Suzy Singh in conversation with Dr. Annurag Batra, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, BW Businessworld and Kavi Bhandari

Emotional hygiene is very important – Suzy Singh. When our subconscious is clear of any disturbances then we can truly be happy. The essence of happiness is within us.

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Q. How have the last 70 days been for you Ms. Singh?

A. They have actually been very good because the way I approached these last several days was with a great degree of acceptance and surrender. I have always believed in surrender, and I like to place my attention on the silver lining to any dark cloud. So I have used this opportunity to upskill my talents, to invest a lot more energy in helping people who have been having troubles, and creating a lot more video content that can reach many more people, as I understand that a lot of people are going through a huge fear psychosis at this point in time with their lives. So the idea has been to help myself, help my family and help the community on the planet.

Q. Tell us a little bit about your book which was published 3 years back and please tell us a little about the kind of work you are doing for the benefit of the viewers.

A. To start with, the good news is that my book 7 Karma Codes, that was launched in India exactly 3 years ago, on the 6th of June, has just been launched in Italy. The Italian edition has been launched at a time when Italy is going through so much suffering and I feel it was God sent, because in a small way, that book can bring relief to the people who are suffering so much presently.

The kind of work that I am doing right now can be categorized into 3 kinds. The first is working with people who come on a particular issue to solve their problem, or want to solve a current challenge that they are experiencing in their lives. It could be physical or mental in nature, so I have a lot of people talking about depression, talking about their addictions having gone up during this lockdown period, talking about aches and pains, fibromyalgia, all of it seems to have become amplified. Perhaps they have more time to give it more attention, or perhaps it has become aggravated because they no longer can escape it with their normal escapes of running out and busying themselves with what they call ‘living life’.

Then there are people who are struggling with relationships. I think this is a really big one. Earlier husbands and wives could go to their respective workplaces or whatever else they were doing with their lives, and at least one partner was out of the house, so they weren’t in each other’s faces, and in each other’s lives so frequently. The fabric of relationships has come up for re-examination, and there is a fair degree of conflict that is coming up, which is why there is constant irritation and frustration. I think it is an opportunity for them to examine it and mend it.

Lovers are struggling with their complaints and wanting to break up, so that is happening a lot with the younger generation. There are in-law problems, and sometimes issues with the kids because in these times parents are suddenly watching their children a lot more closely and they want to navigate, control or direct their lives, trying to make them better or improve them, and the children are not enjoying that interference.

There are also many emotional distresses. People are a lot more fearful. They are getting caught in comparison traps and feeling jealous that ‘somebody’s business is doing better than mine and I’m wondering how my business is going to survive etc.’ So these are the people who are coming to me for solving their immediate crisis, so to say.

There is a second set of people who have been with me for a much longer period of time – who come to me for life coaching. They are addressing things in a more positive and constructive way, as they have been in touch with me for several years, solving their issues, with regards to career, their money matters, their family matters and this is an ongoing process for them.

The last category is what I like to call the mentee category or the mentor mentee relationships. People who are not just looking at, what is the problem in my life presently, and how can I improve the quality of my life, but they are also examining deeper questions about their soul. These questions relate to their larger purpose in life. Am I really, deeply content with what I am doing? Am I at a crossroad? How can I improve myself? How can I understand myself better? How can I contribute to society? How can I be more compassionate in my approach? How can I improve my social intelligence? These people are doing very deep work on themselves.

So these are the three broad categories of people I am working with, and thanks to technology, I have been able to help and work with people across the globe, right through the pandemic. And of course grief has also been a big issue, and a lot more people are booking sessions from all over the world, because either they have lost someone very close, or they fear losing their businesses, as some have collapsed completely.

Q. What are the top 3 things that have come out when people are seeking advice? What are the top 3 universal suggestions you give to them?

A. So if you are asking what commonly ails their soul, or what are their key issues in life, I think the first one is that deep down they all feel ‘not good enough’. So, ‘I am not enough’ is what is driving them into achieving more, accomplishing more, they need to keep proving to themselves, in every way, every day that they are enough, and they think that by doing something on the outside, they are going to be able to heal that ‘not enoughness’ inside them, but it doesn’t really work. So it is great that they put their energy into constructive things, because on the opposite side, there are people who let their ‘not enoughness’ lead them into addictions of all kinds. So yes, while it is a positive thing to drive your success or drive yourself to keep accomplishing things, these people are not happy on the inside. There is so much sadness and misery and lack of acceptance or self rejection on the inside, those are the issues I work with them on.

The important thing is to help them overcome the 3 errors that cause them so much pain, and those 3 errors are – firstly judgement. If there is a lot of self judgement, if your mental talk is all about judging yourself, calling yourself not good enough, or feeling you are not good enough, then that is actually going to be a great barrier to your inner success. You can climb Mount Everest and you still won’t be happy with yourself. You will tell yourself, the next accomplishment or the next deal I crack is going to make me really happy, but it doesn’t. Letting go of that judgement is important, judgement of self and judgement of others. When you look at life through the filter of judgement, you will not let go of the fact that you will be judging others too and thinking they are not good enough, driving them too hard. That interferes with your ability to be compassionate to them. So judgement is a big error. The minute you let go of it, you can deal with your ‘not enoughness’ better.

The second thing is complaining or blaming circumstances, or your situation. For example, Corona has happened so you tell yourself, I can’t do anything, I can’t fulfil my plans, I can’t do what I wanted to in 2020. This will just spiral you down into negativity. Instead you could say, I have a challenge, there is no guarantee that everyday is going to be a bed of roses, here is a challenge, what can I do about it? So getting out of this need to blame, to complain about everything, your circumstances, relationships, other things, and wanting to be in the ’victim mode’, you actually get into a state of action and say, I’m ready to take this on, i'm ready to put on my creative hat and find solutions. This is the second step of transformation, how we deal with challenges.

And there is the third error we must be careful of, which is constantly criticizing. Criticizing yourself or criticizing others. This gets you stuck in a quicksand. It sucks you in and puts you into a viral state of negativity. It consumes you completely. So you are not going to be in a ‘to do’ state at all. This state won’t help you at all. You also need to be mindful of your fears. Fear is really taking people’s mind over. On the face of it they pretend that all is good, but that is not their internal truth. It is somewhere like a stream, more like a background music in their minds. The fear of the pandemic is constantly defeating people, they are telling themselves – it's not possible,nothing good is possible. I urge people to be conscious, mindful about it, witness it and make every attempt to translate it into a ‘can do’ attitude.

Q. Small things irritate me. Why is that so?

A. The thing to examine is, why are you irritated. Are you irritated because you are a perfectionist? Or because you need to do more. Do you expect others to reach the kind of standard you have reached? The quantum of things you are able to do, others may not be able to. Are you seeing them through the mindset, ‘if I can do it, everyone can do it?’ Everyone is a unique individual with a certain amount of capacity to do, maybe they don’t have the capacity you have. You have been a serial entrepreneur, you have a very creative mind, you have a really good, go-getter attitude and nothing is enough for you. You are one of those people who leads by example. You need to re-scale those expectations.

Q. I want to remain calm all the time. How do I reach that level?

A. This is very important. What usually happens is that you have layers and layers of emotional distress that keep gathering inside you and you do not pay attention to them. Most humans have a tendency to ignore their emotional distress, so they don’t answer that call. What happens is that your emotional body keeps calling out for help, saying I’m hurt, there is too much pressure, there are things that are driving me to indulge in negative behavior. There is a typical loop where you get angry over something in an uncontrolled moment because there are other things worrying you, so that anger gets projected onto someone else, or it may just be misplaced anxiety. Later on, you feel worse, because there is judgement over what you did, and now you are angry with yourself. The only way to break that continuous loop is to take time to process your feelings. I have often spoken about emotional hygiene. Every night before you go to bed, you need to take time to evaluate your disturbing feelings. Just ask yourself, what disturbed me today? What is worrying me? Go through each one of those worrying experiences you encountered through the day, allow yourself to feel the physical sensations in your body that are arising. This will help you connect with that disturbing feeling. Sometimes a feeling of shame has been triggered in you, or some form of sadness, or grief, or anger is the trigger. Address it, feel it, let it pass, so that your body calms down and you are free from that trigger. If you do this, you will sleep well, having cleaned up your emotional distresses of the day. You have done your work, and when you go into the deep stages of REM sleep, your mind will then continue to clean out or clear out all of the emotional toxins of the day more effectively. Do this briefly, for a few seconds, even in the course of a normal day, when you feel triggered and you will feel more calm.

Q. You discovered your connection with the divine power when you were very young. And it continues to be the most important relationship in your life, I think. What would be your guidance to our audience in the context of finding, embracing and nurturing such a connection within?

A. In order to embrace a connection with the divine, it is very important that people should have this urge to discover more about life, or want to know the truth about life. If you are complacent and happy living a mechanical life, like you wake up in the morning, eat, drink, sleep, just live in survival mode, then it is never going to happen. We need to have that child-like natural curiosity to ask the simplest questions, like, why am I here? What is my life meant to be about? Is it about just growing up, studying, going to college, finding a job, getting married and having a family and then you just die? Is it just that, or is there more to life? Once you start cultivating natural curiosity to ask, to question, to interrogate, to not just take things lying down, not just accept blindly what is said to you, you will then be led to the next few steps.

And once you have started feeding that desire, that natural fire within, and burning bright to know more, the deeper questions, like your purpose in life, it will lead you to discovery of the natural laws, the laws of the Universe, how do things work? You will want to discover those. What are the laws of similarity? What is resonance? What is the law about above and below? The laws will then unravel and unfold, and we must actively want to pursue that experience, or that knowledge of certain things. So that is the second step.

Then there is the next obvious step which is wanting to discover more about my own self. What is my nature, my attitudes, my habits, what are my tendencies, where is the darkness inside me? How do I behave in ways that don’t serve my higher good? So self-discovery, self analysis, is the next step to progress. And then you arrive at something called faith. Faith that there is me, and there is something larger than me, and there is a connection between the two. It could be nature, could be just a greater force, could be what some people call God, but you know that there is something that is larger than me and that is a unifying element that brings all of us people together, binds us in itself. To discover that, you need to cultivate your faith. Once the desire to have a deep connection with whatever that larger force is, arises, at that point you will begin having a really honest, loving and deep relationship with that power or force.

Q. You have been releasing regular videos on your Suzy Singh YouTube channel on “Matters that matter”, so what are the most frequent matters that people seek to address these days?

A. Firstly there are a lot of relationship issues that people are reaching out to me with. The fabric of the family appears to be breaking down during this period because we have been thrown so close. It is like Big Boss happening in the house. There is no natural body rhythm. People sleep at 3 am and wake up at strange hours in the morning. They are in each other’s spaces, having to deal with each other a lot more frequently and obviously this creates a transparency of the things that were hidden before. The conflict areas are coming to the surface. And these conflict areas cannot be ignored. People blame the lockdown for this, but it is not the lockdown. These problems always existed, it was just that you never had the time or the attention to address them as you were busy with life, but now these marital conflicts are arising and becoming transparent.

Then there are people who are stuck in places away from each other so there could be people who are not in the same cities, the long distance thing is really bothering them because somehow they want physical intimacy, to be together, to talk to each other and so much more. They are connected digitally, but it doesn't substitute them being together. There is a lot of pain there and a feeling of ‘you are not here for me’, ‘I am struggling alone’, so these issues are coming up also.

Then there's trouble with the in-laws, trouble with the children, there are clients who are struggling with the fear of the virus and panic that even if they step out for a very important chore, and despite having taken all the important measures, they will come back with the infection. At the back of their heads, they are worried, what if I have caught it? Then they go on living with the fear, am I going to test positive for Corona? There is the fear of being sick. There is also the fear of the business failing, the fear of being laid off from jobs, so there have been people anxiously calling me saying what if my job is the next one to go? They feel lost, because they have no clue, so they panic, ask, should I call my boss? Should I try and figure it out? There is so much fear of losing jobs. Also of businesses failing, and the question, how am I going to fend for my family?

So all of these issues are leading to depression, hopelessness, apathy, increased addictions. I have had people telling me, ‘I get drunk more and smoke so much during this lockdown’. There are people saying, I have just been eating, and have put on a lot of weight, so body shaming is getting worse, as I can’t go to the gym and workout, and I am just becoming fat, and I don’t like the way my body looks. All of these issues are becoming magnified due to the lockdown.

And those who are willing to address these concerns are reaching out for help because they know that they can’t do this alone, and that it is okay to ask for help. It is okay to reach out. A lot of people feel that it is wrong to ask for help, and people will think I am inadequate if I ask for help. That is completely ridiculous. All of us, including me, need help at times, someone who can listen to us, hear us out, be a bouncing board where we can toss off ideas. So I think the message to all our viewers is – if you are dealing with any internal or emotional conflict, if you are dealing with relationship issues, if you are experiencing insomnia, if you are getting too angry and restless, please reach out and speak to someone, seek help.

Q. You are also a Master Clinical Hypnotherapist. For our viewers and some people who are ignorant about hypnotherapy, can you tell them what it really is. They think it is that same thing where someone calls you on stage and hypnotizes you. What would you like to say to our viewers who don’t know much about Clinical Hypnotherapy?

A. Hypnotherapy involves bringing your mind into a very relaxed state where you are able to access your own intelligence. You can then access information that you don’t know about in your conscious state, because it lies deeper in the subconscious. That information can be extremely powerful and valuable in solving some of the issues that you may be currently facing. Only 5 to 8% of that information is present in our conscious or cognitive awareness. The balance 90 to 95% lies in the area of our mind which we don’t know about and it can be accessed, it is valuable intelligence, your own intelligence, that can be accessed. Why would someone not want to access the power of their own intelligence, or their subconscious mind? It is simply because there are all these myths around hypnosis and hypnotism, it is seen to be an experience where people take control of other people’s minds and manipulate you to do the wrong things. I think that a lot of the media and movies are to blame for creating this misconception. And the word clinical hypnotherapy means clearly, that it is for clinical purposes. Anything that can help you find answers to the dilemmas of life should be encouraged.

Q. Amidst this pandemic everyone has their own uncertainty and challenges, like they are facing challenges, so what would you like to say to the people to calm them down, to maybe tell them that they don’t need to fear and have faith in the Universe and the Universe will in turn give them what they want, when they need it and how they need it?

A. I think we need to approach this current period by firstly reevaluating our finances. Take care of your investments, use this time to be very mindful about where your money is, how you use your money, how you spend your money, if there are any frivolous expenditures then it is important to cut back on those expenses, so even if you have couple of months without pay, because of lost jobs or lost business, you can survive easily. So just stay with that through this period so that you don’t have any real survival issues. Just like ants collect food in the summer for the winter and they store it away, we need to learn from the ants. Let us be careful about our resources, let us be wise, and I think that will take a lot of the anxiety away because people are confronted with survival issues at this point in time. So attending to your finances is the first step.

The second is, attend to your emotional state. You may be emotionally disturbed with your fears and your anxieties. Sit down and address them, don’t brush them under the carpet. Take

care of them, feel those discomforts, ask yourself what am I so worried about? Write them down. It is possible that a lot of our anxieties are resolved in the first step itself about finances. It is also important to release your body’s natural happy hormones. Activate your inner pharmacy. You need your serotonin highs, dopamine release, and focus your attention on things that give you joy. This is a time to nurture your talents, long forgotten ones. For example, I haven’t sung in 30 years. I've pulled out my harmonium and started doing my riyaaz, retraining my voice. We need to rediscover our passions. So whether it is writing, gardening, cooking, whatever makes you feel happy, redirect your energy, your emotional energy into upgrading your talents and skills. That is the second.

Then there is the third, mental health, is most important. Depression and fatal thoughts of dying must be dealt with. We are seeing the number of people getting affected by this virus and so, you should shut out any news that you find starts disturbing you. If there are recurrent negative thoughts, reach out for help. Communicate with people, talk to them. If you feel you are not able to do this, I would like to tell you about the 3 bodies here to help you reduce overthinking. We all have the physical body, the emotional body and the mental body. If you have an overactive mind, and you can’t stop thinking, or you don’t get sleep at night, the only way to counter balance overthinking is through movement. You can walk inside the house, do on the spot jogging, stretches and yoga, asanas, skipping etc. That is the only way an overactive mind can be brought into balance and the 3 bodies can return to a state of harmony. Harmony is very important for us. So balance an overactive mind by moving the body whenever the mind gets overactive.

The last thing of course is to use this time as an opportunity to do something new, to challenge yourself, and this can be very exciting if you take up a new course or a new skill. There are so many opportunities that we can actually empower ourselves with. We might as well leverage this time

Q. Do you feel that there is a higher purpose with this pandemic, like is there something the Universe is trying to communicate with us and maybe teach us?

A. I think there are a lot of ideas floating around about this but my personal opinion is that this is a collective approach to raise the consciousness of the planet, and what I really mean is that we have been so consumed by the obsession of materialism, the greed for more, we have lost touch with ourselves. There is a huge sense of disconnection. When we lose touch with ourselves, we lose touch with everything around us. We no longer feel that love for a fellow man, we don’t feel empathy towards our neighbors, our colleagues, we get caught in a rat race and we don’t mind tearing one country down if we can benefit from it. It is all about – I should survive, even at the cost of others. And this is the time that the pandemic has really brought us all together. We are not alone in anything. We are collectively sharing consciousness, and either we survive together, or we don’t survive. What that is telling us is that the present experience is trying to awaken us to the oneness of all things, which is also one of the Universal laws. It is trying to shake us out of this power hungry approach that countries, governments, even corporations and individuals have been obsessed with for so long now and bring us into this new awakened consciousness of – we are all in it together.

We must think of win-win solutions, we must think of solutions that work for everyone. I think it is actually a good thing, as it is a transformative period, and any transformation involves destruction, but you can’t have transformation without that. So I am hoping all of us will rise to this challenge, re-examine where we have been selfish, where we have been obsessed with the hunger for power and work on our social skills, our social intelligence, enhance our emotional intelligence and walk together, onto the other side of this pandemic, where we will feel a deeper connections with each other.

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