In our series, ‘Periods and I’, we talk with women who are leaving a mark in everything they do, and to discuss how they manage and embrace their periods as a part of their lives. What do they do? Is there a special routine? Or is it just like every other day? Let’s find out!
We had an exciting conversation with Deepali Chhatwani, who is a personal branding expert. She shared some of her tips and tricks to effectively manage periods and we picked out the best ones for you!
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and what do you do?
I’m Deepali Chhatwani, also called DeeCee after my Instagram handle. I started 7-8 years ago as a journalist posting stories about celebrities and influential people, which quickly grabbed attention. I didn’t focus much on content creation at the time as I had just started my agency. It was around 2014-15 that I started as a personal branding agency in Gujarat, which was not very popular back then. But with my journalistic curiosity and personal luck, I was able to grow from three clients to 23 today.
2. Hustling seems to be second nature to you; that’s great! Does this ever lead you to forget things about your daily life, especially your period? Is there anything you do to prepare beforehand?
Funny thing, my PMS is very evident to me and those around me because I start to pick the smallest fights with everybody. I try my best to avoid any negative feelings my period induces and focus on being happy because that gets easily absorbed by those around me as well. PMS also leads me to have really bad nightmares so I chant more than usual before my periods. I pick up either psychological or spiritual books that focus on inevitability – some things, whether you like it or not, will happen, and that’s just the way it is. This keeps me from feeling helpless. Most importantly, I avoid working out and over exerting my body. I just take my period as a sign and chill for a week. This doesn’t mean I sit around all day though; I do walk a lot, either when I’m taking calls or after meals.
3. Given your busy schedule and lifestyle, have you ever felt a lack of sanitary facilities?
One thing I’ve struggled with is disposal of pads. I’m someone who tries to wait till I’m back home if I need to use the washroom. However, there was one incident when I was on a road trip and I knew I needed to change my pad. Being a perfectionist, I didn’t want to throw it as is; I like to wrap a used pad tightly before I dispose of it. Moreover, the highway is filled with animals who tend to tear or eat things and I wanted to avoid that from happening at all costs. So I was left with no other option than to hold on to the used pad till I reached my destination, simply because there was no place for me to throw it.
4. That’s very apt that you bring up disposal. As more people begin to normalize the conversation around periods, I’m sure the talk of disposal will follow suit. Do you think people around you talk about periods enough?
I feel like we’ve come a long way. People are talking about it, and sometimes it doesn’t feel like it’s enough but atleast the conversation has started. My husband has honestly been great because he talks to people on my behalf when I start to PMS. He’ll let them know that I’m not in the best of moods and has no qualms about saying “period” to his family or mine. He is very understanding and doesn’t test my waters too much. So yes, it is a lot better today and hopefully five years down the line, when things are normalized more, I’ll remember us having this conversation.
5. Is there any advice you’d like to give young women who aspire to be like you or about your menstrual journey so far?
Don’t hype it up: don’t scare people from giving you work but at the same time, don’t take too much on. Be patient and keep hustling. A lot of people think Instagram is a shortcut to success – no. True, there is an audience for everything but everyone likes a good audience and for that, you need to work hard. Just make sure you love what you do and wait patiently for the results. Yes, there will be failures along the way but believe in your dream and never stop hustling.
As Deepali very rightly puts it, don’t hype it up; your period is a normal part of who you are. Be patient and mindful and allow yourself to be InSync with your mind and body.