The lockdown due to COVID-19 has introduced a sudden pause in nearly everyone’s lives. Well, it is definitely a jolt, but instead of lamenting on what we cannot change, it’s time to turn things in our favour. It’s time that we rethink what we’ve always wanted to do, and restart with working towards those things. It can be anything from pursuing your interests to even just sleeping the entire day, after all, nurturing the mental health is important as well.

SheThePeople has always encouraged conversations on varied topics through its fests, summits and online sessions. When we must practice social distancing, what can be better than an online session with some of India’s top speakers, sharing their journeys and experiences during the lockdown. Pooja Dhingra, a renowned Indian pastry chef and author shares her experiences in what’s a freewheeling conversation on many things that matter to us all. Our time, talent, challenges and our story ahead.

Lockdown Is A Big Pause In Our Routine

“It’s been rough. I’ve been home for the last nine days. But this is the first time that I’ve got time for myself. Like, I don’t have to answer phone calls about work and this hasn’t happened in the last 10 years. I slept, I read, I ate, I read some more, I tried to stay away from all the panic and anxiety, the combined panic and anxiety that I was picking up every time I would go on Twitter, affecting my mental health,” says Pooja.

Below are highlights from her conversation with Shaili Chopra, founder of SheThePeople.

Also Read: How Are Indian Sportswomen Spending Time While Social Distancing

Pressing The Restart Rethink Button

“In the time of crisis, it is always about looking inward. Like time to realise that what I haven’t focused on in the last couple of years for myself. It’s such a great time for learning. And I think that it’s different for everyone. So if you feel like you should stay in bed, then that’s what you should do. There’s no fixed formula for life, like learn, learn and learn. People are putting too much pressure even in the free time they have now. I took a few days off. And when that was done, I made a list of the things I want to do.”

Don’t Marinate Yourself In The Panic

“It is a stressful situation for any business owner. Like, we don’t know what’s gonna happen, all the bills are piling up. So, it’s definitely a tough time. It’s kind of important to figure out how to find the balance between knowing what is happening, figuring out a plan for yourself, speaking to the people who are going through the same situation, so you don’t feel alone. Do what’s important for you.”

Also Read: What Keeps Us From Discussing Mental Health With Friends?

Picking Up Challenges That Are Different From Your Business Stream

“It has to be something I resonate with, it has to be something I’ve always wanted to do, and I’ve never done. And honestly, I feel like my plans choose me. For example, learning French- I lived in France for a while, I lived in Switzerland. While I always tried to understand French, there was a time when I realized that I wanted to speak it as well. The universe gives us signs.”

A New Challenge for 2020.

Pooja Dhingra had planned to climb Mt. Fuji in 2020 as her big challenge but due to the COVID-19 outbreak that is now on the back burner. She has decided to instead do her first Open Mic Stand Up this year for which she is training with comedian Rohan Joshi. Here’s wishing Pooja the very best. We can’t wait to see her new avatar.

Also Read: WoMoneyKiBaat: This Couple Is Breaking Major Stereotypes

Get the best of SheThePeople delivered to your inbox - subscribe to Our Power Breakfast Newsletter. Follow us on Twitter , Instagram , Facebook and on YouTube, and stay in the know of women who are standing up, speaking out, and leading change.