In Conversation with Sanch !

In continuation of the series of Guest Blogging, I am excited to have Sanch to write a guest post over my blog today. Sanch maintains two blogs – Living my Imperfect Life and Sanch Writes and I admire her for successfully managing multiple roles single-handedly.

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Here’s a sneak peek to a day in her life:-

I dream of a day when I can call myself a professional writer/psychologist. In a day of multiple careers and professions, having a ‘slash’ as part of your title is not an uncommon feature. Sadly, in my case, it’s still stuck at one profession and another dream I work towards.

You see, I’m not a professional writer or blogger. Sure, I may occasionally earn money through my blogs but that is quite a rarity. So what does a day in my life as a blogger look like?

Well, for starters, I wake up early. Even on cold mornings like we have today, I aim to wake up by 5 a.m. I actually wake up only fifteen or twenty minutes later and then rush to get myself to the gym. Exercise is essential for me, not just for my physical health but my mental health too. I work out till about seven and then head to my work by eight. I work as a child and adolescent psychologist and my days are busy. Luckily though, in my current job, there is a fair amount of outreach work required. Which means I can be on the road heading to homes and schools of clients. This time on the road helps me think about things I might want to write about or stories I’d like to tell. Unfortunately, I also lose a lot of these stories as there is no means to actually jot down those ideas!

After a hectic day at work, I’m usually home by 6 p.m. I have dinner first as I’m always starving, spend time with my fur-babies and then settle on my favourite spot on the couch with a cup of herbal tea and my laptop. This is where the writing magic happens. Depending on what’s percolating in my brain, I either write a creative piece on my writing blog or else, a personal piece about life or reflections on my personal blog. I tend to schedule it for the day after so that it greets readers bright and early. I spend the rest of the time trying to engage with other bloggers by reading their posts and sharing the same.

Every night, without fail, I will end up going to bed later than I’d planned because I’m either caught up with my own writing or reading others. I wish I had more hours in a day. I wish I had the time to reply to comments on my own blog. I wish I had time to engage more.

Yet, I am aware just how precious these moments are.

Maybe someday, I can wake up early, hit the gym, then come back home to write away at least two or three times a week. Someday.

Until then, this will continue to be the days in my life.


I would like to thank Sanch for sharing a day with us and look forward to reading more of her wonderful writings. You can follow her on Facebook or Twitter to read her work.

In Conversation with Vasantha Vivek!

There are some people who will keep on doing their work and you would never know about their greatness until you know them better. I found this awesome blogger and fell in love with her writings and their simplicity. I am happy to have Vasantha Vivek over my blog today, in continuation of the series of Guest Blogging.

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Vasantha blogs at mysweetnothings.in . She loves to call herself as a happy woman, daughter, sister, wife, mother, teacher, friend, mentor, seeker, lover. She’s from Kovilpatti, a small town of Southern Tamilnadu of India. She’s a teacher by profession. She worked as a professor at an Engineering College for nearly 15 years. She has learnt a lot as a teacher. She hopes that she had inspired some hearts during that period.  Teaching is her passion Reading is her love. Cooking is her heart. She enjoys reading and writing very much. She starts & ends her days with reading.

She’s guest authoring on various sites like Indian Moms Connect, Monsoon Breeze, Parentous, Women’s Web, mycity4kids & World of Moms. She has been featured on The Times Of Amma, Stories of Motherhood!, Smart Indian Women.

This is her typical day as a Blogger:-

5:00 AM: My day starts with two-line prayer at 5 am. Followed by morning routines and a glass of Methi Water.

5.10 AM: Mostly, I love mindful mornings. It always starts with a short prayer at my most favorite pooja room. The aroma of agarbhathis fills my heart and soul.

5.15 AM: As I am an ISHA follower, I never want to miss my Sambhavi Mahamudra practice in the mornings. It is followed by 10 minutes simple workouts. I love spending time watching, feeding and watering the birds at my terrace after my yoga and meditation.

6.15 AM: I help in cooking with my maid. I enjoy listening to mesmerizing bhakti songs on TV for one hour.

8.30 AM: I go to our nearest Vinayaga Temple most of the days. I spend nearly half an hour reciting slogans, mantras and sing songs at that temple.

9:00  AM: Simple south Indian breakfast.

10 AM to 1 PM: I do my blogging work of reading, writing, commenting and sharing. I prefer to reply to all my reader who has left their loving comments on my posts. Customizing of my blog will be done once in a while. I love to encourage new bloggers. Blogging groups help me to connect with many fabulous bloggers.

1.30 PM: Simple south Indian lunch.

3.00 PM: It’s my personal time. Mostly I will be reading magazines, newspapers or otherwise write in my journal. Spent some time sitting in silence mindfully. It helps me to energize myself for the rest of the day.

4.30 PM: My son returns from home. And it’s our chat/coffee/snacks time. We enjoy it to the most by sharing our day, cracking jokes, singing silly songs.

6.30 PM: My detailed pooja time. I spent nearly 30 minutes in doing elaborate traditional pooja with aarthi, mantras and silence.

7.30 PM: Family dinner time. All of us sit together and have our dinner. This is the time which bonds us more.

8.30 PM: Study time for my son. TV time for my hubby and again reading time or house chore time for me.

10:00 PM: Our good night sleep time. We spent a little time with bedtime stories earlier. But now, it had turned into cricket/movie talk, exploring science and mystery, planning for next day and like that.

4.45 AM Next Day: My mobile alarm rings and blessed with another happy day.


Vasantha has inspired me to focus on mindfulness and meditation. I am grateful to her for instilling this spirit in me which is helping me focus on my never-ending tasks.

You can follow Vasantha at Facebook  or Twitter to know more about her.

In Conversation with Tina Basu!

There are times when I am not able to finish one important task and then I see people handling work, looking after kids, taking up all the challenges in life and managing everything so well and most importantly living Life.

There are many bloggers who inspire others with their stories and writings. In continuation of the series of Guest Blogging , today I have Tina Basu,who is a freelance writer, author, blogger, graphic designer and a food enthusiast. When she is not running around a little hyperactive munchkin she blogs at Tina Basu – Being Real Not Perfect where she writes, fictions, girly stuffs and hosts link parties and blog beautiful tutorials. Tina is a self-confessed food obsessed girl and all her love for food is reflected in her food blog Twinkling Tina Cooks.  Tina has been in the FMCG industry for over seven years working as a trade marketing and branding expert.

Here is Tina sharing  A Day in the Life of a Solopreneur Blogger:

There are two kinds of people who – wake up, get ready, rush to work, spend time in meetings, secretly loath the boss and the second kind who – wake up and start working – for themselves! There is no break, no holidays, no sick leaves but at the end of the day you know you are working for yourself and the only person who’ll gain from all the effort is YOU. I have recently promoted myself to the second kind from the first and am loving it.

So what do I do?

I do what I like to do – Write, Blog, Design, Bake – when I am not running after my one and a half year old power house of energy. So how does a day look like in the life of a solopreneur blogger? It all starts with the question WHY? Why should I waste my education? Why should I work for someone else? Why can’t I have it all? When I became a mom, I wanted to give enough time to my son and not leave him in care of anyone else. After having worked for 7 years in the FMCG sector there can be no way I can sit at home doing nothing! I am not meant for the ‘SAHM’ tag! So why not get both the sides of it? I made my passion for writing and designing a little business. We are in pup mode now but our baby steps will lead us to a foothold of its own.

How do I manage to be a mom and a mompreneur?

Managing work with a baby is a challenge. Some people manage to wake up early and start their work, but my son wakes up the moment I do, so that option of working early goes out of the window! I go to sleep with the iPad on my bed side table and when I wake up I read all my mails, Twitter interactions, DMs, Instagram comments, FB Page queries first thing in the morning till the rest of the house is sleeping.
My house help and cook are my saviors – I am heavily dependent on them so that I can focus on work while they take care of the house. The key is to schedule and plan work depending on the timelines given to clients. I take several breaks to give adequate time to my son as well. My only reason to quit my career in FMCG was – I wanted to be a hands-on mom and didn’t want to lose a second of his childhood. I had decided his bathing schedule, sleeping schedule, eating schedule will always be maintained by me. And I am happy that I still am being able to manage that. Bath time is our mom-son play time and I love to see him splash water everywhere. Feeding a toddler is a story in itself, the days he’s in a mood we get through it without bumps but the days he’s not in a mood it involves a lot of running around, story-telling and nursery rhymes on YouTube.

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When do I do serious work?

It is important that you do justice to your work. Most of my serious work – both writing and designing happens in the night after my son is asleep. I tend to work late hours (and this time without too much complains). The peace of the night is perfect for my kind of work and you of course enjoy the company of a good playlist on the iTunes.

Food Obsessed Girl

The birth of Twinkling Tina Cooks happened because I am obsessed with good food – not just any kind of food! I like collecting, curating and innovating recipes. This obsession about food comes from my folks – as a family we are all obsessed about good food! I cook/ bake in the mornings only to get the food shots in the natural light – which is amazing for food photography.

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Why I like what I do?

Currently, I am loving my space. I have huge plans for my baby biz and I am sure I’ll enjoy the journey even later. Blogging has opened new doors for me – meeting new people, reading new people, working with brands, events and so many things. It has taught me to manage myself online and offline.
I have been involved in trade marketing and branding for long enough to manage an entire advertising agency may be. But when I am doing it myself I am the boss, I am the creative director, I am my accounts department and I am my marketing and PR person too! That’s like – learning from grass root level!
Every day is action packed in life – that is exactly how I like it and it also makes sure I don’t have any Monday Morning Blues!


 

I appreciate Tina for sharing her day here and wish her a great journey ahead!.You can follow her on Twitter and Instagram for your daily dose of eyegasm!

 

 

In Conversation With Anamika Agnihotri!

Blogging is a different world altogether. You meet people, make new friends, encourage and motivate each other’s writings.

One day, while reading, I thought about knowing more about my fellow bloggers. I have not met them in person and this led to the curiosity to know them, about their lives and learn from their blogging journey.

And this inspired me to host posts from the bloggers I follow. I asked some of the bloggers and was extremely happy to hear positive responses.

Starting with the first in this series, I have Anamika Agnihotri, who writes at thebespectacledmother.com. She shares her parenting experiences in raising her 5-year-old son telling the funniest anecdotes as well as sharing some hands-on tips. She says, “Parenting is a tiring job and at times can tend to become daunting too. Over this period of time, I have learnt some and am still exploring the fine nuisances of it.”

Here is a sneak peek of the conversation:-

1-   Please tell something about yourself and your blog?

I am Anamika Agnihotri, a stay-at-home mother of a 5 year old boy. I am an introvert, an optimist, a spiritual seeker and an eternal learner.  After completing my MBA in 2004, I worked in the corporate sector for 9 years before giving up my job in 2013 when, as a family of 3, we shifted to UK owing to husband’s work. At present, I live in Bangalore. I am in love with my current role as a parent. This role ensures I get daily doses of lifelong wisdom from none other than my son. Ironic but true since this should have been the other way round. Apart from becoming wiser with each passing day, I am invested in raising a reader and I myself love all things books, reading and writing.

I blog at thebespectacledmother.com where I write about my everyday stories, book based discussions with my son and his never ending questions.

2- What inspired you to start your blog?

I always wanted to write. I had these (half-baked) stories boiling in my mind which never made sense to me but prodded me to write anyway. So I filled my diaries. I poured my passion into crafting the best work e-mails in office. I  wrote a skit for an office play for introducing my team in Six Sigma Presentation (which was great on paper but not at all good in execution).

When I began as a full time stay-at-home mother, I was a clueless, bewildered soul who struggled with parenting. I was losing my hair and my sleep. I was also battling with mild depression at that time. However, with passing time things started perking up. With some free time at my hand and also for deviating my mind, I started my blog to write about my struggles, my mental state and my occasional break-throughs with respect to raising my son..

3- How do you manage time to run your blog efficiently?

I have kept blogging pressure free for me since I did not want it to become yet another chore amongst a sea of other chores. I only blog once a week. I am committed to blogging on Mondays with my Monday Musings post. On rest of the weekdays, I devote 2 hours each day to reading, sharing and commenting on other blogs.

4- How do you motivate yourself to keep the blog up and running?

My motivation comes from the heartfelt interactions with other bloggers on my blog as well as theirs. I know who my audience is as a lot of readers are regular visitors who come to read my posts every week.  Also, because of the fact that my blog is an extension of me, I do not have to make extra efforts to keep it going.

5- What do you do when you aren’t working on your blog?

When not working on the blog, I run errands, take care of the house and check social media sites often in the midst of everything. I spend a lot of time reading whether it is reading my books or reading to my son or hearing him read out aloud to me. I also run a weekly book club on Friday evenings where I hold storytelling sessions for 4-6 year olds.

6- Can you name some of your favorite bloggers and tell why they are your favorites?

My most favourite blogger is Corinne Rodrigues. She writes about self-acceptance, compassion and gratitude. There is so much to learn from her and her blogs. She was the first person in the blogging world who generated confidence in me with respect to who I am, as a blogger and also as an individual.

The other bloggers whom I love to read and connect with are Shailaja Vishwanath, Tulika Singh, Nabanita Dhar, Esha Mookerjee-Dutta, Parul Thakur. The connection is the reason which makes them my favourites.

7- What is the biggest difference in your life post-blogging?

The love and acceptance that I received through blogging has made big differences in my life. The biggest difference is I am, at present, most comfortable in my skin.

8- What has been the one thing (blog post, project, etc) that you have been really proud of?

I have been especially proud of my article which got published in the June 2016 edition of the ‘Complete Wellbeing’ magazine. The article was about gifting the life-long love for books to the children, a topic closest to my heart.

9- If someone was interested in blogging, what would be a few things you would suggest?

I would suggest –

  1. Be authentic.
  2. Write from your heart.
  3. Invest in making genuine connections with fellow bloggers.

10-  Tell about your favorite: Book, Quote, Author, Song and Movie.

My favourite books are actually 2 –

Eleven Minutes by Paulo Coelho – This book did the same for me which Alchemist did for rest of the world. It got me in touch with my dreams, ambitions and belief in self. It moved me spiritually.

Zahir by Paulo Coelho – Zahir came to me when I was on the verge of making the life altercating decision to quit my job. This book spoke to me, almost jolting me to begin writing and honour my long time aspiration.

Quote ‘Control what is in your control‘. This is the quote from the Andre Agassi’s autobiography. I practically live my life on the basis of this quote.

Author – The most recent favourite one is Khalid Hosseni. I read all 3 of his works back to back a few months ago. What a story teller he is? I feel I know Afghanistan very well – the life and pain of Afghan people, the plight of Afghan women, Afghanistan from the olden times to the post-Taliban era. I couldn’t sleep for a couple of days after I read ‘A Thousand splendid Sons’. It was haunting.

Favourite movie – I hardly watch movies but there is one movie which I must have watched numerous times and it is English Vinglish‘. There is a considerable resemblance between the main protaganist played by Sridevi and my mother in the treatment she received from the rest of the family, gaslighting being the new term for it. Sridevi’s character was inspiring in her fight to overcome her shortcoming  of not knowing English. This movie reminds me that a housewife’s worth is not dependent on how her family sees her or treats her but how much she values herself. The world puts down those who fail to value themselves.

Song I do not have a favourite song.

I am really grateful to Anamika for taking out time for this interview. If you want to know more about Anamika, you can follow her at Facebook or Twitter.


Keep reading my space for the next guest post. You can write to me at throughthewindowoflife@gmail.com and I will be happy to host your post on some interesting topic.