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Member Spotlight: Daniel Lim

Member Spotlight: Daniel Lim

Jun 15, 2021

Daniel Lim is a life and business coach, and co-founder and podcaster at LITO, but that is just skimming the surface. By his 30s, his portfolio also included other businesses focused around brand identity, branding, UX and UI design, interactive design, and web and app development—all of which are thriving till today.

A serial entrepreneur of a different cadre— “I consider myself a ‘cereal’ entrepreneur,” he jokes, “I do things for the love of it. And usually just to scratch an itch.” That passion has translated into success in all his endeavours, having gained his business acumen from his father.

When in conversation with Lim, it becomes very apparent that he is a storyteller, and that he has a lot to share. That he is a podcaster doesn’t come as a surprise; but that he is a life coach, perhaps, does.

the wake up call

This new direction in Lim’s life was triggered when he was at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, about 17 years ago. It was neither art nor the buzz of the city that moved him, rather he went through a meltdown on the hallowed grounds of the museum. It was a state of complete mind and body dissociation that was so severe that Lim had to be airlifted to Singapore.

Up until that time, Lim knew that he was a workaholic, an adrenaline junkie who revelled in the thrill of success. But he also had a very destructive relationship with money, which he realised was deepseated trauma from his father having abandoned him and his family when he was barely 10 years old. Life until then had been in the lap of luxury as his father’s family came from money.

“We went from super rich to pauper overnight,” he says, although eternally grateful for the fond memories of growing up with his maternal family, especially his grandmother, who took them in after his father left the family.

But the transience of money affected him in his 20s and 30s in more ways than he realised. “My narrative around money wasn’t a very healthy one, it was more like, ‘I don’t really like money’ and ‘I can make all this money, but I don’t want to hang on to it’.” What resulted was an over-indulgent, extravagant and wasteful lifestyle, hinged on the mindset that more was never enough.

His meltdown and the therapy sessions that followed proved to be the lifeline he needed. At the encouragement of his therapist Koriynne Wong—“my guardian angel”—he made up his mind to give back to the community by helping others find themselves, the way he had been helped.

“I enjoy unscalable conversations and developing deep connections.”

a new direction

Today Lim’s entire focus is on his coaching business and podcasts with his other pet project, LITO (litolabs.com), which he runs with his friend and photographer Rebecca Toh —the name is in fact a combination of both their last names.

“It was challenging at the beginning, when I started out, not many people knew what life coaching was,” says Lim, but that has changed today with more and more young people wanting to dig deeper into their psyches and find meaning in life—so much so that his youngest client is a 12-year-old boy. But age is just a number, “when I look at a person, I look at their spirit”, he says. Lim gains inspiration from the things around him, and that includes carrying back life lessons from his own coaching sessions.

“I enjoy unscalable conversations and developing deep connections,” adds Lim, and he could very well be explaining the concept behind LITO (which is also the Japanese pronunciation for “light”). The podcasts touch on topics related to business, life and happiness and explore how one could lead a meaningful and fulfilled life—“to living a life with intention, and not by default,” says Lim.

When Rebecca and Lim started out, they pushed out 52 episodes in the first year—they were churning one episode every single week. The meaning of what they do really hit home during COVID-19, as they saw more and more people plagued by uncertainties of a post-pandemic world tuning in to hear a voice of upliftment and empowerment. This spurred the need to continue and the release of Season 2. The pandemic also made Lim realise that he was probably not reaching out to as many people, as few could afford his one-on-one coaching sessions, so on 21 February, LITO Academy, a membership programme, was launched, which would allow him to coach many people at the same time.

As a Member of ONE°15 Marina Sentosa Cove, Lim is also looking forward to coorganising some webinars and workshops on mental and emotional health at the Club. “I really treasure having a good deep and meaningful conversation with one human being at a time. But I have realised that [with the group sessions], I am having unscalable conversations, while at the same time, I am scaling my conversations. It energises me. This is my calling now,” says Lim.