Wonderful Women Interview with Multi-Platform Journalist Sophie Mei Lan

Sophie Mei Lan

Sophie Mei Lan is a multi-award winning journalist, dancer and mum-of-two. She enjoys filmmaking, presenting, learning languages and blogging on current affairs issues. 

Sophie’s latest film #SaveMyBaby documenting when her daughter was seriously unwell, is out now on BBC Raw. In her spare time Sophie’s a keen bellydancer, footballer and buggy runner. 

Describe a typical day for you?

My two girls normally crawl onto me, waking me up to feed them. Whilst I’m feeding them I try catch up on emails.

Once I’ve got my girls and myself ready, I try to exercise most mornings whether it be dancing with my little ones or doing fitness DVDs at home or if I’m lucky I’ll get to a Zumba class or go for a run with my baby in the buggy. 

My days depend on what my two girls are doing. But often we have personal and professional meetings or play dates. And I always find time for a bit of shopping. 

On an afternoon I try to get the housework done and if I’m lucky I’ll manage to do a bit of work on my laptop. 

Then after bath and bed time I’ll either do yoga or plan some dance classes and/or short films.

I try to read magazines or newspapers but often I’ve got too much to do on my iPhone before I fall asleep. 

What do you feel are your biggest achievements? 

Bellydancing my way to the semi- finals of ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent when I was a teenager has definitely been a highlight in my life. 

Then a few years later, I won an Amnesty International human rights media award for my blog and an NCTJ Scoop of the Year award thanks to the Journalism Diversity Fund which allowed me to study journalism. 

And more recently my dream of being a BBC Journalist came true. 

But my biggest achievement of all is having two babies.

What’s in your handbag/satchel etc?

Nappies, snacks, wipes, iPhone & fillup phone charger and my camera (always ready to make a film!) 

Plus I’m old school and still carry around my Filofax and notepad & pen. 

Oh and random pieces of makeup but always eye liner. 

What are your ambitions in life?

As a child I dreamt of becoming a professional actress and dancer which I started to fulfil whilst at university. 

Then I decided that I wanted to be  a journalist, which I still am today, but I would also like to do more presenting and broadcasting.

But my biggest ambition is being the main carer for my kids whilst doing bits of blogging, film-making, travelling and bellydancing!

What advice would you give your pre-baby self that you now know having had a child? 

You can’t have it all. The best thing you can strive for is to be content. 

Family and friends first and career should slot into that. 

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?

Hopefully I will be a successful  broadcast journalist and blogger as well as still being the main carer for my kids. 

I’d love to continue my dancing too. 

What advice would you give a budding journalist?

Carve a niche for yourself and get as much experience as possible. 

Try to keep a work-life balance as having a life will help you come up with ideas and maintain focus as you’ll be enjoying what you do.

Finally, happiness is…

Laughing, dancing, loving, playing sports, eating Sunday dinners with family and being in the moment.

For more information on Sophie Mei Lan, visit her website, facebook page her site on journalism and Twitter profile.

Her parenting blog is Mama Mei.

Watch Sophie’s moving film here:

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