Episode 219 – Embracing the Chaos with Kristal Naividi
In this week’s episode of the ‘Happy Lawyer Happy Life Podcast,’ I had the pleasure of interviewing solicitor Kristal Naividi.
Kristal is someone who I hadn’t had the opportunity to properly chat to prior to recording together, and really embodies what is so special about this podcast. Kristal’s sense of humour, kindness, resilience and ability to focus on the bigger picture are things that have really stood out for me – as well as her spectacular ability to embrace the chaos life brings!
Kristal has not followed a conventional path to law. In fact, her first experiences with the legal system came as a part of growing up in public housing across the road from the Long Bay Jail in Eastern Sydney! While her journey into law was non-linear, Kristal now runs her own firm – Coastal Lawyers – and is doing her Masters. In fact, Kristal was drawn to criminal law and family law as her lived experience growing up has given her a lot of insight into how people end up where they are. As a result, she can provide an unusual level of empathy and perspective for her clients.
Beginning as a legal secretary after seeing studying law at university as unattainable, Kristal has since become a qualified lawyer, worked for 12 years with the DPP (Director of Public Prosecutions) in difficult, varied cases across NSW. However, in 2020, she started finding the build-up of vicarious trauma harder to leave at work – so Kristal decided she wanted to start something new. Kristal started her law firm ‘Coastal Lawyers’ last year, 6 weeks before the Covid-19 lockdown hit – with three boys under 6 at home! Despite this, Kristal has continued to grow her business, run around with her boys, and work in a space that lets her passion for hearing the stories of others really shine.
Kristal’s superpower is her ability to view speed-bumps in life as learning experiences, and to see the bright side of life in even the most difficult cases. Her story is a great reminder to be kind, to listen, to ride the wave, and to remember that even in the toughest days in #lawland, the sun will rise the next day.
In this interview, Kristal and I also chatted about-
- Kristal’s lockdown tips – lower your expectations, prioritize, and keep your routine!
- Kindness is not weakness.
- What would Kristal be in an alternate life? A singer or a psychologist!
- Growing up and living on the Central Coast, how her upbringing shaped her career.
- Her non-linear path into law.
- Benefits and difficulties in working for the DDP.
- Her start-up business journey through Covid.
- A day in the life; Kristal’s tips for lawyering as a mum.
- Clients, and knowing when to say no!
- The importance of teams and communities.
- Non-lawyer life – the chaos of a house of boys, and how this helped her law firm!
- Stressors in life and law, and how she manages these.
- Mental health issues and the law, and the impact this has.
- Her influences in law, and where she’d like to be in 10 years.
- The benefits of having her own firm – flexibility, and what works best for her priorities.
- Kristal’s thoughts on family law, and the differences between family and criminal law.
- Her ‘magic wand’ wishes, and her favourite guilty pleasure TV show.
- Kristal’s happiness tip!
Sit back and enjoy this interview with Kristal Naividi.