Profile Story of Shilpa Sewak
MBA, PhD, Entrepreneur, Wedding Planner
When Team Laja asked Shilpa to tell us about what life has been like for her so far, she had a remarkable story to share with us. A story filled with challenges, failures, determination, self –belief and loads of experience.
Shilpa gave up her education midway to fulfill her parents’ desire to have her married off in her early twenties. Unfortunately for her, the union did not last too long as she and her former husband separated after five years of being married. Shilpa found herself as a single parent and the sole care giver to her then three years old son.
Life had thrown a new challenge in her path and she was prepared to overcome all obstacles to matter what the price was. She feels greatly indebted to her parents and her brother who were always there to support and encourage her.
Shilpa has never been one to conform to norms. She enjoys testing her limits and capabilities. This is quite evident from her multiple changes in careers and also in her desire to try out new things. She has tried her hands at modeling, biking and even gone on solo trips.
It has been a struggle right from the word go but Shilpa has been fearless. After her separation, she decided to take back the reins of her life into her own hands. She not only picked up her education from where she had left it at the time of her marriage, but also went on to earn her PhD. Her son became her driving force and her focus. He inspired her like none other. She was his hero and he was hers. Together they continued to march forward.
Shilpa comes from an educated family but circumstances made her leave hers midway. The greatest challenge that she probably faced at the onset of her career was that she was about a decade behind her other friends and collages. Where others were already well established in their chosen fields, Shilpa was just starting out. She had a lot of catching up to do. To add to this, she was also solely responsible for raising her son. Her responsibilities and difficulties differed greatly from others who were working alongside her.
Her third greatest challenge was the fact that she changed her career path not once but thrice. Each time she made a switch, she had to start all over again. She moved from being a clinical dietician, to an MBA professor and then finally to being a business woman. This is why she gladly calls herself a homemaker turned entrepreneur. She has tried her hands at several things before now finally settling down.
In her initial years, Shilpa often struggled with feelings of inadequacy. She also constantly harbored feeling of loneliness and isolation. But over the years, with hard work and experience, she has realized that self-love comes first and that she is enough for herself. She no longer seeks approval from outside.
She doesn’t consider any of her setbacks as failures. She looks at them as experiences that taught her something new. It helped make her what she is today- strong, independent and passionate about life.
Her entire journey so far has been one filled with hurdles that she claims to have proudly and bravely overcome. She derives great strength by looking back at her initial years. If she managed to then accomplish that which seemed impossible, today she is ready to take on any obstacle that life may throw in her path. She doesn’t like to ponder over past mistakes. She has taken them in her stride and prefers to keep the past in the past.
Her typical day comprises a perfect balance between her motherhood and her work life. She doesn’t consider either to be more important than the other. They are anequal part of her life and she like to believe that she is doing equal justice to both. She also ensures that in spite of the crazy schedule, she does allocate some exclusive ‘me’ time. A time she likes to spend with herself thinking, relaxing, reflecting and not really doing anything.
Shilpa is constantly on the lookout for new ideas and her creative wheels are constantly turning. According to her, everything around her is a source of inspiration. One needs to keep their eyes open at all times as you never know when a new idea may strike you.
Shilpa feels that formal education is very critical if one wants to achieve any amount of success in their professional life. It also assists in molding your personality in your later years. She defines her success as her ability to be able to maintain a balance between her work, dreams and aspirations on one side and her responsibilities as a mother on the other side.
She has learned three very valuable lessons in her journey which she would like to share with other aspiring women entrepreneurs. Any knowledge or talent that you may have, will only increase when it is shared with others. When you contribute towards the success of others, yours will automatically follow. She feels that it is never worth compromising on your ethics, beliefs and values in order to make more money. Believe in yourself. Sure life is tough, but always remember that you are tougher.
On that positive and motivating note, Team Laja salutes Shilpa’s fighting spirit and we hope that she can ignite the same fire in the hearts of hundreds of others who may cross paths with her.
|Greatest inspiration in life.||My grandfather|
|Book\s that inspire you or you love.||How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie?The Mink Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin SharmaWho Moved my Cheese by Dr. Spencer Johnson|
|What do you love about yourself?||An attitude that never allows me to give up. Not afraid of change. My multifaceted personality My strong sense of values Ability to easily switch roles.|
|What motivates you?||The desire to give my son the very best that life has to offer and to make my parents proud of me.|
|Favourite quote you live by.||“No decision is right or wrong in itself. It is in your hands to make the decision right or wrong as your attitude and action will determine which direction they lead you in. you can either cry and prove your decision wrong or you can move forward in the right direction and prove your decision to be the right one.” Advice shared by Shilpa’s brother.|
|What do you dislike about yourself?||Procrastination I am in a constant dilemma and hence often take long to arrive at a decision. Sarcastic which may sometimes come across as rude. Excessively empathetic. Trust people too easily.|