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Amazing and powerful journey

33 years ago, I landed at JFK International Airport on Dec 30th, 1988 to attend Graduate School at University of Wisconsin.

At the stroke of midnight on 31 Dec 1988, with wind chill hovering around minus 30-50 F, I stepped foot on the grounds of the university campus, that was to be my home for the coming year.

Foreign Student Success Story
Amazing and powerful journey

My mentor and professor Dr. Harold Beals came to pick me up.

He gently asked where would I be staying?

Upon hearing my response, he informed me that was not going to happen.

Here I was freezing to death almost or at least that is how I felt.

My brand-new Bata leather dress shoe and the best winter jacket, we could afford in India, was no match for the Wisconsin winter.

All I could think at this point was let us go somewhere warm and then we can figure out everything…that was the start of a new adventure in my life in the USA where at every stop and turn, it has demanded refocus, rewiring, reframing, re-energizing, and never giving up.

This is also the story of millions of immigrants.

Long story short, in the last 33 years after going through three graduate schools in WI, ID, and NC for nine years, living for months mostly drinking water or eating leftover food at university campuses when no one was watching, yet went running almost every day to clear my head and stay focused, holding all kinds of jobs such as retail store clerk, cashier, dishwasher, cook, server, packer, travel agent, retail store manager, teaching and research assistant, being told that I was not a good fit given the color of my eyes and hair, being told what could I do, or being taken to the police station to be intimidated by some powerful folks in the university town, my resume not shared with prospective companies interested in hiring interns, being told folks are not interested in hiring international students, losing a year because the university was not familiar with a type of student loan for an international student, being denied promotions or raise in spite of the results, and on and on…

"Set your life on fire. Seek those who fan your flames".- Rumi

Here is what I have learned and value….

Your personal values, culture, and character will triumph anything and I mean anything in the world.

No power can stop you from your mission except your own mind. Age is not a factor!

Don't be a box checker!

Have an element of faith in yourself and your abilities, things do work out if you take action.

Have patient and keep the focus on the target.

Most people are reasonable, helpful, honest, decent, kind, and want to see you succeed.

Never stop mental conditioning on a daily basis.

Never stop taking care of your mental, physical, and spiritual health.

The world is full of real and present inequality and discrimination but do not let that define you.

Seek out people who will truly understand, listen, and partner with you as equals.

Have high standards in life and look for similar people to surround yourself with.

Don’t be afraid to stand out, you do not need to fit in at the expense of your values and culture.

Help as many people as you can without expecting anything in return.

Build truly loving and meaningful relationships with people that are not transactional.

Be kind, gentle, honest, humble, considerate, happy, and resourceful.

Live and let live.

Live vs collect, as we all will leave this earth as we came, Naked.

Do not take "No" for a "No", do your own research and find solutions.

No is an easy man's way to doing nothing.

Communicate and not escalate.

The title is not leadership. Lead yourself first before leading others.

Try to keep an open mind and adopt unlimited identities.

Seek diverse experiences.

Cooperation and coordination over the competition.

Multitasking is a waste of time...focus one thing at a time.


As a result of the above, I have experienced the following so far and feel truly wealthy:

Traveled, lived, studied, and worked globally: North and South America, Europe, Africa, India, and the USA.

Worked with people from over 80 countries.

Lived as a roommate with people from five countries.

Ran seven full marathons (Atlanta, NYC, Paris, Chicago) and thanked thousands by the roadside who shared in the experience.

Undertook Pilates instructor training.

Cooked meal with the executive chef at a five-star hotel kitchen.

Studied Plant-Based Nutrition.

Public speaking at school, work, and Medical colleges on the topics of nutrition, fitness, and health.

Held all kinds of jobs.

Met Nobel prize winners and astronauts.

Spent considerable time with some of the most brilliant minds in the field of Nutrition.

Directly hired or helped hire over 400 people and mentored about 150.

Own my home and take care of my immediate and extended family.

Delivered about 60 projects of all kinds.

Led teams of >800 people while managing five countries.

Attended all of @Tony Robbins workshops, got to meet him in person and learn from him. Met amazing people from around the world who are my friends now.

Have a lot of friends globally that I can count on.

AND I am not done…

I want to keep childlike curiosity until my time is up to learn, grow, and contribute to this planet.

Wishing everyone an amazing 2023 and beyond and encouraging you to keep faith in yourself, help others, and enjoy the ride as long as it lasts….

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