Fundas for a stress free exec lifestyle


 By Papri Das

In today's fast-paced world filled with increasing demands and responsibilities, it's important to manage your stress level. Some people cope with stress by overeating or eating unhealthy food, smoking, drinking and other activities that raise the risk for high blood pressure, thereby becoming counter productive. On the other hand, there are many who prefer a quick weekend getaway or lounging back to read their favourite book.

Understanding the gravity of the situation,'s Exec Life caught up with several executives to find out how they manage stress, keep high blood pressure at bay, and unwind their otherwise knotted lives.

"Television is as stressful as any other profession really," declared Reliance Broadcast Network CEO Tarun Katial in an earlier interview with Exec Lifestyle when we asked him for his formula for staying stress free. "And what keeps me going through the day is that I take a very detached attitude towards life in general."

He further reveals, "I did a course in Vipassana, an ancient form of meditation a few years ago which sort of transformed my life in very many ways. Now, I not only practice it everyday but recommend it to many people within the television industry."

Inner peace isn’t the only thing executives vie for; after all a healthy mind resides within a healthy body. Thus Madison World executive director Lara Balsara prefers the ancient art of yoga to keep both her mind and body fit. “It started with me attending a Iyengar yoga class in the colony I lived in before marriage. I found myself feeling good every time I practiced and so I started attending more regularly,” says the young executive, confessing that she hasn’t been as regular as she used to be. “It helps you become flexible and improves your strength, apart from  keeping your blood pressure in check.”

Contrary to popular belief, relaxation is not just about meditating or doing something peaceful. Former HBO managing director Monica Tata believes in living life on the edge. A self-acclaimed adrenalin junkie, Tata’s idea of relaxation is to go on roller coaster rides.

“Bungee jumping, roller coaster rides, river rafting and paragliding are some of the things I like doing. I do ride a bike. My friends and I love going for motorcycle rides from Manali to Ladakh,” she says.

While quenching her adrenalin rush does it for Tata, Insync channel CEO Ratish Tagde harbours a passion for music. He is also an acclaimed violinist and claims music to be everything in his life. He says, “It is music that is driving me, be it setting up the channel or any other work. If and when I get time, I am with my violin. Apart from that, I spend time with my family.”

On an average day Leo Burnett India CCO Rajdeepak Das manages his stress levels with his caffeine fix. “I hang around a lot at coffee shops. It not only caters to my love for coffee, I also get to talk to  a number of strangers and that lifts up my mood,” says the ad man. But there are days when even coffee can’t salvage him. “On my worst days, when nothing else works I turn to my wife. A good hearty talk with her calms me down and I quickly get over my stress and blues.”

Film critic and author Anupama Chopra loves to spend time with her children when she is not writing or reviewing films. Apart from that, she is also a self-confessed foodie. “I love food and I love to eat. I love to go out and try different kinds of food though I am a vegetarian. I love Thai and Japanese food, as well as some Indian food,” she says.

Like Chopra, Sideways co-founder Abhijit Avasthi believes that kids are the best stress busters. “They can be annoying as hell, no doubt about that, but they can de-stress you in 10 seconds,” jokes Avasthi, who is a doting father of two boys. While he asserts that nothing matches the time he spends with his boys, Avasthi also enjoys going on walks amidst greenery to unwind and relax.

Motorsport, spoiling oneself in a luxurious spa with a herbal massage, having a drink with close buddies or spending quality time with kids and family and of course yoga --  methods of de-stressing are countless. What matters is being aware of your increasing stress and blood pressure levels with routine check ups, and countering them with a healthy lifestyle.

On that note, Exec Life wishes you a  stress free weekend!

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