By Joie Goh

As the world hunkers down in their homes, we take a peek at how some of the WeBarre management team is navigating their new, inward-bound circumstances!

Anabel Chew

Our co-founder who’s living with her husband, helper and an active baby living IN her

Ever since this circuit breaker started, I’ve been SO busy! I was at first concerned what I’d do having to be at home all day, but as it turns out, I think I am actually working longer and harder. We had to close all four of our locations on 3 days notice, set up and move our entire business online in less than 5 days, prepare all the relevant communications, marketing materials, set up the backend system, train our team to teach classes online, troubleshoot, testing new grounds into the unknown… the list keeps growing! But it’s been nice being able to maximize my time more – rolling out of bed to teach a class, not having to commute and go straight from class to laptop and back to bed. Can’t complain!

Despite that, my day-to-day hasn’t changed too much for me. Before this, my day pretty much revolves around meetings, teaching classes, creating content, brainstorming and training our instructor team. Everything still runs the same now, except we’ve gone virtual.

Sometimes, I think challenges exist to see how much we can stretch ourselves and our capabilities – venturing into a virtual world that we have previously not known or tested is certainly a major challenge at this moment. Still, I’m humbled and proud of myself and our team for pulling this together. It’s also challenging not being able to see our friends and family. They keep us grounded!

To stay sane, I’ve been doing lots of meditation and mindfulness practice. I’m also catching up with friends via video calls, and keeping busy with work – I’ve got a couple of weeks to get everything sorted before I go on maternity leave! My husband and I have embarked on a mission to complete his 1800-piece LEGO set of a Porsche 911, and we are using this time to get the nursery set up.

This period has taught me that the only limits that exist are the ones we create for ourselves. Anything if possible if you set your mind and heart to it. In tough times, how quickly we pivot determines how quickly you can keep on going. At the end of the day, I don’t need to spend time with a big bunch of people to feel fulfilled. All that matters is that I have a good companion and a buddy for life to hang out with – and it helps that we have heaps of fun together.

Linda Tang

Our co-founder who’s living with her two doggies and helper

To be honest, the first week of the circuit breaker has definitely been quite stressful! Business-wise for WeBarre, we pivoted really fast. We want to make sure we were able to show up for our community, and everyone was so keen to continue to stay fit and strong and connected with us. So the first week was definitely a lot of adjusting and a lot of frantic energy as we tried to deliver the best online programme that we could. But now that we’ve had some time to settle in, I feel much calmer. Especially since I have put routines in place to help my mental wellness and to make sure I’m productive.

Before this happened, I would head out the door really quickly. My days were filled with back-to-back meetings and classes. Now, I have to be very intentional with my routines so I can differentiate when I’m working, and when I’m relaxing. In the mornings, I listen to piano classical music to wake up and then I spend some time being present with my dogs. Going to sleep, I would buffer in some time to read. It helps to shield my mind from the anxiety and to get a good night’s sleep. Also, being exposed to vitamin D and sunlight is so important. So I make it a point to go outside at least once a day, whether it’s to take my dogs for a walk or to go for a run. Or even just to reach my hand out the window just to feel the sunshine and the breeze!

Ironically, I thought that having to be isolated would be my greatest challenge, because I’m a very extroverted person! I can’t remember the last time I spent 24 hours at home, let alone every day. However, because work has been so busy, and because I’ve been so intentional with being productive, I actually haven’t felt that. I actually feel closer to some people in my life than ever because I’m able to have hour-long FaceTime conversations where I’m actually truly present and not having my attention pulled in different directions.

I’ve also been looking at new recipes to cook! Today I actually made a roasted avocado with egg and had it with toast. It was so yummy! It’s something I never had the chance to do so. I’m also trying to read more books and feed my soul. I’m learning a lot about the online workout world and new technology.

Joie Goh

Our brand communications manager and instructor who’s living with her new husband and their puppy

I’m a major homebody and I’m really enjoying this chance to stay in and away from the rest of the world. And I wish I could avoid leaving the house at all! However, because I’m currently living in a tiny studio apartment with my husband, there is no space for me to conduct WeBarre’s virtual classes from home. I married an artist, and his workspace is already more than half our apartment! Luckily, we had just bought a bigger place just a 5-minute stroll away. It was meant to be under renovation, but due to the circumstances, it’s been lying empty. So, I make the quick trek each morning over to my new place to shoot the live classes.

As a morning person who’s used to waking up early every day and teaching the sunrise classes, I’m grateful that I don’t have to alter my morning routine that much. In fact, I’m enjoying the extra 30 minutes I have each day compared to when I have to commute to our studios! I take the time to foam roll my entire body and sip on my morning coffee before heading out.

Surprisingly, my greatest challenge is maintaining my skincare discipline. This might sound vain, but when I had a busier schedule, my daily skincare routine kept me grounded and pampered because it was “me-time”. And if you know me, I’m all about my extensive and over-the-top skincare rituals! However, now that my days are essentially “me-time” all the time, my beauty regime doesn’t feel as deserved and rewarding any more. Still, it does bring me joy to have good skin, so I’m spicing it up by exploring new products and looking up new application methods.

I love learning new things, and this circuit breaker has given me the chance to pick up new skills! One of the things I’ve been working on is learning how to make selfie filters. It’s been frustrating and the learning curve is steep – it’s essentially 50% coding and numbers and math, and 50% digital art and design. But because the feeling of finally creating a successful project is so satisfying, the headache is completely worth it!

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