She Speaks: At the end of the day, Love is the fundamental truth – Anu Sethi, Volkswagen India

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Q: What did you want to be as a child?

A: I always wanted to make a difference in people’s life from an early stage of my life. My aspirations were more humanity oriented wherein I felt that ‘Yes’ it is possible to create transformations.

The most important influencing factor in my life was my parents. I saw them carrying out actions which created a difference in people’s life and I picked it up from them.

Q: What drives you to do what you do?

A: My philosophy has always been to go with Saraswati (wisdom), and Lakshmi (money) would eventually follow. My core strength is in self-reflection and that’s where I got my life purpose.

My purpose got more clarity & definition from ‘Vipassana’ and from the book “The Fifth Discipline” by Peter Senge.  The reason as to ‘why am I born on this planet?’ really brought me closer to myself. Everything started falling into the right place when I realized that this is what I really wanted to do.

Q: What is the best and worst decision you have made in this journey so far?

A: The best decision was to get married at the age of 18. Today I have a daughter who is 21 and a son who is 18 and I feel that I am young to take my life purpose to the world level, because everything is settled in life. I also believe that the way my philosophy & beliefs have been ingrained with the fundamentals of eastern and western culture, have prepared me to work towards my life purpose and that is what I have been seeking since 15 years.

The question of worst decision never occurred to me. I believe that every decision has a positive intention.

For e.g. whenever I did my personal studies I didn’t have much time for my family. At that moment I felt guilty, as I look back now, I see I have two beautiful independent children and a helping husband. And I am happy about this.

Q: How do you retain the essence of being a woman in a man’s world?

A: What has worked for me is to address the male ego, use a blend of facts & data and treat him with respect. This strategy allows me to bring an equal opinion to the decision making table.

Q: What is a deep rooted belief that you had to unlearn to create a way forward?

A: I had to learn that I am responsible for my feelings, emotions, decisions and behaviour. I choose to be the way I am and to be happy or sad – both is fine because one comes with the other.  At the end of the day love is the fundamental truth.

Q: What are the challenges you see for the generation of women behind you and what advice would like to give these women?

A: One of the challenges would be to have a balanced relationship with your partner while being an independent woman. I would like to say, as women, we need to be confident to take up challenges, balance work and family, don’t be too hard on our-self.

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