Valerie might look demure and dainty in this airy black number, but don’t be fooled — this avid muay thai fan turns to the sport to keep her sane when work gets too tough to handle. “There are some nights when I actually return to my office after muay thai to finish up my work for the night,” she says. “But a good workout always leaves me feeling refreshed and happy, so I’d feel ready to take on any work that I have to complete.” Valerie dresses for comfort when she goes to work, and advises others to do the same. “After all, starting the day feeling comfy and happy in what you’re wearing really sets the tone for a productive day ahead — one that doesn’t involve you worrying about your post-lunch ‘food baby’!” She also counts on yoga to help her relax, and also stresses the importance of having good friends at work to get her through anything — including the time she misses with her family. “It’s difficult to juggle work life and personal life, especially at the start when you’re trying to adapt,” she says. “My family has dinner at 6:30pm — which is the time I end work — so I can’t have dinner with them on weekdays. That’s why I usually set aside some time over the weekend to catch up and have meals with them, or message them in my family’s Whatsapp group chat if there’s anything I need to talk about! I think it helps to remember that quality beats quantity, and to make the most of whatever time you have with your loved ones.” Beyond muay thai and yoga, Valerie also has a passion for acting, and says she would be doing it full time if she could. “It’s something I’ve always enjoyed because I like the idea of being someone completely different and getting away with it.” Her avid imagination serves her well even when she’s not acting. “Crime novels excite me. I always visualise what I’m reading so it feels like I’m watching a movie every time I read a story! Reading also helps make my bus and train journeys to and from work (or any destination) much better.” Perhaps we should try that out for ourselves too.