Be selfless and help each other have become my life mantra
Earlier, when something happens I didn't bother about it thinking someone else will take care of it. I used to consider that I am not part of the problem. But the pandemic has changed my perspective about life. Now, I believe that I am also a part of the problem and at the same time, I can be a solution to it as well. For the past year, I am doing whatever I can do -- it has become a habit now. I have taken multiple initiatives and was able to help many people and animals. I could also inspire some to join the relief works. Instead of saying that I am not part of the problem and others will take care of it, I started finding solutions to the problems. If you think/believe you can do something, then you have to do it and it will become a change that can help many. This is a habit I picked up after the pandemic and I would want to hold on to it forever. Currently, I am in Nilgiris volunteering. I could have stayed back in Chennai saying that the city is more comfortable because it is my hometown. But I didn’t do that - instead, I packed my bags as soon as I heard that cases are increasing in Coimbatore. The whole journey has made me more empathetic and compassionate. When something goes wrong our default nature is to blame the government, politicians, and people around. This habit of blaming has gotten us into worse scenarios. If this attitude change, we can see a lot of difference in our society.
— Preejo TJ, volunteer
Cherishing the family bonding
Most of us have learned and unlearned many things during the pandemic. In the past year, my family has started a habit of having all the meals together. We all look forward to our daily three meals — we talk about things happening around and also discuss what’s happening in our lives. Also, as a family, we have started doing yoga and exercises together on alternative days. All these daily rituals have strengthened our family bond.
— Mahesh Venkateswaran, founder of MadRasana
Fitness and family time have become priorities
I have started exploring new and fun ways to stay fit. Some of them that I tried recently and enjoyed are following dance videos, kickboxing and jump rope variations. I have also started finding time to read new books. Some of the books I’ve read recently are Where did you go Bernadette, Red Rising, The Path to Holistic Healing and the Mistborn series. Game nights with the family have been a really fun way to bond and get to know each other. Some of the games we play are sequence, code names and monopoly deals.
— Shahin Ansari, co-founder of Maalgaadi
Decluttering my mind in the morning by writing helps me to process my emotions
Four years ago, my mentor architect Ajit Rao introduced a book to us called The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. The method of writing 'morning pages' comes from this book. It was designed to help artists break through their creative blocks and get back to creating. Ajit sir has been writing 'morning pages' for the past ten years and I have been wanting to start this habit. But it got delayed. A few days ago, some of my friends and I decided to start writing 'morning pages' daily. The idea is to wake up early in the morning and write three pages of any thoughts from our minds. We also have a daily Google meet where we share the experiences of writing. All this should be over before sunrise. In our WhatsApp group, there are more than 50 members but 5-10 people only join for the Google meet. I love this activity and will continue to do this.
— Arunima Shankar, co-founder of Akarmaa Foundation