Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Interview With Puneet Nanda, aka “GuruNanda”, author of “Happy Breath Yoga - Wall Street Yoga”
What inspired you to write your book? The book was inspired by my personal journey, one that took me from hard-charging, wound up entrepreneur to relaxed, contented accredited yoga instructor. Back in my days as founder and CEO of a successful oral care brand doing business across several time zones, and as an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year, some thought I was really living the dream. The truth is I was ruining my health, my sanity and my home life with 16-hour workdays filled with stress, poor eating habits and lack of exercise. I rediscovered the yoga I had loved as a child in India, and found that by incorporating simple breathing exercises, meditation and other Ayurvedic practices into my life, I could reclaim both health and happiness. If this book helps just one other person do the same, it will have done its job.
How did you come up with this unique approach? This approach has actually existed for thousands of years. It was just a matter of looking at how simple yoga, yogic breathing and meditation exercises can fit into – and enhance – busy contemporary lives. Anyone can find 14 minutes daily to do these routines and experience their profound impact.
What challenges did you over come to pen the book? Taking the staggering wealth of yoga and Ayurvedic teachings handed down over the millennia and making them accessible, relevant and effective for the modern consumer. By trial and error, I came up with something that worked for me (I lost 40 pounds and am almost off all my prescription medications), and that I knew could also help thousands of other “Wall Street” personalities.
Any advice for a struggling writer? Just like anyone else, I have occasional bouts of writer’s block. I find that getting up and taking a walk, or practicing “yogi coffee” (see p.73 of book) can re-focus me. But most importantly, I try to concentrate less on the perfect words and then just get some thoughts down on the page that I can refine and build upon later.
How is yoga helpful in relieving stress? My favorite question! Stress is an unhealthy state that gets activated in our bodies several times a day. It elevates the heart rate and blood pressure and compromises blood flow to organs like the stomach, intestines and kidneys. Yoga is to stress like water is to fire. Proper yogic breathing coaxes the heart rate and blood circulation back to normal. It also gets more oxygen to deprived cells, while pushing out toxins.
Does one need to work on Wall Street to make use of your book? Absolutely not. Anyone who is trying to get it all done in today’s demanding world is a “Wall Street” or Type A personality. Entrepreneurs, stay-at-home parents, college students, freelancers, actors or anyone in a competitive environment can benefit.
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