how do we just stop?


I get it. Many of us want to stop and feel like we cannot. We do not have the luxury to be depressed.

9 years ago, I could. I had no kids and therefore no financial obligation or school fees to pay. I had a company to support me through part of that experience. I had a boyfriend who took care of me. Many of us do not.

9 years later today, the irony of me feeling that I do not have the capacity or time to be depressed is not lost on me. For even though I am spiraling and dizzy from spinning with the world, falling into bits sprawled out in a dark desert like melting clocks, I hold on, stay intact, keep it together and even try to smile, because the wheels keep churning… 

Because, I need to keep pitching for business, keep replying to clients’ emails, keep working on my presentations, keep paying the second instalment of kindergarten fees, keep paying my helper, keep paying electricity bills….

Because, I have become a hamster on a wheel again, though at least this time I quite like the cage I built for myself. 

How do we just, stop?

Right now, to be honest, I do not know.

If I had lots of money, I would also like to prance around the world like the Royals for a “cause” (I bet Prince Harry is honoured to appear in the same newsletter as me), speed up the marketing for Bearapy, and hire someone to help. But I do not. In fact, I think I will go bankrupt in four months if nothing miraculous happens. So, how can I stop? 

When I do a PLAYshop or workshop or whatever you want to call what I do with companies, executives ask me that too. How can we stop, re-set, take a pause and a break, and look after ourselves (but the baby is screaming and grandparents nagging and husband/wife not around and bills are pouring in…)? Sometimes, I am at a loss too on how to answer this question. Especially because, right now, all I want to do is to hide in my Bear Cave and pretend I do not have any responsibilities.

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I do not have any advice or suggestions for any of you in the same predicament in this post. All I wanted to say  was:

I get it. No advice, no suggestions, no consolation. Just, I get it. 

If you feel like you cannot stop, I get it.

If you feel like you have nowhere to turn and no alternatives to what you are already doing, I get it.

If all you wanted was to vent on Facebook, take a piss at yourself, and enjoy your own sarcastic humour but get responses from people who think they know it all and “comfort” you and tell you not to feel that way which annoys the hell out of you, I get it. 

If you want to take care of yourself, exercise, eat right, sleep more, but just get snowed under by a sense of responsibility, I get it. 

If you do do some exercise and have to tolerate hip pain or worse other issues as you try to jump or run just because you’ve had a bloody baby push through you and get distressed from exercising, I get it.

If you want to scream inside but put up a smile, I get it. 

If you feel like your shoulders is about to fall off because the weight is too much to carry, I get it. 

If you just wanted to do what you enjoy but put it off to do a work proposal, I get it. 

If you hide under your desk with covers on you to cry because you don’t want anyone else to hear you, I get it. 

If you feel like you have no way out and in extreme despair, I get it.

If you are disintegrating, I get it. 

I get it. I do. I really do. 

Bear hugs… 

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about Noch Noch

Enoch Li, (pen name: Noch Noch) was 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 Social Entrepreneur and founded BEARAPY to help corporates make workplaces mentally healthy, and support executives to become more resilient.