Synchroncity-led Interview

I met Priscilla through synchronicity.
I go for an art class (which is very unusual in the first place) in a lovely faraway place in Bukit Batok called heartspace.
And I sit down and the art therapist, Joanna Tan, introduces me to Priscilla.
I ask her what she does. And she says she’s a local designer.
I ask her the name of her label. (not that i know anything about labels but i had a strange inkling of what she might say.)
And she says, “Chalk”.
And my jaw literally drops.
I had just bought a dress from Chalk to wear for my debate on happiness on Channel News Asia.
What are the odds?
And later when I showed what I had drawn to the class, Priscilla said she had had a vision of what I had drawn before I drew it.
Anyway, we have met up a few times with Roland, her husband.


Priscilla and Roland have just started a blog and here’s an extract from it:
“Recently married and constantly searching for each other and for ourselves. Through all these moments, apart, or in each others’ embrace, we shape each other, and in so doing, shape ourselves. This process is sometimes easy, often painful, but never wasted. The easy part is falling in love. The pain comes from being in love, staying in love.

This shaping hurts, because it wills one against oneself for the sake of another. But yet it is not martyrdom, because the shaping occurs both ways. This will is called compassion.

Through the past year, we realize that this love and compassion cannot be limited to ourselves if we want it to be true. We are sentient beings living amongst other sentient beings. We can no longer ignore the sufferings caused by our wants and desires. And for this reason we have decided to abstain from animal produce as a first step to grow in our love for each other.”

Priscilla recently interviewed me for her blog and here’s the piece:


Thanks, Priscilla and Roland, for expanding your love to include animals!
And thanks to my friend, Usha Das, for choosing the dress for me and introducing me to Chalk. You never know where things may lead! :) Life is magical.

Letter: We should know when to hang up the mobile phone

Thanks to TODAY for publishing my letter today. :) Please help share and discuss in your own circles of friends and colleagues.

Watch this powerful video.

People can take a pledge here
and share campaign materials from here
and to get reminders, “like” the page of

Thank you for helping us improve our relationship with gadgets, which will help us improve our relationship with each other!

We should know when to hang up the mobile phone
by Vadivu Govind 04:45 AM Jan 07, 2013

I am grateful to Ms Lee Seow Ser for sharing, in “Spooked by the hook of the phone” (Dec 24), about her wake-up call on her dependence on her mobile phone.

I am happy that she has realised the importance of connecting with loved ones more than a phone, a message I support.

Some time ago, a car almost rammed into the taxi I was in; when I looked at the driver, he was looking at his phone. Drivers like him helped me to stop walking and looking at my phone last year.

I thought of the people they could hit, including my loved ones. I do not drive, but it jolted me to improve my relationship with my phone.

Recently, I saw someone watching pornography on his iPhone while in a public bus. I have seen people watching television or movies with the volume turned up loud in public transport.

I see people crossing the road, climbing the stairs, boarding buses, driving cars while looking at their phones or other gadgets. Some of us do not seem conscious of the terrain or people around us.

We bump into others or have narrow escapes on the road. We slow others down. We do not see when people need help.

In the case of the man watching porn, he did not seem to care about exposing others to images that may disturb them.

Some of us seem disconnected, existing in our own bubbles, unaware of the safety and well-being of ourselves and others.

Institutions have a role to play. Workplaces, schools, religious groups, the Government and private institutions could educate people on improving our relationship with technology. We need role models to come forth and speak up on this issue.

Even if institutions do not do this, let us do it ourselves. Let us wake up before life gives us painful wake-up calls. Let us experience the joy of being fully present wherever we are, feeling connected to people around us and staying alive and healthy.

Should Happiness Be The National Target?

In late October 2012, I took part in a live Channel News Asia Debate, arguing for the motion: Should Happiness Be The National Target?

You can watch it online.

You can screen clips of it at your workplace/school etc and have a discussion afterward.

You can help prioritise happiness and wellbeing of people wherever you are.

You can learn more about my work to improve happiness, especially in the workplace. Let me know at vadivu[at] if I can be of support.

You can stay in touch via my facebook page.