Free­ing her­self

HAN­ISHA VASWANI, 31 Se­nior man­ager for the dig­i­tal arm of a PR firm

Hindustan Times (Patna) - - THINK! THEBIGSTORY - — Bhairavi Jhaveri

Han­isha Vaswani has stopped us­ing her car to com­mute be­tween work and home and has cut down on air travel, opt­ing for trains even over long dis­tances. She shops for clothes only once a year. She does not own a cell­phone or com­puter, us­ing only ba­sic ver­sions of these gad­gets pro­vided by her of­fice. Hav­ing fine-tuned her pur­chases over the past year, Vaswani is now trim­ming her con­sump­tion fur­ther, buy­ing sec­ond-hand books or bor­row­ing from li­braries rather than or­der­ing books on­line. She only buys home fur­nish­ings once a year, usu­ally re­strict­ing her choices to locally made eco-friendly cane and straw items. WHY: Vaswani says that, by her late 20s, as the thrill of be­ing able to spend and buy be­gan to fade, she started to feel like she was los­ing touch with who she was and what was im­por­tant to her. “So, I de­cided to re­turn to a sim­pler, more mean­ing­ful life,” she says. “Most of the time you are just keep­ing up with oth­ers’ ex­pec­ta­tions. Af­ter a cer­tain age and des­ig­na­tion, peo­ple ex­pect you to drive a car, buy things and al­ways take the plane. I didn’t want to be mak­ing my de­ci­sions based on peer pres­sure.” THE IM­PACT: “I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off me,” she says. “I am free from al­ways car­ing about how I am per­ceived. It is lib­er­at­ing to think that you are be­ing judged purely on your thoughts, ideas and pro­fes­sion­al­ism.”

Vaswani now spends her com­mute read­ing on the metro, rather than swear­ing at the traf­fic while driv­ing. “I'm even find­ing more time to talk to my mother on the phone,” she says.

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