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How To Master The Art Of ‘Taking It Easy’

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Just “take it easy”. It’s a phrase that many people use, but only a few understand the true essence of it. There was a time in my life where doing what I love to do the most proved to be a burden for me. That’s when I learned a valuable lesson; even your passion can prove to be a burden if it’s overdone. I started working for hours and this resulted in me losing track of time, becoming unhealthy, and gaining a considerable amount of weight. Of course, none of these things is good for you and you must learn how to ‘take it easy’.

While struggling with these issues, I understood that I needed to do something to make my life better. It was all bearable until one day I just felt like giving up. It was a very hard time for me as I never thought that following my dreams with such dedication would harm me. Well, it did and I just wanted to change some things in my life. I knew it wouldn’t be an easy journey, but I did it.

I created a proper routine for myself and made a habit of doing things other than work as well. I created time for myself to have a little bit of fun and it worked out. Instead of just paying attention to my work, I managed to take out some time to take care of my mental and physical health. I did this because your body is the only thing that will stay with you for the rest of your life and nothing or no one can replace or change this.

Paying attention to yourself is very important in order to learn and master the art of ‘taking it easy’. The only person that can help you in this is you, yourself. Just remember the things that make you feel happy and take out time from your busy life to do those things. Make time for your hobbies and if you don’t have any, develop some, such as watching TV, playing video games, swimming, and so on. Just make sure you have time to rejuvenate and get back to work with a fresh and open mind.

Here are some things that helped me to learn and master the art of ‘taking it easy’:

Keep Your Priorities Clear

Work is not the only important thing in life. Your friends and family, basically your social life is a very important part of your life. Don’t ever keep work or anything else in this world above that. I think having an interesting and happening social life is the key to living with a positive mindset. I still remember how I used to keep work above everything else and trust me, it’s not healthy at all. Just make sure that your social life and the people that you care about are on the top of your priority list.

Learn How To Forgive Yourself

If you are reading this, then it means that you already have a busy and stressful life. Getting stressed is a very harmful thing for both your mental and physical health and if you keep feeling guilty about the mistakes you’ve made, you’ll end up being even more stressed. So, before going any further, you must learn how to realise and reflect on your mistakes. Then, you must forgive yourself before seeking forgiveness from others or even God.

Acceptance Is The Key

The way you are is perfect. Sure, improvement is important, however, overworking is not the way to make yourself better at something. In most cases (including mine), overworking harms your overall performance as you don’t give yourself the time to recover, take rest, and have fun. One of the most major aspects of living with a positive mindset is realising and accepting the person you are. Never doubt your capabilities and you’ll be able to live the life that you want to. Nothing and nobody can stop you from achieving anything in life.

Take Breaks

Trust me, your work will still be there for you after your break. Just give yourself the time to recover by going on a vacation or something. Don’t stress yourself with a huge amount of work. It’s always better going ahead one step at a time. The most important thing in your life is your health. So, you must take good care of yourself in order to live with a positive attitude.

Spend Money On Yourself

We all have dreams of something we want to buy since our childhood. Throughout our school and college lives, we kept dreaming of many things that we wanted to buy when we got older and had money of our own. And when we are actually making enough, we end up saving that money thinking that we’ll spend it on something better. I think doing this is wrong because it makes you feel like you’re not living according to your needs and finally, it results in stress.

Again, taking too much stress is BAD for your mental and physical health. So, whatever it is that you want to buy with your money, just go ahead and buy it if you have enough money for it. Do not wait for anything. Do what you love to do and live the life you’ve always wanted to live.

It’s your life. Nobody apart from you can stop you from doing anything. You must always remember that. And yeah, take it easy; life is too short to spend it stressed out.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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