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Inspiring All Genders on International Women’s Day 2018 – With Sonalee Kumar

March 8, 2018 at 4:37 PM  •  Posted in More than cooking, Special Events by  •  0 Comments

17553562_1885857691655894_1846813430022112900_nImage Courtesy | The Crumpled Paper | @crumpledpaperproductions17

Blue, the colour of the sky and the sea. A sign of depth and stability. A sign of being calm, yet powerful. Omnipresent – like the sky and the sea. Blue was coincidentally also the colour of the top worn by Sonalee the day i interviewed her and it matched her personality so much.

Last month, on account of it being World Cancer Day, we decided to interview Sonalee not as a patient but as a cansurvivor. Someone who would help us spread the message that Cancer or any obstacle in life, does not have to be the entire book, but only a chapter. I walked in knowing that i’d be inspired, but to which degree – i was still unsure.
Sonalee is the co founder of TCCGGD – a full service communications agency based out of New Delhi, that handles several star brands of the country. You see the confidence in her – the confidence to run a show like this in an arena where there are several big stars.

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Sonalee Kumar, Director TCCGGD

A Beyonce in the world of Kanyes, Anderson .Paaks and Jay Zs. She is also a survivor of Cancer, or how we see it – a survivor of a major obstacle.

What she shared was inspiring not just for women, but all. To get over an obstacle, with confidence and strength – and love for self -  is what we wish to share with you, on this women’s day. While she was still quite young ( I was 37 so not that young !), Sonalee’s father was diagnosed with cancer which unfortunately took his life. That’s when the “fear” first took place in her. Several years later, she was diagnosed with the same disease. It’s a situation where you ask a lot of whys. Why me, why now, why this. But the situation does not go, unless you make it. Here is when your belief in yourself, your strength and positivity comes to play.As i spoke to Sonalee, i learnt a lot about how one can over come any obstacle in life.

Step 1  – “Take it easy and be kind to yourself”

You are the ultimate – respect yourself and your emotions, especially when you find yourself facing an obstacle.  “Doctor’s can help only a little, rest is up to you.” is something she shared. Although she had a great set of doctors and support groups, she believes that having confidence in yourself goes a long way. Aakanksha Kapoor, an ex employee of Sonalee shared that even during her chemotherapy, she would come to work – nothing stopped her. “That was quite inspiring – the will to beat the disease and live well. Even with us – she was strong and supportive yet pushed us to be independent. That’s why I’ve learnt so much.”
Believing in yourself, having that confidence – it helps a lot in times of struggle.

Step 2 – “99.9 % of the people are amazing”

Sonalee personally had great support from her family, friends and her doctors while she was getting her treatment done. She believes that most (“99.9%”) people are amazing. Trust in people around you – talk to them, express yourself, vent it out. A lot of our stress and troubles grow because we keep them within us. If it helps, join support groups! These can even be in the form of book clubs, group dance classes, sports .. the options to be with like minded, positive people are a plenty!

Step 3 – Sensitize

This is for the people who are around someone facing an obstacle. “Keep your conversation neutral, talk about things you would with others, be around, but don’t push yourself or force yourself to be there! Be normal, like you would be with anyone else.” There is a fine line between being oblivious, to not thinking about your problems constantly. A friend is supposed to make you see the real situation, just from a comfortable angle. Be that friend.

Step 4 – Walk towards a healthy lifestyle 

Sometimes facing an obstacle leaves you with a lot of good, than bad. Being a cancer patient, Sonalee had to or wanted to make several changes in her life. She began eating and living healthy – following the lifestyle of Ayurveda, consuming and using organic goods and exercising every day. “No one will take care of you like you do. Balance – don’t stress on diets, accept what works for you and what doesn’t. Gradual changes work well for beginners. Like they say, small steps go a long way.”

Step 5 - “Do stuff for yourself!”

A thing that really made me smile while i spoke to Sonalee was when she told me that she takes her holidays very seriously. Work hard but play harder! “Do stuff for yourself! I work hard but i never miss out on going on holidays. I love going near the water, walking cities, visiting my nephews in South Africa/ Dubai!…”. Being happy is key- a happier you can tackle an obstacle in a much better way than otherwise.

 Quite often we find ourselves in a difficult situation. The degree of it’s difficulty might change – but what doesn’t, is who we are as a person and our attitude towards solving our problems. At the end, you are the only one who can work towards making things right for yourself. 

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