‘That Song & Dance Of Life’

Koonal BHANDARI responds to ThinkWellness360 questionnaire.  

Your view on beauty?

Beauty, as I understand, is a delightful ‘distraction.’ It materialises when I manage to steal a moment of tranquillity in my life. It also simply revels in the world around me. Picture this. When I ‘pause’ time and take a deep breath, while observing my grandma comfortably settled on the sofa and engrossed in her favourite novels, or catching my mom unwinding, it fills my heart with warmth and affection. I just can’t help but feel a profound sense of beauty emanating from their serene expressions. Their kind and smiling faces, filled with selfless love, create a kaleidoscopic synthesis of inexpressible beauty that touches the vast, [in]tangible depths of my soul too. This is, to me, the epitome of beauty in its purest and most heartfelt form.

Your ‘take’ on fitness?

Fitness, in my view, is a journey. I have dabbled with it, now and then, for over a decade. It’s been just a year, or so, that I earnestly decided to take it seriously. Agreed that I struggled to managing the fatigue that comes from pushing oneself to the limits, before I embarked on a consistent workout routine. However, as I gradually organised my daily schedule and committed to my regular gym sessions, or much-loved Salsa classes, I began to experience the therapeutic essence of exercising. Being fit is not just about physical fitness; it’s mental and emotional wellness too. I find solace in the rhythmic movements, and my worries seem to fade away as I immerse myself in each exercise, or dance step. This ‘new-found’ commitment to fitness has not only improved my physical health, but it has also become an essential part of my overall well-being. It boosts my confidence; it helps me embrace life’s several challenges with renewed vigour.

Your view of health and wellness?

My view of health and well-being revolves around three fundamental pillars that I hold dear: physical exercise, clean, nutritious food and good sleep. While I admit there are times when I struggle to balance them in the midst of our hectic life, I firmly believe that being aware and making a genuine effort to prioritising them is crucial for a fulfilling life. Taking care of my health and well-being isn’t about perfection, but rather about progress and mindfulness. I’ve come to understand that self-compassion and flexibility are essential when life gets demanding. Celebrating the small victories, or learning from setbacks, is what drives me forward on this journey of self-improvement. I also believe that investing in my health and well-being is the most valuable gift I can give to myself to leading a fulfilling and purposeful life while nurturing meaningful connections with people who bring joy and love to my world.

Your ‘take’ on work-life balance?

For an entrepreneur, I’ve always reckoned that work-life balance is an ever-present challenge. The drive to keep pushing and seeking new opportunities for my online music school is, at times, too demanding. Managing my team and ensuring smooth functioning take a significant portion of my time and attention, all right. However, what’s heart-warming is sharing the sound, also gift, of music with young kids from across the world — it adds sunshine to my bearings, as also life. I take pride in stating that our community is diverse — it is also a well-balanced inclusive space. It’s a fact that balancing my professional ambitions with personal commitments becomes more than significant when I realise that certain individuals are dependent on me. This is not just about maintaining a successful business, but also about being present for my loved ones and nurturing such precious relationships that create a fine work-life, life-work, balance.

Your mantra to beat stress?

My personal mantra to beating stress revolves around cherishing things that bring me happiness. I always make it a point, in the hustle and bustle, if not the ‘grind’ of daily life, to carve out moments to engage in activities that truly light up my soul. Whether it’s strolling through the mall, savouring a steaming cup of coffee, shopping, or unwinding at home and basking in the warmth of my family’s company, I am mindful of the inevitability of burnout too. I address it all with self-care and making time for the things I love. This simple mantra serves as my guiding light, allowing me to recharge and regain balance amidst life’s innumerable challenges. Remember — when you embrace nature and nurture your happiness and well-being, you cultivate a sense of resilience that empowers you to face stress. It renews your innate strength and optimism too.

KOONAL BHANDARI is Founder-Chief Executive and principal mentor at Sonata Music Academy, a glocal online music foundation, that welcomes students from across the world. Aside from managing his academy, Bhandari finds immense joy in his role as a Piano teacher. While music has always been his passion, also driving force, teaching provides him the wherewithal to imparting his musical talent to his students and others. This, he says, makes each day incredibly fulfilling for him. He is also Co-Founder of Bohemia and Co, an event and talent management company that provides up-and-coming artists with a viable platform — one that nurtures and showcases their talents. He lives in Navi Mumbai, India.

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