what’s behind your smile?

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Cliché as it might sound, this picture my friend drew speaks more than the million words I write. A generous gift he gave me, to support my work in BEARAPY, and to mark World Mental Health Day today.

Similar to many, I used to put up this “professional” mask – and got reprimanded for when I express any anger, sadness, frustration, confusion, or doubt (still get this actually). One must be seen to be successful, occasionally humble bragging with being too busy, thereby inferring one’s indispensability to the world. One must also be seen as having their shit together, on top of things, and still able to juggle crying babies, look impeccably manicured, plastered with a loving smile.

Such expectations burden us. Such perceived expectations overwhelm us. Such self-induced pressure can break us.

I broke. I defragmented. I regrouped.

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about Noch Noch

Enoch Li, (pen name: Noch Noch) is born and raised in Hong Kong and Australia. She has also studied / worked / lived in the US, France, UK, Japan, The Netherlands, China, and has travelled to more than 40 countries. She loves travelling and her curiosity in foreign cultures and languages has led her to enjoy her life as an international executive in the banking & finance industry. However, she was forced to take time off work in 2010 due to her illnesses and after spending time in recovery, cooking, practising Chinese calligraphy, reading and writing – in short, learning to take care of herself and letting out the residual work stress, she has transitioned into a Play Consultant for corporates interested in creative change management and employee well-being using the psychology of playfulness.