Education:Higher Ground Baptist Academy (high school in Philippines) in 1999 *** New Era University ( I did my undergraduate in the Philippines) in 2003 *** Polytechnic University of the Philippines (where I did my first master's degree) in 2013 *** University of Hertfordshire (where I did my second master's degree) in 2014
Qualifications:BSc Psychology (2003) *** Master in Psychology (2013) *** MSc Research Methods in Psychology (2014)
Work History:I worked as a cleaner at a factory when I was 16 *** I worked at a burger van to pay my tuition fees *** I worked at a call centre in the Philippines *** I taught English in Thailand and Vietnam *** I taught psychology at two universities in the Philippines *** I worked as a consultant in Singapore *** I taught at a college in Essex *** I worked as a social media manager in London *** I now manage a mental health blog and organise conferences
mental health blogger + psychology conference organiser
I’m the boss – I’ve been running my mental health blog since 2014. I used to manage my blog part-time until December 2018.
Favourite thing to do in my job: When I publish new blogposts (articles about mental health).
I'm a mental health blogger. ***Thank you to everyone who voted for me! I wish you all the best!***
My primary motivation for joining ‘I’m a Scientist’ is to inspire the next generation of scientists. So rather than telling you about the science that I do, I’ll tell you about my advocacy.
I grew up in a slum in Manila in the Philippines. We had no electricity or running water until I was 20. Indeed, we did not have a toilet until I was 12. I did not experience what it was like to sleep on a bed until I was 16. Here’s a picture of where I grew up.
Poverty damages someone’s life chances. If you grew up here in the UK (which is one of the world’s richest countries), you have greater chances of becoming a scientist. Take advantage of that privilege, so you can be the next scientist that can help improve people’s lives. The world desperately needs these kinds of scientists.
It doesn’t really matter what kind of science you do – what’s more important is how you improve people’s lives, especially for those who were not as lucky as you. 🙂
I have witnessed first-hand how discussions about mental health are considered a luxury. You don’t talk about mental health in the slums. Instead, you talk about where you are going to get food for your next meal.
Poverty taught me the greatest psychological concept: resilience 💪💪💪. It is also my childhood experience that led me to launch my own mental health blog in order to address the stigma around mental health – My grandmother suffered from dementia before she died, and my friend had schizophrenia. Another friend died of suicide.
In 2013, I came here in the UK to do my second master’s degree in psychology. Since then, I have been travelling to different countries to talk about the importance of mental health – I have been to 28 different countries so far.
I now live in Rainham in Essex. I’m gay and I’ve been married for four years. I’m 36 and I plan to carry on my mission of spreading awareness about psychology and mental health for a very long time. In my spare time, I go sailing.
If my blog becomes a useful platform for people who are struggling with mental health, then I know I have built a simple legacy. I will die a satisfied scientist.
Believe in yourself. Have faith in your abilities. You can be the next scientist!
You can be a #futurescientistblogger ! 👊
mental health blogger + psychology conference organiser
I mainly work from home where I manage a blog (It’s called Psychreg – google it). I earn money from sponsored contents. Here’s a screenshot of my blog, which I designed myself:
I also organise conferences relating to mental health. Last year, I organised a highly successful conference in the Philippines which was attended by 549 people. Here’s the picture. The man kneeling down is Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes, the past president of the British Psychological Society. Can you find where I am?
This year, I am organising three conferences. So I am going to the Philippines, Malaysia and Romania.
I wear many hats: I’m also a social media influencer, I endorse books and psychology events on Twitter and for some of these I get paid. How cool is that! On Sundays, I work for a radio station in London – many of their programmes are about mental health.
I also write a weekly column for a newspaper in Malaysia, and for a magazine in Malta. My articles are about psychology, mental health and well-being. I was invited to write those columns because of my blog.
I also get interviewed on radio, newspaper and TV stations. Here’s a picture of me when I was interviewed at a radio station in London last March 2019, about my blog.
Being a mental health blogger has opened a wonderful world of opportunities to me.
My Typical Day
I publish around 3–5 blogposts in a day. I go for a run every afternoon. On Sundays, I work for a radio station in London – their programmes are about mental health. If the weather is good, I do boot sale.
Here’s a picture of our dining room. That’s my place of work and I think it is cool to work from home. I get up anytime I want and I don’t have to travel to go to work. And of course, I can work as much, or as little, as I want.
I usually get up around 8am and then do my workout for 15 minutes. I take an hour break in the afternoon to do an hour of running.
By 6pm, I listen to the radio for news. My husband gets home from work around 8pm. That’s our quality time.
What I'd do with the prize money
I will create a YouTube video to inspire future mental health bloggers.
I started my own YouTube channel. Right now, there are three videos on it. This one is my favourite.
If I win ‘I’m a Scientist’, I will spend the prize money on a really cool animated video to inspire schoolchildren to become mental health bloggers. A portion of it will also be spent on the conferences I organise. Some will go to the ‘Mind’ mental health charity.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
spirited, hardworking, introvert
What or who inspired you to follow your career?
I read a lot of blogs and I attend lots of conference, and then I told myself: 'I want to do these things.' There are also underlying personal reasons as mentioned above.
What was your favourite subject at school?
What did you want to be after you left school?
I wanted to be a teacher.
Were you ever in trouble at school?
No. But I use to copy maths homework from my classmates – I'm terrible with maths.
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
Hmmm. Probably manage my own antique shop.
Who is your favourite singer or band?
I'm old school. Singer: Elton John | Band: ABBA
What's your favourite food?
Thai food. I love pad thai. 😋
What is the most fun thing you've done?
I've ziplined over the sea in the Philippines. I've also eaten a live worm (It's sounds yucky but it's a delicacy).
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
Look 25 until I'm 85 * Win the lottery tonight * Have 1 million hits on my website in a day
Tell us a joke.
What do you call a fish without an eye. 'Fsh'