy about how much you deserve it because you didn’t have to compromise anything for the sake of being able to travel.

9. What goal are you hoping to achieve by end 2017? 

I want to be able to launch the travel related business that I’ve been cooking since January 1! *fingers crossed*

10. If you weren’t travelling what would you be doing at home? 

When not traveling, I usually draft storylines and create characters for my novels. I love writing and I want to learn how to improve it by practicing regularly.

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