Distinguished Speaker Session - Ms. B K Shivani

Hyderabad, 2nd July, 2021: Institute of Management Technology, Hyderabad, organized the sixth session of the Management Orientation Program "ABHYUDAY" on 2nd July 2021. The event commemorated the decennial celebration of IMT Hyderabad. It featured distinguished speaker Brahma Kumari Shivani Verma, Raj Yog Meditation teacher, and a spiritual guide & mentor with the topic being "Mental Well Being in the Times of Crisis."

The event began with Professor Dhananjay Singh presenting the welcome address where he spoke about the tenure of IMT Hyderabad as an institute by saying, "It was today ten years back that IMT Hyderabad started its journey in the quest for academic excellence." He further stated the mission of the institute is to provide holistic training to management students before introducing the guest of honour and eminent speaker, Sister Shivani Verma. Amongst her accolades, Sister Shivani was named goodwill ambassador of the World Psychiatric Association in 2017 and has authored publications like "Turning problems into blessings," "Say NO to overthinking," and "How to calm down quickly."

The speaker began by talking about emotional intelligence and attribute's benefit for management students to enter into the world of leadership and mentorship. She emphasized the growing importance of emotional intelligence to achieve improved mental health by rhetorically asking, "Covid cannot enter houses through closed doors, so why was there stress and anxiety to a level that it can be a cause for a mental health issue." She exemplified that the cornerstone for optimal mental health was emotional self-dependence by talking about how emotions need to be unaffected by changes in the external environment. She also mentioned that one should always acknowledge and take responsibility for their moods and emotions. The state of an individual taking responsibility for their own emotions was likened to "Atmanirbharta," or self-reliance, which could pave the way for an individual to manage and achieve the desired mental well-being levels.

To further explore the need to improve mental well-being, Sister Shivani spoke about how mental health was a fundamental leadership quality that enabled a leader to remain calm and stable in a crisis, to take responsibility, and empower everyone else involved. The speaker exemplified the means to achieve requisite mental well-being by enlightening about some essential healthy lifestyle habits by saying, "Sleep hygiene is an essential part of health, mental and physical." The speaker elaborated by mentioning mental health practices like a principle

known as "Sankalp Se Siddhi." The ethos of the principle is that "thoughts manifest," and hence the positive thinking would aid in striking a mental balance if practiced before sleeping. In addition to healing sleep cycles, the speaker talked about choosing an "emotional diet" for mental well-being. This choice involved consuming "pure content," which has compassion, acceptance, purity, gratitude, self-respect, and cooperation in the last ten minutes before sleeping for maximizing the replenishment process.

The session followed a brief question-and-answer session where the speaker was inquired by students and faculty alike on the various topics covered throughout the session on maintaining a healthy lifestyle for mental and emotional well-being. The event concluded with the vote of thanks proposed by Prof. Dhananjay Singh. He highlighted the "power of affirmation" and the "power of visualization," juxtaposing it with data visualization tools used in business analytics, and thanked Sister Shivani for gracing the event with her words of wisdom and insights.

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