At BrilliantRead Media, we always strive to bring meaningful and powerful stories from India and around the world to empower and motivate our growing community. As part of this endeavour, we invited Amita Bhuwania for an exclusive interview with us. Amita is an Entrepreneur, Leader, Health Coach, Wellness Consultant and Change Enabler. She is an environment crusader & social green influencer and has been featured across media platforms for her remarkable contribution. A senior resident editor with the colony newsletter, and known as the “Green Goddess”, she has motivated more than 150 households to start home composting and growing organic vegetables in their urban spaces of homes. Let’s learn more about her incredible journey, her background, and her valuable advice for our growing community!
Excerpts from our exclusive interview with Amita:
We are aware of your contribution to the ecosystem, talk us through your background and your journey, please;
A Medical Tourism and Healthcare specialist by profession, with an educational background in Commerce and Finance, I also have a keen interest in Music, Indian arts and culture.
Growing up in a culturally enriched home led me to become a qualified Kathak dancer (Nritya Visharad). Born and brought up in the beautiful city of Chandigarh, gardening became a natural part of life.
Apart from being a National level skater, and being decorated with the President’s Girl Guides Badge, it gives me great joy when I am able to give back to society. Amongst many, an initiative close to my heart has been my contribution to the colony gardens.
Together we have actively planted more than 150 fruit trees and scores of air-purifying plants in public spaces while educating several people about seed-saving and growing techniques.
A Certified Holistic Health Coach with RachnaRestores helping people with lifestyle diseases and autoimmune disorders, I am a lifelong learner and believe in the philosophy of minimalism.
Living life slowly and at a natural pace is our mantra for staying happily together.”
Having lost my mother to cancer more than a decade ago motivated me to hone my skills, and educate and equip myself to help others in their healing journey, which led me to become a Certified Cancer Coach.
A firm believer in the prevention of disease and leading a healthy lifestyle, I also actively practice Yoga to keep myself fit. Cooking is a passion and vegetarianism is a way of life for me.
Could you share with us about your entrepreneurial journey so far?
Having dabbled with many things, I have had myriad experiences in my professional journey. I started my career with one of the best income tax lawyers in my hometown which has been one of the most enriching experiences.
However, that changed post-marriage when I shifted to Delhi and focused fully on having a good family life.
I firmly believe that living in the present and enjoying what one has is more important than worrying about the future – which led me to take a career break of about 12 years. Having two young children, I did not want to be a part of the corporate rat race and take up a regular job.
I ventured into setting up my own outlet from my home into designer bed linen. A couple of years later an opportunity came our way and both my husband and I ventured into the field of finance launching our own company.
It became difficult for me to divide my time between both ventures so I finally bid adieu to the first one. We made a great team together and put our heart and soul into it which led our company to phenomenal growth.
However, during my mother’s illness, there was a growing deep desire to be able to do something in the field of healthcare, but I had no clue how to go about it. As they say that some things are bound to happen for good – a godsend opportunity came. Soon I saw myself in charge as Director of Operations for a USA-based Medical tourism company.
It changed the course of my career. A few years later, we launched our own brand for Medical Tourism under our own company. An out-of-the-box business model, hard work, and vision for the future made our brand one of the leading Medical Tourism companies.
Covid undid all the hard work of a decade, but not the one to be fazed, I channelized my energy towards healing people through my knowledge and experience as a holistic health coach. Post the pandemic, I am now focused on rebuilding the Medical Tourism business albeit on a different model.
When did you start growing vegetables? What’s your advice to those who want to grow their own food in Delhi weather?
A journey which began ten years ago saw innumerable challenges. Used to gardening in the front and backyard of our Chandigarh home, I found growing vegetables in pots on the terrace a completely different ballgame.
The first year turned out to be a disaster. I started growing vegetables in the summer, wnaware that it is not the best season to start. Nevertheless, the winter season turned out well and pushed me to begin reading and learning about planting, caring and growing the right way.”
I realised that the Delhi Seasons were difficult for plants due to the extreme variations in temperature. Continuously experimenting and learning hands-on – I am now able to grow 30 varieties of vegetables and herbs successfully every season in my potted garden which has swelled to about 300 pots.
These include potatoes, garlic, turmeric, sweet potato, cherry tomatoes, and herbs – oregano, thyme, parsley, and celery to name a few. A few fruit trees like grapefruit, lemon, moringa and star fruit also adorn my green space. My biggest takeaway has been that almost anything can be grown in pots.
Why should people grow their own vegetables? How difficult is it?
Eat what you grow or grow what you eat should be everyone’s motto – especially if one has space available. The satisfaction of eating homegrown, seasonal food is unmatched.
The effort that goes into growing your own food even if it is very little, sensitises one towards reducing food wastage and effectively using almost all parts of the plant for e.g beetroot leaves, side leaves of broccoli (makes excellent saag, chips) which would otherwise be discarded.
It was my urge to eat pesticide-free, chemical-free and fresh food which led to this journey. Interestingly, for most people living in urban concrete spaces like Delhi, the yearning to grow their own food has been prompted by that voice from decades back, when they either had a kitchen garden or ornamental plants at home.
In your opinion what are the keys to success?
There are no shortcuts to success. The definition of success varies from person to person. For most people success is measured by monetary gains and attaining their financial goals.
For others, it could mean happiness derived from the kind of work one does, and for some, it may come from name and fame.
However, Success doesn’t come easy and there is no replacement for hard work, dedication, and focus. One should not lose sight of the purpose that one works for and should have a vision for the future.
What advice would you give to our readers?
Whatever you do – you should be passionate about it, belief in what you are doing, and above all have faith in yourself. Be disciplined, and consistent in what you do and work towards leading a meaningful life.
Simplicity and minimalism are virtues that keep one’s feet firmly planted on the ground. Materialism can never buy happiness although it does give momentary joy.
Self-nurturing and taking responsibility for your actions and your life is of utmost importance. Love yourself, look after yourself and be your first priority. Keep learning new things and acquiring new skills – they work as excellent stimulants. Be your best critic.
Last but not least, what about your journey makes it satisfying/exciting?
The sheer joy of having helped innumerable people around me, whether known friends and family or unknown strangers from far lands, has been the most satisfying part of my journey as a medical tourism consultant.
Bringing a smile to someone’s face, standing by them in their hour of need and helping them heal as a holistic health coach, feels immensely fulfilling.
Sharing experiences of my journey towards a zero waste lifestyle, sharing knowledge of gardening, respect for nature and the environment, and motivating others has been equally exciting and challenging.
After all, as a famous saying goes – The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others!!
BrilliantRead is committed to bringing stories from the startup ecosystem, stories that reshape our perspective, add value to our community and be a constant source of motivation not just for our community but also for the whole ecosystem of entrepreneurs and aspiring individuals.
Note: If you have a similar story to share with our audience and would like to be featured on our online magazine, then please write to us at [email protected], we will review your story and extend an invitation to feature if it is worth publishing.