Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Is Olympic a SPORTS or WELLNESS event?

Bolt’s “triple treble” feat was driven to make history! Mo Farah completed double-double after accidently tripped in his 10,000 meter finals. Sindhu fought valiantly to win India’s first silver medal in Badminton.
These folks are driven by competitive spirit and hunger to reach the top. They are in excellent physical and mental health. But that was just the means to reach the end.
Why do we play sports?
I think when we were kids, sports was all about FUN. Competition, challenge & engagement motivated us to run to playing fields everyday.
We were never told in school or by our parents to play sports for good health. By-product of playing active sports was increased fitness levels & mental health.
Professional sports person play for recognition, special treatment & for money. When we watch Olympians in action, their endurance, strength, flexibility and fitness levels awe us. But I don’t think any one of them consider wellness as their key objective while adopting sports.
This is the crux of “corporate employee wellness programs?”
It cannot be sold to employees as wellness or health programs. You cannot preach them in their adulthood “what to eat, how much to walk or when to sleep?”
When we started corporate employee wellness initiative in 2012, we positioned GetActive as a FUN & ENGAGEMENT initiative for employees. We designed competition, team events, individual challenges based on STEPS.
With HR team, we designed framework for recognition, motivation & rewards for participation and performance.
Outcome was mind-boggling. We consistently achieved 75%+ engagement. We were able to show tangible results on health parameters like weight-loss, energy levels and stress. We could help employees manage conditions like diabetes, migraine, acidity and joint pains. Cisco results is a case in point.
Like Olympic, we need to view corporate wellness in a different light. Outcome would be ACTIVE & ENERGIZED employees. But message & program should be aligned with the interest of employees.
At GetActive, we continue to focus in helping corporates to become ACTIVE. We do this with FUN. Outcome is happy & healthy workforce. We thus help build a lifelong habit of staying active & healthy.
Contribution: Mohammed Hussain Naseem – Founder & CEO

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 |
2mpower Health Management Services Private Ltd.