Every girl has that one piece of advice that sticks through good and bad times, and helps her get through baffling situations. We asked a bunch of Cosmo women to share their gems...
Tishani Doshi (Writer)
"The best advice ever given to me has to be a toss up between my late mentor, Chandralekha, and my mother. Chandra and I had wonderful conversations about politics, sexuality and love, but the thing she said to me that really stuck was 'Always walk alone'. She embodied that kind of freedom in her life, and I certainly aim to do the same. But I have my mother to thank for the pragmatic gem- 'Don't sell yourself short'. Seems simple enough, but I need to remind myself of this all the time."
Divya Gurwara (CEO, Bridal Asia)
"Sandeep, my husband, has always been the wiser one in our relationship, and his calm temperament has been a huge support for me. At one point, I was quite troubled and things were not going my way, he told me to let go. It taught me that peace is more important than perfection. I realised that if things are destined to happen they will, no point chasing them. Meditation helped me solve inner tussles and I truly learnt that you let go, you start seeing fewer problems."
Sanchita Ajjampur (Designer)
"My brother Raj is a man who has always believed in positive thinking. As opposed to the common perception that the absence of stress can make one happier, he told me otherwise. Stress has become an essential part of modern life. Living in a stress vacuum only means that the life one leads is totally unchallenging. Stress has to be managed and not accumulated. Most importantly, it must be expelled or it will become toxic. My mom, on the other hand, told me 'Do yoga'. I think that I have the luck that she changes my life every day by consistently giving me positive energy, which effects me in all ways: within and without, striving to find that vision, lucidity and balance."
Fatima Karan (TV personality)
"The best advice given to me was by my father many years ago, which has helped me go through life. He told me to stop making time for others and don't feel guilty about not doing enough, but to go ahead and also think about myself, my sanity and progress."
Monica Dogra (Actress)
"I was working as a waitress in a restaurant in New York, when I saw a homeless man walk in and say, 'Everyone wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die'. This got me thinking that we all want the best of everything, but we don't want to give up anything to get it. I realised acting was my calling, but that would mean giving up my home, moving to a new place, breaking old moulds, forging new ties. It taught me that you have to give up something to attain something meaningful and purposeful in life. And that's just what I did."
Anna Bredmeyer (Ex-model)
"Before you can own a garage, you have to learn how to sweep the floors. This was the advice given to me by my aunt Effie, and it taught me the biggest lesson of my life that don't get into anything with one eye closed. Do your research so that you are well-prepared."
Ambika Anand (TV Anchor)
"Someone told me that one should be satisfied, grateful and not be greedy because there is no end to materialistic needs. My friend and designer Rohit Bal had also mentioned that the harder you work, the luckier you get, and that's really worked in my favour. And on my various travels abroad, I met a lovely Italian girl who told me to chant Nam Myoho Renge Kyo, a very powerful Buddhist chant, which I do till today and it has helped me tackle difficult times."
Alpana Chauhan (Designer)
"My friend Shanker who advised and guided me to stop procrastinating and get up and take action on whatever I would like to achieve personally and professionally. I have not been the same since and my quality of life has gotten better since I became pro-active instead of reactive."
Bonny Hazuria (Photographer)
"I think my mom taught me the biggest lesson of my life, to treat people the way you want them to treat you. She was a wise woman who believed in the power of patience and resilience. When you put it in practise, it really works. I often feel that we just react and don't respond, and that makes us angry and complicates situations. Being aware and in control of your own actions and reactions has helped me stay calm and centred. It can be a bad work situation, a nasty colleague or just a day when everything goes wrong, if you know what you are doing, it will keep you going in the right direction."
Gauri Karan (Designer)
"My father has really shaped me and it's hard to say which of his many pieces of advice is life altering. However, if there's one that has defined who I am, it's my dad's eternal emphasis on love, how he made a conscious decision to surround his family with endless love and understanding. Truly, nothing makes us richer than that."
Anjum Chopra (Cricketer)
"It was a crucial match on the eve of India's first-ever series abroad in women's cricket and Fiona Fernandes, my manager, gave us a great pep talk. She told us to stick together and act like a team, not play for individual benefits. United we stand, divided we fall, is a mantra I live by."