MEET LEAH

UP CLOSE
AND PERSONAL

Leah is one half of the world famous travelling duo that form ‘Free and Addicted’.   Together with her partner Brynn they started journaling, snapping, gramming and blogging their travel stories a few years ago and haven’t looked back since.   

Super talented in the design department, Leah freelances under Leah Sylvia Creative either from NZ while they save for the next big OE, or remotely from whatever city they happen to be at next. It’s the perfect solution for a surf loving duo, ensuring they can always hit the beach while the surf is pumping.

Leah’s love for life, adventure, fun, nature and travel is utterly infectious and encapsulates what it truly means to be a LABONICS muse.  She’s smart, sassy and a true natural beauty and we simply adore her. Recently we took the time to get up close and personal with Leah to share some insights into what makes her tick.

KEEN TO SEE WHAT LEAH'S BEEN UP TO LATELY? CHECK OUT HER WEBSITE OR FOLLOW ALONG HERE

What’s your favorite way to spend a weekend?

Fav way to start Saturday morning is a walk to get breaky & a coffee with my man. If we’re lucky and the surf is on, we’ll head up north for surf mish. Getting outside is important because I”m a freelancer, so working from home Mon – Fri definitely means I’m fizzing to get out of the house come weekend. Socialising Saturday night with a wine or 5 is always a guilty pleasure too.

What was the best vacation you ever took and why?

Well I’ve just spent the last two and a half years travelling through Europe and Bali and it was absolutely life-changing. Why? Because travelling has made me a better human. It’s opened my mind, allowed me to drop my anxiety around what others think of me and focus on being happy. I let my walls down, I encouraged myself to take new steps, learn new things, try new foods, meet new people. It’s surprising how much you can really let go of things you once thought were so important (like new clothes, or my hair straightener). Life became incredibly care-free, I had a huge sense of freedom and could just follow the path that would lead to the most joy. Everyday was an adventure and although so many days are not as amazing as what it might appear on our insta (like the 13 hour bus rides or when you get gastro in Romania and are holed up in your room for 5 days). But even then, you still learn something in everyday and in every experience. Amazingly, I was able to draw on these experiences creatively and start my business Leah Sylvia Creative.

Was the last thing you read digitally or in print?

I’m currently reading “The Choice” by Edith Eger and already I can tell it’s going to be one of the best books I’ve ever read. HIGHLY recommend.

What was the last show you binge-watched?

Shameless. My man and I are currently binging our way through all 10 seasons.

If you are into podcasts, do you have any immediate recommendations and why?

I love Your Creative Start by Joharn Quinn, a podcast that interviews creatives and talks about topics that are so relevant and inspiring. I’ve found many girl boss crushes through her podcast.

How do you deal with work (or home) stress?

Honestly, I just try not to be too hard on myself. We’re all human, sometimes life throws us curve balls out of our control and I find the best ways to handle stressful situations like creative block, painful clients or missed deadlines is to just stop, take myself out of the situation and get outside or into a yoga class. Just to have a breather and reset my mindset. Being mindful of how I’m feeling and communicating that to friends and family is important too.

What is your definition of success?

Happiness… Being happy is 100% the key to my success, my self love and creativity.

If you could do anything, besides what you're doing now, what would you do?

Hmmmmmm I think it would be to jump back on an aeroplane and travel again. Right now i’m back home in New Zealand, saving for the next big adventure next year – but if I could leave right now…I probably would.

What makes (inspires) you to get up in the morning?

My morning routine! Out of bed, wash face, coffee, write in my journal. Such simple pleasures that seriously gets me in the right headspace before walking into my office to start work. Journaling was my new years resolution and I’m stoked to say I’ve written everyday and now it’s such a good way to start my day that I look forward to it each morn!

What do you think can be the main hindrances to women succeeding in the workplace?

Hmmmmmmmm honestly I don’t think there are any. GO LADIES GO!!

What things do you do to look after your mental or physical well being (or both)?

I do a lot of yoga which has definitely transformed both my body and mind  I surf as much as I can which brings me SO much joy and I travel often. I know what activities, small or large, that make me happy and I embrace these things every daily. I read every night before I go to sleep and I write each morning. I communicate my feelings to loved ones and recognise and ask when in need of help and advice.

How do you find balance in work, family, rest, play?

Since becoming a freelancer & working from home, I quite easily find balance. I have my ‘me time” during the day by going to yoga or the gym, then work around this. This frees up my nights to spend with family, my partner or friends.

What advice would you give to either your younger or teen self?

Hmmmmmm, this is a hard one because everything I  experienced as the younger and teen version of Leah has led me to exactly where I am and where I want to be. I would probably say to myself:  Don’t stress the small stuff, laugh often, trust your instincts, follow your heart , don’t try so hard to make everyone like you and to don’t worry about things that are out of your control.

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