‘Stay Rooted With Gratitude’

Prasad KULKARNI responds to ThinkWellness360 questionnaire.

Your view on beauty?

Beauty, in my view, is a fleeting, momentary, or transitory entity. I’ve always felt that our view of beauty is largely vanity-based. It is fuelled, for the most part, by the media. Beauty, for me, ought to emerge from deep within — one that mirrors the soul of a person and radiates their beauty from the inside out. This is primarily because our inner beauty always scores a point, or two, over its physical counterpart, any day. Think about it — we often come across people who touch the inner core of our being like no other. Just a few minutes spent with them leaves a lasting impression. This is, for me, true beauty, and such people are a rare find — like a diamond in a goldmine. This has been an on-going, riveting foray for me to analysing what makes such people special and also to imbibing certain especial aspects of their being.

Your ‘take’ on fitness?

I’ve always believed that our physicality is ‘wired’ to our mental expanse. The two hold the key for all aspects of wellness. Mental fitness has assumed a larger dimension, because a healthy body can only dwell in a healthy mind, and vice versa. To keep the mind healthy and fit, it needs a good, healthy diet. This diet has to be a right mix of input and thought. Since most of the inputs are either visual, or audio cues, their quality matters most — in every way you’d think of. Picture this: a simple exercise of using a red sketch pen in the daily newspaper to circle ‘all the things that are going bad in this world’ was conducted by our family. We were horrified to seeing the pages in their entirety being covered in crimson. We immediately stopped reading the newspapers and also watching news channels. This has been one of the most important decisions we have made. And, we have no regrets about it. For folks who think news is important —well, we are in no position to shape it, albeit whatever is critical always finds its way to us anyway, wherever you look, or turn. Physical fitness is different — it may be performed while working, or doing daily chores, around the house, and focusing on your diet.

Your view of health and wellness? 

The only thing that stays with us as individuals, until the end, is our body. It is, therefore, imperative to be aware of this inevitable allegory at all points in time of our lives. Life is a journey, a marathon, lasting our lifespan. To live a fulfilling life, the body and mind must be in perfect sync with each other, and also in tune with our ever-changing environment that we dwell, or live in — not just exist. It is not only the physical realm that we should be concerned with, but all other dimensions that make us up as individuals.

Your ‘take’ on work-life balance?

A popular aphorism says, ‘Work until your bank balance represents your mobile number.’ The question that immediately pops up in my mind is, “At what cost?” I’ve always believed that work is the outcome of the need for the individual to be financially independent, along with the need for creative expression, while focusing diligently on the former. Yes, we are constantly striving to get a larger piece of the pie by putting in longer hours at work. Many times, we’ve bitten more than what we can chew and struggle to manage the responsibilities undertaken. There is a fine balance. It purports to a trial-and-error method — one that helps us find the middle ground, or the Zen path. I’m convinced that one should undertake work with the motto, ‘Do what you love and love what you do.’ In the event one of them overwhelms the other, just s-t-o-p.

Your mantra to beat stress?

It’s quintessentially a deep focus on gratitude. I believe that the most important facet of life, a game-changer, perforce, ought to help us beat stress, without sweating the small stuff. I think of all the blessings and tell myself that there are people who may not be as fortunate as I am to receive as much as I have received. No problem, if one were to think of it as a case of a ‘glass half-empty, or half-full,’ including our perception of it. I’m always grateful for the blessings that have made me what I am today; also tomorrow. I tell myself each day, ‘If you are worried about how far you have to go, think of how far you have come.’ I am, I believe, the sum of all the experiences that have come to me, and I feel wholly blessed. This thought helps me to stay grounded with the firm belief that all things — good, or not-so-good — are just transient, or ephemeral.

PRASAD KULKARNI, an engineer by profession and a banker by accident, has significant managerial and operational experience across diverse industries, viz., manufacturing, information technology, education and financial services, across the globe. He’s spent over two decades helping corporates attain their objectives, using new-age concepts of Lean, Six Sigma and TRIZ technologies. He turned entrepreneur in 2013 and spends a significant amount of time following his passion for Renewable Energy and helping clients attain their Clean Energy goals. He is CEO of BigSwitch India, a company, now in its 11th year of operations, which specialises in helping individuals, societies, educational institutions, commercial enterprises and multi-nationals incorporate sustainability as a way of life, while juggling triple bottom lines. When he is not flexing his mental muscles to saving the world, you may find him playing Nintendo. He insists on pontificating that he married his ex-girlfriend, Puja, now his wife. The happy-go-lucky couple is blessed with twin boys, who are, at times, just ‘three-much.’ He lives in Mumbai, India.

10 thoughts on “‘Stay Rooted With Gratitude’

  1. Amar Shelar says:

    Well articulated, Prasad. I agree, we are bombarded with so much negativity and artificial glamour through the media that it makes us hollow from within, and ‘inclines’ us towards a never-ending race of multiplying possessions to maintain our social status. We may win this external competition but at the cost of losing our inner beauty.

  2. Shalini Nair says:

    This is such a wonderful read, PK. Very impressed. There’s a little gem that stays with me: “If you are worried about how far you have to go, think of how far you have come.” Indeed.

  3. Ganesh Bhat says:

    Beautiful, deep-rooted expression of thoughts, PK. You’d be an author too, man. Lots of ‘dietary’ inputs for a healthy mind and also body.

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