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Wednesday, 10 August 2016

My Wellness Journey!

Ancient Hindu culture had divided life in four stages – student, householder, retired and renunciation. Indulgence with material things was permitted in household life, which would span for 20+ years. After that person would start preparing for renunciation, by slowly handing over the responsibility to younger generation and taking advisory role for the time being.

Minimalism – a new normal in western culture has some flavor from our roots.

Since I am in a wellness profession, I strongly believe that holistic wellness culture in family or society can be imbibed, if we start practicing simple (minimalistic) lifestyle. Joining an expensive gym or hiring a celebrity trainer would only defeat the objective. 

Let me share my journey in this space. I have spent two decades in corporate life, climbing the ladder from individual contributor to managing a large business. As we all know, with growth comes higher remuneration. Beyond a point, we start indulging into “wants,” well supported by consumer led society.

It is very difficult to draw a line between wants & needs. It varies from people to people. As we look at our peers, we get drawn in indulgence.

When I started 2mpower in 2009, first thing I decided to do is to use public transport for commuting, as much as possible. This helped me take more STEPS everyday, at the same time allowed me to be with people, who struggle to meet ends everyday. This was the most difficult step in adopting simple lifestyle, as I was used to chauffeur driven cars.

Once I was able to adapt to this, it was much easier for me to give away branded items, and use minimalistic items, be it clothing, stationary, food or other lifestyle accessories. I knew that, if I do not give them, it would be anyway stolen in my daily commute. Plus it allowed me to be one with other folks travelling in the public transport.

I gave-up my lifetime membership in 7-start hotel for health club, and decided to be on open spaces for my running and other physical activities. I started using public space much better, and started to appreciate some of the large lung spaces we have in our city. Very recently, I have started bare-foot running, and that has really relieved me from worrying about my footwear. Now, I can run anywhere, anytime in barefoot.

As a family, we have started this journey, and have set milestones every year for simplifying our lifestyle.

Before America start exporting this “minimalistic” life to our country, the way it has done for Yoga, I think we should look back at our roots. Wisdom hides there in abundance!

As GetActive, we continue to focus in helping corporate to become ACTIVE, by increasing employees activity levels to 10,000 STEPS. We encourage walking, in small measures all through the day. And help build a lifelong habit of staying active & healthy.

My Entrepreneurship…

Startup & entrepreneurship is a new normal in professional journey.

Educational qualifications have changed from postgraduate degrees to college dropouts. Professional experience qualification as an employee is boring.

A sudden shift in “reference” based on few DATA points is mind-boggling.

Another thing, which worries me, is the yardstick of success in the startups.

When I started 2mpower, my focus was to bring a change in people’s lifestyle, to make them healthier, thereby reduce the burden of man-made chronic diseases on individual, family & on society at large.

As a founder, I firmly believed in practicing healthy & holistic lifestyle. My family adopted it whole-heartedly. And we stared influencing our friends and acquaintances slowly.
Our initial years were spent learning the human behavior and psychology. Iterations were made constantly, as we learn what is working and what is not.

Austerity was practiced to conserve the small capital we had invested to experiment this concept. Later, when our friends & family gave us more money, we continued to use every penny to perfect the model.

Money raised subsequently was looked at as an obligation to return. And keep the trust of our well wishers.

While some of this ethos exists in many startups, the societal pressure on success yardsticks is corrupting the DNA of entrepreneurship.

This is similar to education, where we rank the school based on the remuneration packages offered to its students. Not on the knowledge & wisdom imparted during the tenure.

Entrepreneurship is great. It helps evolve you as a human, make you responsible for the society you live, and help create wealth for people.

Every individual should experience this journey in true spirits. Once you start treading this path, it is a marathon race. While you will reach the finish line sooner or later, enjoy the trials & tribulations, successes & failures, and joy of not cheering from the sidelines!

As GetActive, we continue to focus in helping corporate to become ACTIVE, by increasing employees activity levels to 10,000 STEPS. We encourage walking, in small measures all through the day. And help build a lifelong habit of staying active & healthy.

Monday, 4 July 2016

I Reset my CLOCK!

I grew up in a modest town so lush and so vast that the eyes would often wonder where to wander. As you step out into the courtyard you are welcomed by a misty morning, the scent of which disseminates into your senses.

The first ritual in the morning was to walk a good mile & a half to the milk society to buy fresh milk. The walk was so effortless and fulfilling that the day unwinds with the thought that you get to do the same thing the next morning. It was during this morning ritual that all dreams would unfurl before you. It’s like wearing a pair of Google glasses and stepping into a world of virtual reality. A time that you spend for yourself, on yourself, just you and your soul.

As time passed by, I had to let go of the luxuries of a sumptuous and fulfilling life to take on bigger challenges in life. I migrated to a city on the pretext of getting a job and running a family. My whole life was bustling with so many activities that I felt the “this is it” moment; not realizing that there was something ugly and disheveled lurking behind me, ready to engulf me as a person. For the first time in life I felt how miserable it was to feel lazy and still be contented with that realization.

I lost the reigns to my true self. I dreaded the new me. That was the point where I decided to get hold of the reigns. With all the goodness of my childhood memories still intact, I decided to act.

The mornings were still divine; the path was still alive, if not lush and vast. I was not completely lost; I could still gather the lost fragments of a happier me. I took on to a disciplined morning routine, which involved:
  • Drinking a tumbler of warm water
  • A brisk walk to the nearby park
  • Friendly chats with fellow walkers

There was “Life” outside the life I had confined myself to. This routine made me happy. When I was happy, the people around me looked happy and there was positivity all around. I felt like my childhood days had returned. I felt younger again.

Often in life, it is so easy to lose yourself to factors and elements that are so insignificant and yet most important at one point in time. I had to look further ahead in my life to realize that it’s never too late to take care of yourself. It’s alright to succumb to such fallacies. What differentiates the doers from the rest is the courage to do something so important for our self, in turn reinforcing a strong faith in our self and our capabilities.

Our destination remains intact; but how we walk it up is all that matters; so GetActive!

@GetActive, we encourage walking, in small measures all through the day. And help build a lifelong habit of staying active & healthy. 

GetActive has been working with more than 100,000 users in 50+ corporates. We encourage walking, in small measures all through the day. And help build a lifelong habit of staying active & healthy.



Contribution: Mohammed Hussain Naseem – CEO | mohammed@getactive.co
2mpower Health Management Services Private Ltd.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

High-5 for Walking

My friend and I were arguing. "I'll never find parking there," I said exasperatedly.
 
“What kind of an excuse is that to not come home!” she was angry and hurt. “Why can’t you walk?” She wasn’t exactly next-door, but she was not very far from where I lived either. I never walked to her house. Driving is less a necessity and more a habit for me.
 
"But it'll take so long," I whined.
 

"I have all the time. Let's meet in an hour." End of discussion.

That's how I set out half-heartedly and discovered five more benefits of walking:
  1. I learnt to enjoy my own company: Walking helped me focus. On what's happening around me and inside me. "That store looks so small, every time I drive by," I thought. It was really quite large. "I didn't know that tree had such pretty flowers!" I'd driven by the tree practically a thousand times, lost in my own world. Now, I was completely in the present as I engaged with my senses and my surroundings.
  2. I automatically slowed down: I looked at people. I observed the traffic. I noticed an old man covering his head from the merciless sun and waiting to cross the street as vehicles rushed past him. I knew immediately I'm one of those drivers and I was acutely embarrassed.
  3. I discovered more about my area: I only knew one route to my friend's house. When I agreed to walk, my friend told me how I could cut the distance in half and avoid the traffic. After 23 years of living in this locality, I discovered a new street. And it had a beautiful park as well! Where had I been?
  4. I learnt I'm more approachable when I walk: I ran into a lady who I've seen often on my street as I'm rushing out of home. We immediately recognized each other though we'd never spoken till now. She looked surprised (to discover that I had legs that worked, perhaps!) and offered me a tentative smile. We struck up a conversation and inevitably discovered that we had common connections. She would never have flagged me down when I was driving to say ‘hello' and I wouldn't have stopped to do it either.
  5. I actually reached faster: This one really surprised me. It took me less time to walk to my friend's house than to drive!

And of course, the best benefit: I didn't have to worry about parking.
 


GetActive has been working with more than 100,000 users in 50+ corporates. We encourage walking, in small measures all through the day. And help build a lifelong habit of staying active & healthy.Do you want to explore more benefits on walking and share with us? Please write us at care@getactive.in.



Contribution: Mohammed Hussain Naseem – CEO | mohammed@getactive.co
2mpower Health Management Services Private Ltd.

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Buddy Walking

Although Hippocrates advocated the benefits of walking centuries earlier, it still takes a lot of convincing to adopt walking as our way of life.


We are fast turning into a world of sedentary workers with overactive cerebral cortexes but inactive bodies. Our list of excuses against exercise is long - from "not having time" to thinking that "exercise means yoga or Pilates, which needs special training." But, surprisingly, it is the most unassuming form of exercise that wins the health race hands down!


Many studies are fast recognizing walking as one of the most effective forms of exercise. A 30-minute walk anytime during the day significantly increases the lifespan, burns calories, and improves fitness levels. Organizations such as the American Medical Association have confirmed that brisk walking mitigates the progress of diabetes, heart diseases, Parkinson's disease, varicose veins, and arthritis.

 

Brisk walking is also a stress-buster as it releases endorphin, our body's natural stress relievers, leading to the many "eureka" moments we often experience after a brisk walk.


Walking becomes boring after a while. Hence walking with your friends (buddies) can help in overcoming this limitation. Buddy walking creates competition, motivates thru’ peer pressure, and more importantly it makes walking FUN.


What if your organization has a concept of buddy walking? This can have many advantages:
  • Inspire employees to enjoy walking
  • Build a healthy competitive spirit within the organization
  • Encourage every employee to take frequent walking breaks
  • Increase the energy levels & improve concentration


And if technology can be integrated in corporate walking regime thru’ mobile phones, wearable devices and smart Apps, walking can become a DNA of that organization.
 


Is that possible? Of course, it is. All you need to do is to connect with GetActive team.

 

GetActive has been working with fortune 500 clients in improving employee engagement, overall energy levels, and in reducing work stress. GetActive platform has in-built competitive events, and individual challenges. These are FUN and engaging for employees.




Contribution: Mohammed Hussain Naseem – CEO | mohammed@getactive.co
2mpower Health Management Services Private Ltd.