Friday, 14 May 2021 07:45 GMT

UAE- All About You: Let the dialogue begin

(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Whether it is economic empowerment or evolved representation in the media, the last few decades have been a defining period in the trajectory of women's emancipation. Both locally and globally, we've seen several accomplished women leaving a mark, albeit through greater financial independence, agency, or autonomy in decision-making roles. And a central factor in mapping out this progressive shift is the emergence of suitable platforms that allow women to come together and express themselves wholeheartedly, without any setbacks and fear of judgement. All About You is one such platform that lends itself to shaping meaningful discourse, gathering ambitious and successful women of varied backgrounds, under one roof, to brew a path-breaking narrative.

The second edition of the All About You series, presented by wknd. magazine and The PosH Studio , took place at the newly launched Just Vegan in Jumeirah, on April 8, and brought together a house full of empowered voices, to share their journey of self-love, in the age of airbrush, social media and fad diets. The afternoon kickstarted with a soothing sound-healing session by Chikky Sirish, an empowerment coach, and comprised an array of panel discussions, ranging from topics like impact of social media on mental health, bringing entrepreneurial ventures to life, busting the myths of influencer culture and holistic approach to food and nutrition and celebrating womanhood.

The panel discussion on beauty and wellness was led by Vimi Joshi , a global celebrity makeup artist and TedX speaker, and Arwa Beig , founder of Arwa's Beauty Beliefs, a creative endeavour that spotlights the notion of enhancing what's on the inside to elevate how we look on the outside. The young entrepreneur strongly believes in defying the boxed notions of beauty. 'I'm not the perfect body shape, I don't have perfect skin or hair, but I've learned to accept my flaws and love myself for who I am, rather than going after what I'm not. I don't want to look like someone else just because that's what our society demands, said the 20-year-old. 'You don't see curvy girls or women with acne, for instance, on glossy magazine covers. They always have to be slim and airbrushed to perfection. And I want us to get out of that box. People always say ‘think out of the box', but why not get out of that box completely? added Arwa.

Some circumstances, such as meeting competing demands and juggling several priorities all at once, continue to hold more relevance in a woman's life. The second panel discussion, comprising Dr Sana Sajan , director of American Aesthetics Clinic, and Dounia Fadi , chief operating officer of Berkshire Hathaway Real Estate, shed light upon the necessity of holding onto one's aspirations when the going gets tough. 'Make sure whatever opportunity comes your way, you capitalise on that. Even if it classifies you as an opportunist, which usually has a negative connotation. I think making the most of an opportunity is a great thing, it simply means that you're not afraid to go after your dreams, said Dr Sajan. The COO also highlighted the need to stay unapologetically driven once women set their mind to something. 'Circumstances might change but it is vital to stay committed, not letting the changing situations shift our focus away from the goal.

With social media outreach expanding every day, one can't shy away from acknowledging the impact that the duality of our virtual lives has had on mental health. Beauty and lifestyle influencers Aishwarya Ajit and Rhea Jacobs came together to talk about striking a balance between showcasing a sizeable part of their lives on social media and retaining emotional wellbeing. 'It's important to be transparent on social media, otherwise, you can go down the rabbit hole of an identity crisis. It's important to tell people what goes on behind the scenes — that we aren't born like this and we most definitely do not wake up like this, added Aishwarya, who juggles between being an Instagram blogger and TV presenter.

The afternoon concluded with an insightful discussion on holistic approach to nutrition. The panel was led by Ayesha Shaukat , a holistic nutritionist and wellness educator and Seher Shaikh , owner of The Purple Chef . 'For me, self-love is synonymous with food. It's all about putting good vibrations into the food you make, so that when other people have your food, they feel that love. And that's exactly what was reflected in the ambience.


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