Modern Wonder Woman- Debbie Tan

Posted on 17 December 2016

Tell us a bit about yourself? How did you get to where you are today?

I’m Deb Tan, Bee Bee to my children – mum, wifie and part owner and commercial director of Aquabumps with my husband Uge. I’m a country girl from the North Coast and came to the big smoke after uni to follow my dreams of working in advertising of which I started in media about 19 years ago, followed by many years as a suit or Group Account Director in big ad agencies, then Sale Director of Harpers BAZAAR followed by RUSSH and now alongside my husband in our business Aquabumps where I look after all of our sponsors, collaborations, PR, Marketing, create content for our sponsors and anything and everything other than take the pictures.

What is one of the most important lessons you have learnt as an entrepreneur?

To trust your gut, work with people you like and to never compromise on the positioning of your brand – it’s everything.

What daily habits keep you productive? I have to exercise first thing once Uge gets home from his morning shooting ritual, it’s my moving meditation, my stress manager and my feel good fix for everything that’s happening in life. I love soft sand running, power yoga and am making my surfing come back now my boys are bigger. That and cups of tea.

Why is health and fitness a priority for you? 

I’ve always been in love with moving my body, sweating – the adrenaline high. I was mad about sport at school and now it’s just something in my life I can’t be without. Now I have a growing family, it’s my time for just me. It’s just Bee Bee and the sea or my yoga mat and no one else, I solve work problems, anything that might be bothering me. It makes me a better wife, mum and productive business woman.

How do you prioritize your workload each day/week? 

I plan my day usually on the soft sand or during downward dog (I know, I know - I’m working on being more present as this is what yoga is all about). I write a list as soon as I arrive at the office, or at night my notepad is by my bed, cross them off and have the ability to be very efficient when I’m at the office, it comes with being a mum. I have 2 days with my boys 3 days in the office and I do my best not to look at emails and take calls on the days I am with them – the work will always be there but the moments with them won’t and are way more special to me.

What do you do to concentrate? 

Exercise gives you an amazing ability to concentrate, be focused and keep sharp. I don’t drink coffee, but love cups of tea and know I have x amount of hours to get it all done before I pick up my boys – it creates amazing efficiency.

Do you have a morning routine or ritual? I wake when the boys wake me (EARLY) – we get dressed I make them breakfast and myself a green juice with vit c. I get them ready for daycare and as soon as Uge is home it’s me and my bike and I head for the beach or to yoga.

What do you do to unwind? 

A glass of wine with Uge when he gets home from work and we catch up on our days and yoga is the best thing to slow my mind. Swims in the sea with my boys and reading a magazine – while we live in a world on digital temptation nothing beats reading and turning the pages of a magazine. I’m a country girl – so I have to get out of Bondi once a month to fill my cup with fresh air, deserted beaches and quite.

What are your thoughts on mistakes, challenges or failures?

Mistakes are the best thing in life, as hard as they are to make – it’s how you learn and grow. Challenges too – if somethings hard it means the rewards will be greater and to fail means your human and you will learn from it, pick yourself up and get on with it. Life wouldn’t be as beautiful without all these things.

What was your biggest achievement/ something you’re the most proud of? 

Nothing beats giving birth as a woman – I feel so bad that Uge doesn’t get to do that – even though he watched both of our children being born and being a mother is the greatest gift in life. It’s full of mistakes, challenges and failures – but watching them grow and having that kind of love and want is the absolute best thing in life. I am pretty proud that Uge and I can work together and have grown Aquabumps together over the past 10 years and I still love him like the first day I laid eyes on him in his just opened North Bondi Gallery and brought an artwork.

What was your biggest setback? And was there a life lesson that came out of it? 

Losing my grandmother who was such an important part of my life and who I am. It taught me to live every moment, to never compromise my own happiness and to stop and smell the roses. I see her in every rose I smell!

Finally, At Vie Active we celebrate the notion of being FLAWSOME, realizing that we can’t always be perfect and that our imperfectness is what makes us who we are – what makes you FLAWSOME? 

Gosh I am very far from perfect, but I’m aware of it and try to be present – listen to when my husband gives me feedback or my children for that matter. Being aware makes you conscious and humble and a little bit better and being you, everyday.



Where can we find you?

  • Website
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram @aquabumps @aquabumpsgallery @beebeedebee

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