Chew On It: Developing Resilience

I have had amazing highs in life. But also some great adversities, such as three bouts of depression, bankruptcy from restaurant business failure in early 2000, and the loss of my brother and my daughter.

Good and bad things will happen. We take good things for granted but we tend to dwell on the bad. Instead, we should look for acceptance and then find ways to resolve things or live with them. It is difficult to do, but essential to thrive.

The bankruptcy in 2000 was very distressing. I encouraged myself to stop indulging in self pity and then endeavoured to set up a new business — Elixr at Park Street in 2002. I took the effort in seeking support and investments from friends. Fortunately, I had people who believed in me in pioneering a mind body health club.

I was thrilled to be back in an industry that I loved. I focused on gathering amazing people to pursue excellence together. Chasing money was never my motivator. I believed that by working on delivering the very best in service and product, success would ensue. I have also learnt not to be involved in a business that I have no passion for: restaurants. My love for food stops at the table.

To prevent my mind from heading down a dark path, I constantly remind myself that I only have this one life (not applicable to my Buddhist friends). The best option is to make the most out of it. There is an abundance of joy and pleasure this world. I proactively seek these things.

Mental health requires the right assistance from professionals. It also depends on realising help is needed and finding the right therapist. I tried sessions with numerous psychologists and psychiatrists to no success. Until I discovered Journey Therapy.

Should you or anyone feel that I can assist with the direction of getting professional help, please contact me via our reception.

When needed, don’t be afraid to reach out to family and friends who are empathetic with their support. There is no need to be embarrassed in showing your emotional pain, as it is so natural.

Some lessons I have learnt about grief:

You may be in pain, but you don’t have to keep hurting yourself.

Adversity and tragedy are realities of life. It is not a matter of if you will experience it, but rather when. Hence it is prudent when it happens not to think “why me?” but instead work on accepting the situation and finding ways to live with it.

Life continues to be fascinating and joyful in many ways, but only you can make that happen.