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Successful women who have secured their careers and families are now looking to add a little spice to their lives by choosing hobbies they put on the back burner in their youth.

Post-pandemic, the realization that life is unpredictable is commonplace. So these women enthusiastically embrace what was once a leisure activity with the same zeal as their profession and love it.

Dr. Ekta Chadha is a cosmetic dental surgeon who has a busy practice in his clinic. These days, she is also busy pursuing her passion for bridge.

“Now that I can manage my practice and my house without going from crisis to crisis, I have to challenge myself again,” Chadha told DH. “I’ve always played bridge as a hobby; Now I want to take it up a notch. Bridge is a mind game recognized by the Olympic Games and the Asian Games. I want to play at an international and competitive level and represent my country. »

At the end of her forties, Chadha wants to be on top of the game; she even participated in the Bridge Federation of India’s training for top players. She plans to play in the Summer Nationals in Bangalore the first week of July. Apart from her work, Chadha dedicates at least five hours a day to the game. She is also determined to do her best to play in the next Asian Games in 2026.

Ninjit Taneja, 53, is the director of two travel agencies. She became interested in bird watching almost two decades ago when she noticed the different species of birds perched on the balcony of her home in New Friends Colony, New Delhi. The interest took off like a passion.

“Birds invaded my life and became an extra dimension in my life. I started studying their anatomy and habitat and started painting and photographing them. Now I teach children to watch birds and organize workshops and exhibitions of my work.

Taneja is linked to a nature society in Nasik and uses her photography and videography on social media to raise awareness about birds.

“I work from home and am fully into my passion for birds, and my morning starts with the beautiful chirps of the birds that come to my house,” Taneja said.

Painting with watercolors, writing her bird journal, and working on bird workshops keep this birder and travel professional fully energized and healthy. Taneja added that she has hardly taken any sick leave since she started indulging her love of birds. She said: “Doing something I love for myself, a passion followed despite work and caring for family, brings me great joy.”

Sudesh Chawla, a longtime public relations professional in her 60s, has a stressful profession.

“With deadlines and late nights, I missed my workouts. I realized I wanted to do something that would keep me fit and lift my spirits. I signed up for Zumba. I was the oldest person there and very embarrassed. But I persisted because I found it fun and liberating,” Chawla told DH. “Little by little, I went from being a non-dancer to being a dance enthusiast. and a co-owner of the studio. I give my 100% to my dance studio and my media company. While the cash income from the dance studio is zero, my happiness income is 100%!

(The author is a lifestyle, celebrity and travel writer who has worked as a senior executive in major publishing houses)