Women balance multiple roles

New Delhi: Kathak maestro Shovana Narayan, jewellery designer Alpana Gujral and corporate leader Shalini Nayar may be from diverse fields, but there is a common thread running through the lives of these women - the art of balancing multiple roles. A woman dons the role of a daughter, wife, mother and an understanding human being. Those who have a career also strive to manage their professional lives with perfection. For Narayan, managing a long-distance relationship with her Austrian diplomat husband and two professions - that of an Indian civil servant and of a dancer - was indeed a tough task. "It was first a challenge to break through people's mindsets that one can manage two professional careers. When I got married, since my husband is an Austrian diplomat, he was posted in different parts of the world. It was but natural for everyone to expect that I should be following him around," remembers Narayan, who has been awarded Padma Shri for dance. "Problems are just people's mindsets, but in case you and your spouse and the family are convinced and firm about what you are doing, then everything falls into place," she added. According to Gujral, who is the daughter of well known artist Satish Gujral, a woman should never lose her identity while playing various roles. "I have learnt to define the role rather than having it define me. Even though you are giving so much of yourself to each role - never lose yourself in it," Gujral told IANS. If you are in a corporate world, juggling meetings, deadlines and personal commitments is no child's play. Nayar, who is marketing head of fashion brand Giovani, admits that it takes a lot of effort and energy but one can deal with it by being disciplined and punctual. "It is very important to be disciplined and punctual and very planned. I especially keep Sundays for my family where we do dinners with my children and husband or small picnics," says Nayar. "It takes a lot of energy to balance two different fronts. One gets limited time with children, hence time management is very important. Also, segregation of responsibilities between parents does helps." Agrees tarot card reader Poonam Sethi: "Don't run too fast to avoid falling. Take a breather - think and contemplate what needs to be done to devote equal time to everything. Try to meditate to maintain the mind and body balance...and believe me, it works!" Narayan feels women have to be honest, truthful and dedicated and at the same time convinced about how they want to shape their lives. "Each one of us, in our own way, is managing several fronts. I believe in case you are passionate about something, you can achieve it. Hence, professional life is something the person wants to do and personal life is so intrinsic that it is natural to each one of us, for it is the base - from where we are, what we are," says Narayan. "Relationships require a lot of trust, faith, friendship and respect and if these are there then marriage and family relationships bloom," she added.