Not long ago, Kola Braimah made multiple daily visits to courts and police stations. One arrest after the other, lawsuit after lawsuit, turned his life upside down.
Half the time, he was trying to recover money owed to Speedyfunds, the
erstwhile microfinance institution he established. The other half, he was
defending himself from lawsuits and accusations from depositors and creditors.
Kola had set up Speedyfunds with a value proposition around superior systems,
ruthless controls and an intimate understanding of the customer. His 20 years of
banking – first in operations, trade finance and accounts management in
Ecobank and then as Group Head of UBA’s commercial banking unit, had
armed him with all the tools he needed. Or so he thought.
But he hadn’t anticipated the fallout from the global financial crisis of 2008 and
the havoc it would wreak on his infant business: Businesses that had taken loans
could not pay back. Speedyfunds suffered a liquidity crash, unable to pay back
its investors, depositors and creditors.
Nine months and over US$1 million later, he closed shop, his entrepreneurship
Turbulent times and change of direction
Those were unimaginably stressful periods for Kola. “I had all sorts of
emotional, mental, spiritual and physical issues. Apart from my stressful experience
with Speedyfunds falling aside, I came to learn the extra stress of being accused
as a thief, which I was not, and also as somebody who was trying to catch a thief.
It was a bundle of distress, you can imagine,” he recounts when we met at his
facility, the LifeWellness Centre on the Spintex Road in Accra. The health crisis
he suffered led him to a naturopath who in turn helped Kola dramatically turn his life around.
Naturopathy, the system of natural health care based on the healing power of
nature, came to him at a time when orthodox medicine had been of little help in
dealing with his crises.
Indeed, Kola tells me that naturopathy’s holistic focus on treating ailments by
understanding the body, mind and spirit of a client was about the only way to
mend the broken man. He made a quick recovery, and made the decision to
extend the goodness to as many people as possible.
Naturopath to the rescue
Partnering with a naturopath, Kola set up a Wholistic Wellness business. “We
called it New Hope; new hope for me personally and new hope towards my own
sense of discovery”.
That business too failed. “We had to rethink the model. It was well ahead of its
time,” he explains.
Two failed businesses in quick succession, however, couldn’t stop Kola. If
anything, it strengthened his resolve to succeed in achieving his childhood
ambition of being his own boss. Two years ago, with the support of his mentor,
friends and relations he started the LifeWellness Center, to make a better
attempt at bringing the powerful healing of naturopathy to people seeking
alternative healthcare. He believes everyone should be their own primary care
He employs the services of over a dozen Wholistic Wellness consultant
practitioners and light workers, with a combined experience of over 200 years, providing services that range from physical therapies, emotional therapies,
mental therapies and energy medicine such as pranic healing, crystal healing,
chakral healing, shiatsu, acupressure, therapeutic massage, yoga, to wholistic
nutrition and herbalism.
A new passion
Consequentially, Kola – now a vegan for the past four years – has also become a
practitioner in his own right, training under some of the best practitioners in
Ghana and abroad, going as far as Columbus, Ohio, USA to acquire the
knowledge that would make him a practitioner. He is now an energy healer,
motivational speaker, health and wellness consultant and Herbalife distributor.
He is also an ABNLP certified NeuroLinguistic Practitioner as well as an
“We deal in physical, emotional, mental and spiritual therapies. Our specialty
lies in weight management, stress management, pain management and
emotional mental therapies as well as Energy Medicine. These four cover all
the health conditions that anybody might have,” he tells me.
His personal experiences dealing with stress means his solutions are not the ‘arm
chair’ sort, something his clients truly value.
The future is bright
Admittedly, Kola is a long way from the entrepreneur he always wanted to be.
But he’s certainly on his way to fulfilling his mission to deliver natural health,
wellness and fitness to anyone who comes asking.
More important though, he’s at peace with himself. Plus he is one of the few
previously overweight individuals I have met, who has been able to lose weight
significantly and keep it off – all with his own remedies of course!
For most of his banking career, Kola was rotund, his five feet six inches frame
struggling with over 110 kilos. Today, he is svelte, at 81 kilos and a picture of
wellness and peace. The key, Kola says are the ‘six doctors’: “gravitate towards
plant based food for nutrition; manage stress; get a lot of sunshine; clean air;
hydrate and exercise regularly; and always enjoy good quality sleep”.
For Kola, everything makes better sense now. All the difficulty from the years
before, had to be, so he could “discover his true-life purpose and fulfil it.” Since
he discovered it, life and business haven’t been the same.
With offices at Lashibi and Kokomlemle in Accra, LifeWellness Wholistic
Center (LWC) is empowering healthy lifestyles using food as the building blocks
and employing various natural protocols and therapies. They also provide
Corporate Wellness Education and Seminars as well as customized health and
Kola is on a mission to bring relief and wellness to the rest of the land. And
there is no stopping him.
Credit: Article first authored by Elikem Kuenyehia in Graphic Business and Graphic Online of April 13, 2016