Meet Lidia Samoilov
Lidia is nothing if not determined. “Whatever I do, I try to do it with passion and 100% commitment,” she says. “It doesn’t matter whether it’s a personal interest or not.” Take ice skating for instance. Lidia says she lacks balance, but after seven years of dedication, she’s become a pretty proficient ice skater. “Now, maybe I’ll sign up for women’s hockey,” she muses. “It would be exciting, and I’d add even more new skills too.”
Patience and Thinking
Lidia describes herself as an emotional person, but she practices meditation to help her be more calm and thoughtful. “I started with meditation classes a couple of years ago and found that it changed my life.” She feels that she is gradually learning to speak less, listen more and think more. “Much of our experience is just how we see the world, and a lot of that is up to us to decide.” Lidia’s reading interests sometimes follow the same theme—Thinking, Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman, looks at the different systems (intuitive versus logical) that drive the way we think and make choices.
You might not think fishing and meditation have anything in common, but Lidia is also an avid angler and often finds tranquility when she’s on the open waters of Nipissing Lake—her family’s annual vacation spot. “I love fishing…I just like the whole process—it’s very meditative and you never know what you’re going to catch!”
Walking the walk – literally
Some of us use wearables to count our steps, in an effort to stay fit. Lidia’s walks could actually wear out a wearable, if she used one. “When the weather is OK, I will sometimes walk home from work with a friend,” a five-hour, 20-kilometre hike from downtown Toronto to North York. “For variety, we take different routes through the neighbourhoods. We’ll even do it in winter if it’s not too icy.”
Her love of hiking has led her and her husband to venture out to nature trails as well. And their escapes are a bit easier now that their three children have left the roost for university. “Every weekend, we try to go somewhere new to explore,” she says. Crawford Lake, near Milton, was a highlight, with its “thick forests, beautiful climbs and amazing views—it’s so different from Toronto.” Nature treks have even influenced Lidia’s holiday aspirations. “I’d really like to try some more active vacations, where I can hike and see more of Canada,” she thinks. Nova Scotia may be on the destination list.
During personal tax season, Lidia volunteers at a tax clinic to help with their tax returns. Beneficiaries of her tax advice are often seniors who need an assist with tax software or people who don’t speak English. Occasionally, there’s a bit of social work involved too. “Some of my clients are isolated or lonely and they’ll tell me their life story just because they need someone to talk to.”
Lidia is one of Farber’s longer-standing employees, having been with the firm for 12 years. “A number of things have changed,” she observes. “It’s hard for a firm to keep the intimacy when you grow, but I love many of the changes—the professionalism keeps increasing and we’ve added many new and diverse practices. But there’s still a real culture of cooperation among our people and it carries over to the way we treat our clients.”
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