LET IT GO: How local celebs de-stress and relax

A list of simple and fuss-free ways to unwind, all tried-and-tested.

LET IT GO: How local celebs de-stress and relax
LET IT GO: How local celebs de-stress and relax
15 Jan 2018

LET IT GO: How local celebs de-stress and relax

Have you been binge-watching episodes of new Channel 8 drama Mind Matters (Ed’s note: All episodes of the drama are available for free on Toggle till Jan 24.) like us? The drama casts the spotlight on mental illnesses, giving us a look into the life of a psychiatrist who temporarily loses his sanity, played by Qi Yuwu.

Now, if you’re feeling a little antsy after watching one too many episodes in one go (no judgement, we’ve all been there and done that), or if you’ve been feeling too overwhelmed by life, take a deep breath, settle down, and click on for some stress-relieving tips from the Mind Matters cast and their fellow actors and actresses.

Zhang Zhen Huan
Zhang Zhen Huan
15 Jan 2018

Zhang Zhen Huan

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
When I just entered the industry, I felt as if there were so many things that I didn't understand, and couldn't do well. Every day, when I was on set, I'd feel stressed. There'll always be a new problem cropping up every day, for example, if I encounter a certain problem during filming today, I'd go home and think about how to solve it. The next day, however, a new problem will pop up. This situation persisted for around two years, I think.

At that time, I talked to my parents on the phone more often, and indulged in sweet treats too. The next method for me would be to sleep. The one thing good about me is that even if I'm physically hurt and in pain, or just plain unhappy, I'd still be able to fall asleep. After a good night's sleep, I'll feel much better.

I'd try my best to remain positive and bright as well. [After all], there's no avoiding stress or unhappiness at work.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
Last year, when I filmed Legal Eagles in Malaysia. At that time, my stomach wasn't doing too well, and I was under quite a bit of stress. It was so bad that one day I couldn't remember my lines, and I couldn't even speak. I don't know why it happened, I might have been too conscious about my stomach issues. That was a pretty painful period for me, I didn't know why my stomach was having issues, and why it restricted me from saying my lines. I just felt very ill at ease. I didn't get much sleep then too, as my friends kept coming to visit, so they'll ask me out for a meal and to catch up.

Dennis Chew
Dennis Chew
15 Jan 2018

Dennis Chew

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
I will take a cold shower, and let the cold water pour down on me. I do that when I'm feeling frustrated. When the cold water pours down on you, you’ll feel so much better.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
I don’t actually experience a lot of stressful situations. If you ask me, waking up early every day is stressful for me, because I co-host a morning radio show [with Mark Lee, Marcus Chin and Chen Biyu], so I have to be in the studio by 6.30am. I usually have to wake up around 5am. Last year was very bad for me, I forgot to turn on my alarm twice, and woke up around 6am.  Once, I even woke up at 6.30am. I have to be in by 7am latest, and I live pretty far from the office. Luckily, it was the school holidays, so there wasn’t a lot of traffic. Still clad in my sleeping clothes, I quickly threw on a pair of bermudas, my jacket and a cap, and rushed over. I was right on time. As I slid into my seat , the last song from the previous set had just ended, and I was on-air almost immediately.

Chew Chor Meng
Chew Chor Meng
15 Jan 2018

Chew Chor Meng

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
I’m a Christian, so I’ll seek comfort through prayer.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
Every day is stressful for me. As you all know, my body’s condition isn’t good, so most of my stress revolves around my own body condition, like how I’m unable to do a simple thing that I was previously able to do. I’ll keep thinking about that one thing, particularly if it happens when I’m filming. For example, the director might mention that it’ll be better if I do a certain action. However, I am unable to do it. So, I’ll feel a frustrated, and reproachful. But, ultimately, the most important thing is your mindset. And as long as I’m able to work, and do what I love the most, which is performing, I should not have any regrets.

Kate Pang
Kate Pang
15 Jan 2018

Kate Pang

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
I’ll hug my kids and talk to them. I treat them like adults, when I talk to them. Say if I'm not feeling well, or there are family problems, I’ll talk to (my older child) Aden, and say, ‘Mama’s not feeling too well, my stomach hurts’. When my granny passed away recently, I explained to him what it meant as well.

He wouldn’t reply me verbally, but he’ll listen seriously. Sometimes, he’ll run away in the middle of the conversation, but I think that’s fine too. When I talk  to him about the same topic, I feel that he understands what I’m talking about. For example when I read to him a book in which the character dies, he’ll say, ‘Ah, I don’t want to hear this story, I don’t want the pig to die,’ because he kind of knows what dying means. So I think he’s actually a kid that really can understand the feelings of adults.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
If I finish filming for the day, and I feel that I didn't do too well, I’ll feel frustrated, and go to my husband [actor Andie Chen], to ask him for some professional advice because he’s better at acting.

Ya Hui
Ya Hui
15 Jan 2018

Ya Hui

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
I’ll go to sleep, when you’re asleep, you’ll get out of the real world, to another place, so I think it’s a very good way to relax.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
When I first started filming Babies on Board. Before Babies on Board, I’ve been mostly filming long-form dramas. It’s been a while since I’ve done a 9pm drama, so it’s really a very different experience. When we first started filming, I was pretty stressed, and I suffered from insomnia for the first two weeks! I couldn’t go to sleep, and just kept thinking about how to portray my character

Shane Pow
Shane Pow
15 Jan 2018

Shane Pow

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
When I’m feeling down, I’ll exercise. It’s a very good way to de-stress. Muay Thai is especially good for this; you can channel all your discontent and discomfort onto the sandbag. Your limbs will feel weak after that, but after sweating everything out and going for a shower, you’ll feel much better.

The worst thing to do is to bottle everything up. You have to let it out. At the moment, the most useful stress-reliever for me is exercise, and to talk to someone. For me, it’s my girlfriend [987 DJ Kimberly Wang].

Sometimes you don’t even need them to give you an answer, you just need someone to listen to you. So after letting it all out, you’ll realise that [the situation might not be as bad as it seems]. If you feel sad, don’t bottle it up, go exercise or talk to your friends.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
This year has been pretty ok for me, nothing particularly big happened. [The last time I felt stressed] would’ve been during work, when I feel that I didn’t perform as well as I could have.

At that time, I’d go for a run at night and return to look at my script, and get ready to start again the next day. Looking back now, the fact that I cannot recall anything [that has made me feel down] is a very good thing,. It was not all smooth sailing for me, of course, but there was not anything that impacted to the extent that I cannot let go of it.

Sheila Sim
Sheila Sim
15 Jan 2018

Sheila Sim

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
I don’t have the chance to do so recently, but when I was living in Hong Kong, I would download songs on the computer and blast them loudly, cupping the speakers to my ears and singing along as loudly as possible. It’s a very effective stress reliever for me. It’s very dramatic, because I’ll sing while crying at the same time. I stopped doing that after I left Hong Kong, because I don't have a computer. It’s a very good method to de-stress, because, you hear nothing but yourself.

When I’m feeling sad, I’ll play music, but when I’m feeling stressed, I’ll usually take a nap or go to sleep. I think that’s the best way to relieve stress.

Hong Ling
Hong Ling
15 Jan 2018

Hong Ling

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down? 
The first thing I’d do is to hide in my room. I’ll use my phone, turn off the lights and lie on the bed. I wouldn’t want to talk to anyone. I will wait until I cannot hold it in anymore, then I will call my friends for a chat, and let everything out. As long as I don’t have any work lined up, I’ll stay in my room. Sometimes when I feel down, I will go to [He] Ying Ying for a chat.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
I usually feel stressed because of work. I realised that I cannot handle stress. Every time I get more work, or take on a new drama, I will feel stressed, and as a result, I wouldn’t be able to get a good night’s sleep.

Qi Yuwu
Qi Yuwu
15 Jan 2018

Qi Yuwu

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
When I encounter these situations, my method is to listen to music that is more soothing in nature. I’ve tried listening to heavier music that allows me release my anger, but it just made me more frustrated in the end. So now, I listen to music that is more soothing, to calm myself down.  I feel like once you’re calmer, you’ll become more clearheaded. Then, you can start to question and communicate with yourself, to go through the situation at hand.

Are you the type to bottle up your feelings, or will you look for someone to confide in?
Sometimes I cannot even explain why I feel a certain way, so it’s hard for me to explain my problems to other people. As a result, I feel like it’s better for me to calm down, wait for my emotions to settle, and become more clear-headed, before I slowly go through what happened and find a solution.

Pan Ling Ling
Pan Ling Ling
15 Jan 2018

Pan Ling Ling

How do you de-stress when you’re feeling down?
I’ll sleep in an airconditioned room, because you can empty your mind and relax only during sleep.

When was the last time you felt down or stressed?
My recent trip to Korea. It was really painful to see my husband hurt. He kept wanting to help us whenever he saw us struggling with something, but we kept telling him not to do so, because if he falls and gets injured again it'll be worse for him. So that was really a very stressful and trying period.

All 20 episodes of Mind Matters will be available to view for free on Toggle from January 1 to 24, 2018. The drama will debut on February 8 2018 at 9pm on Channel 8.

Related:
I still don't see my kids often in Singapore: Qi Yuwu

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