You DON’T Have to TORTURE YOURSELF to Become Healthier - Aim for Small Changes w/ Monika Sharma

Mar 08, 2022

Welcome to episode 38 of the Mindful & Driven podcast! It’s all about how to not lose sight of what really matters whilst chasing your dreams.

Episode 38’s guest is Monika Sharma. She’s someone whom I have been friends with for over a decade now. She’s a full-time doctor but on the side, she is also a trainer and uses her fitness page Train with Doctor Mon to spread a positive message about how we can get fitter and healthier but without some of the negative connotations of the toxic beliefs about diet that other people might portray. She’s also looking to build a new interior design business as well. She does all of this at the same time. In this podcast, she shares how she manages to do that and keep herself fit and healthy.

I hope you enjoy listening to our conversation! I’d love it if you could subscribe, leave me a review and follow me on social channels. 

Topics discussed in this episode:

  • How to be healthy without depriving yourself.
  • How to lose weight without suffering from big limitations.
  • How to stick to your health goals in the long term.
  • How to become healthier starting today.
  • What you can do to stick to your health goals.
  • Why it’s important to prioritize the long term.


  • Introduction (0:00)
  • Prioritising your health (2:10)
  • Train with Doctor Mon (4:32)
  • Balance in her own personal journey (7:53)
  • When do you realise that it’s too late? (11:31)
  • Making it achievable and making a sustainable change (16:41)
  • A creature of habit (26:42)
  • A successful lifestyle (29:03)


Intro Music:
“Himalayas” by Mona Wonderlick —
Creative Commons — Attribution 3.0 Unported — CC BY 3.0
Free download:




[00:00:00] Monika: But it’s just not sustainable. And I think, the minute you start cutting out food groups restricting yourself to a point where it’s like, you said, not achievable, it’s not going to be sustainable and if you eat well the majority of the day, or, you know, you prioritize your movement, then I think one bar or one square of chocolate, isn’t gonna make you overweight overnight. It’s all about balance because the minute you start with shifting things, I think that’s when it becomes not sustainable and not achievable. 

[00:00:36] Amardeep: Welcome to the Mindful and Driven Podcast, where we help you to not lose sight of what’s really important whilst chasing your dreams. Today’s guest is Monika Sharma. She’s someone whom I have been friends with for over a decade now. She’s a full-time doctor but on the side, she is also a trainer and uses her fitness page Train with Doctor Mon to spread a positive message about how we can get fitter and healthier but without some of the negative connotations of the toxic beliefs about diet that other people might portray. She’s also looking to build a new interior design business as well. She does all of this at the same time. In this podcast, she shares how she manages to do that and keep herself fit and healthy.I hope you enjoy listening to our conversation. 

Welcome to my Mindful and Driven, Monica. It’s a pleasure to have you here. 

[00:01:14] Monika: Thank you so much for having me. I’m very excited to be here. 

[00:01:17] Amardeep: So you’re the guests I’ve known for the longest in this podcast. And you’re going to notice people listening that mean medical might start laughing sometimes because we’ve met for quite a long time. So, this is a very different environment to how we’ve normally met each other. I met her first at a mutual friend’s birthday party, I think when we were both somewhere around 18. 

[00:01:36] Monika: Yeah, I think so. If it is earlier though, I would like you to like, retract that and then put that back in, because I would like to be like the longest reigning person on this podcast that you’ve known. 

[00:01:47] Amardeep: Yeah. We’ll give you a special medal at the end. 

[00:01:50] Monika: Yeah. I want it. You know my address. So just send it in the post. 

[00:01:54] Amardeep: That sounded way creepier when you say it that way. 

[00:01:58] Monika: Oh god. You can retract that. 

[00:02:01] Amardeep: So, how I start with the podcast is what’s the common advice that you disagree that you often hear? 

[00:02:05] Monika: What is the common advice that I disagree with? I think probably that you don’t have enough time in your day to kind of fit or prioritize your health. I think a lot of people that I’ve seen in my profession have said, you know, like, oh, I don’t have enough time to do X, Y, and Z. And I think that’s a priority that probably needs to be put to the forefront. So I think it’s probably just focusing on your self more and prioritizing your self and your health more, both physical and mental. 

[00:02:41] Amardeep: And have you had times in the past where you haven’t done that yourself? 

[00:02:44] Monika: Absolutely. And I think you have to learn from those times. And I think probably one of the most recent times would probably be going through the COVID pandemic, working as a doctor in the COVID pandemic and realizing that a lot of things can get on top of you and your priorities tend to kind of slip off or slack in the background, so I think there’s definitely times where I’ve been there more than one occasion. But it’s important to have insight and then learn from that. 

[00:03:12] Amardeep: So what did you do when those situations came up when you weren’t prioritizing your health, did you make changes straight away or was there a trigger that made you do things differently? Because, so you obviously run a health page, right? 

[00:03:26] Monika: Yeah. 

[00:03:26] Amardeep: So you have to keep up the fitness and everything like that because it’s part of your brand and in some ways, your personality now, right? So was it ever hard to keep that because you just didn’t feel like doing it? 

[00:03:37] Monika: So I think once I have this Instagram account and one of the aims of that Instagram account is to kind of promote lifestyle changes and health and wellbeing, it also holds me accountable. And I think by me having to show up every day, it’s something that probably drove me to prioritize my wellbeing. And I think it’s not something that I necessarily kind of looked at and thought, oh yeah, I realized it overnight. It’s about reflecting and realizing if I am unhappy, why am I unhappy? Or what can be changed? So I think, It takes time when you reflect on it, but also having something that holds you accountable, like my page, we’re kind of the saving things. 

[00:04:21] Amardeep: What drove you to create the fitness page in the first place? Because obviously we [unintelligible] long time and I guess with both of us, we didn’t think that we’d be the kind of people to have a public persona and to be public images. So you went from being quite private to then creating this page and then trying to put the message out there. What was the reasoning behind that. 

[00:04:40] Monika: So I think I got into kind of fitness quite late. I got into it whilst I was kind of four, four years into uni and I actually got into tennis because I kind of used it as like some sort of mental therapy at the time. And then I loved it. I loved like the endorphin rush you got after it and I started practicing it, kind of in my daily routine, and then as I was talking to all my friends about it, they were like, wow, like you should really do personal training. And then I was like, actually, maybe I should. And the reason why I actually did the personal training was to kind of inform myself and educate myself on how I can better myself. And then out of that just came this page where I was trying to, kind of tell people about this rush that I was getting after and trying to kind of get them on the bandwagon to be like, look guys, I found something really great. And I think we should all be doing it. 

[00:05:36] Amardeep: Was the initial steps of creating the page itself and putting yourself out there, was that scary or was that something you just felt quite comfortable with? 

[00:05:44] Monika: I was petrified and actually to this day, like when I post I still get really nervous and I get really kind of scared about the reaction, but I think over time you realize that, although it’s like, you’re putting yourself out there, the people who follow you, follow you for a reason. But I think we were talking about it before, how having that kind of little bit of nervousness, to me I find is very useful because it shows that I still care. But then also on the flip side, I do have this kind of like imposter syndrome where I’m like, wow, like, why are X amount of people even bothered about what I’m doing on a day-to-day basis? So, yeah, I still get nervous to this day, but I think definitely posting the first couple of posts, I was like, oh my god, what am I doing? 

[00:06:36] Amardeep: And do you fee that nervousness and the stress you have with that is worth it? Because of the satisfaction you get, or is that kind of an ongoing struggle? 

[00:06:43] Monika: I think there’s good days and there’s bad days. I think that with social media and I’m sure, you know, as well, that it’s very easy to kind of get sucked into this kind of instant gratification and measuring success as the amount of views or likes or followers that you have, and I think it’s taken me a long time to realize that that is not how I am defining my success, so I’m actually defining my success now on Instagram, by if one person messages me and says, oh my God, you know, I tried this that you recommended and it’s great, or, oh, I went for a run this morning because I saw that you worked out, you know, that’s what I define it by rather than kind of the amount of likes, follows, or whatever else is out there. 

[00:07:36] Amardeep: With the personal training side itself, how has that been in terms of trying to balance that on top of being a full-time doctor and all the other stuff you do? 

[00:07:44] Monika: So at the moment, I haven’t, I don’t have any like personal training clients or whatever, but what I have found is that, 

[00:07:52] Amardeep: [unintelligible] 

[00:07:55] Monika: Yeah. Maybe. But I think it’s definitely helped me in my own kind of fitness journey in the sense that, I’ve been able to better my form, I’ve been able to see my progress and also kind of offer, you know, short, fun exercise videos online. You know, even if I’m not able to like a one-to-one, at least that’s some sort of capital that I can use to be like, actually it can be quite fun and some challenges that people can try. 

[00:08:21] Amardeep: So you’re making a shift at the moment now, right? Where you’re going to general practice and the equivalent for Americans is, do you know what that is? 

[00:08:29] Monika: I think it’s family medicine. 

[00:08:32] Amardeep: Okay. Yeah. So that means there’s going to have better hours and more control of your time, and it’s personal training you’re looking to do in that time, or what you’re planning to do now you’ve got a few more hours to yourself? 

[00:08:44] Monika: Firstly, with a few hours, extra hours that I have, obviously with medicine, like work and exams never stopped, so I have, you know, certain amount of that time dedicated to revision, et cetera. Also I have started a kind of business with one of my friends. We started a deco kind of company. So that’s definitely something that I want to pursue. And then I think with regards to the fitness aspect, I’m actually guided by the page. I think if, you know, it goes in that way, then it might be something that I would toy with the idea of maybe starting some sort of online forum where people can discuss that. But I think at the moment also, what I realized is that a lot of people have personal training qualifications, and I think there’s like varying expertise throughout, and I think, you know, having a personal training qualification now in the fitness industry is like baseline. So I think if there was something that I was going to do with regards to that, I definitely want to like, get more qualifications to make sure I’m like an expert in something rather than just promoting stuff that I don’t really think has good quality. 

[00:09:56] Amardeep: But at the same time I see you’ve got a medicine background, which most personal trainers don’t have. So how much did that help you? 

[00:10:03] Monika: So I think the kind of overlying things with, you know, being a personal trainer and working in GP would be that a lot of or some of the diseases, you know, normally our governing body recommends like lifestyle modifications. So I think promoting, in the context of the patients that I see would be one way of me trying to bring that, bring the two worlds together. 

[00:10:28] Amardeep: Hi everyone. I hope you’re enjoying the episode so far. I want to take a quick break to ask you to check in with yourself. There’s many people struggling with balance and it’s nothing to be ashamed about. It’s tips that my guests might share can hopefully help you along the way, but if you already feel overwhelmed or burnt out, it’s probably best that you ask somebody for help too. For some, this might be a friend or family member, while others might feel like they have nobody they can talk to. If you’re one of these people, check out the link in the show notes, it’s for United for Global Mental Health. They’ve got health plans all across the world, with people willing to listen on the other side. It’s important to let somebody know how you’re feeling. Now, back to the show. 

One of the things that I follow and I’ve taken a lot of advice from is [unintelligible] and he talks about his lifestyle choices a lot and how much prevention is better than cure. And how much of that is true in your experience as well as a doctor and as a fitness instructor as well. And do you think some [unintelligible] people maybe missing out on where they take too long to try to get help. So for example, with burnout, people wait until they’ve completely burnt out, then they try to seek help rather than preventing it in the first place. 

[00:11:32] Monika: That’s very fair and I think the issue is, is when do you realize that prevention is the answer before it’s too late, and that actually now you are seeking treatment for the disease or whatever you already have. And I think if you don’t know the warning signs to know that you could be, you know, either having burnout or type two diabetes or blood pressure, et cetera, then I think it’s very hard to know that prevention is kind of a management option. I think, me being a person from an Asian background, where there is high prevalence of, you know, loads of metabolic conditions like obesity, blood pressure issues, diabetic issues, cholesterol issues, I think also the other reason why I promote and prioritize my health and wellbeing is because I know that at some point, given my family history, I’m probably susceptible to many of these conditions, so in a way me working out is also preventative measure. But I see a lot of patients, you know, in my daily practice that unfortunately have gotten to the point now where they’re needing kind of medical management and then have complications of these diseases like cardiovascular disease, strokes, et cetera. So yeah, I, I mean, I follow [unintelligible] myself and the pillars of health, et cetera, and I think prevention is definitely the best, but it’s about raising awareness of that and knowing when the time is to prevent it before we actually get, get the issue itself. 

[00:13:06] Amardeep: Yeah and one kind of model I think about in my head sometimes is where you can imagine somebody who’s falling down a slope. So if we’re watching this on YouTube, you can see what I’m doing with my hands. If you’re listening, you’re going to have to imagine. So people are going down a slope and sometimes people will say that you have to get to the rock bottom, and then you can climb your way out. But I didn’t see any reason why when you’re sliding down, you can start to see you’re sliding down and to try and go up at any other point. So there’s, it’s not that you, you have to wait for a specific point I think, to change your life, you can do it today. You can be listening to this podcast right now. Tomorrow you can decide, I’m going to eat less sugar, or I’m going to work out a bit more. You don’t need to wait for an event. And I think sometimes people wait for an event, for example, new year’s resolutions. And then if it doesn’t work out in January, it’s okay, I’ll wait for the following year. But every single day is an opportunity where you can make a change that will make an impact in your life. 

[00:13:55] Monika: I couldn’t agree more and I think one of the kind of mottoes that I live by is like, the time to start is now. No, it’s not tomorrow. It wasn’t yesterday, cause that’s gone. It’s not next week and it’s not like Monday or the start of the next month. It’s now, if you’re thinking about it, just do it because you know, people often say like, oh, you know, new, new week, new me or new year new me, but actually, the way that you’re actually going to stick to the change that you make is by creating a habit and if you don’t start making the habit now, you’ll just waiting to create that habit, and you’re just delaying the progression further and further. So yeah, if anyone is listening, if you’re thinking about something. Just start it now. 

[00:14:42] Amardeep: You can start at a smaller scale right? You don’t have to make a big, huge change at one time. Like you can say, let’s say, you don’t do any exercise at all. Maybe you should start out by saying, I’m going to do five minutes of walking a day, and then once that becomes a habit, once you’re out for five minutes, you can probably carry on walking for a bit longer. And it’s easier once you’ve just got that first hurdle done. And I’ve seen people say, for example, where if you just make a habit, is that you put on your shoes, like when you finish work, because when you put on your shoes, you’re not going to take them off again. You’re probably going to try and go out or do something with them, right? Because you’ve already done that little bit of friction that’s not there anymore. 

[00:15:19] Monika: Yeah. If you’ve made the effort to squeeze your foot into that shoe, you will make the effort to take that foot and that shoe outside. And it’s, it’s the simple things like knowing also what your personality needs. So if it’s that you plan to, I don’t know, for example, go for a run in the morning at X time, and you know, that you’re getting out bed is a struggle, and that counting your time in the morning is a struggle. Why don’t you lay out your running clothes the night before, put your shoes there and hold yourself accountable for that. So it’s about knowing what works for you and knowing, yeah, these are the things I need to do to make sure that I am successful in what I have set out to do that time of that day. 

[00:16:07] Amardeep: I think it’s making it as much a part of making it achievable because for example, I used to tell myself self and I’m just going to quit sugar and I’ve never done it. I told myself that probably several hundred times the last few years, and I lost about a day or two each time. And instead, what I’m trying to do now is one where it worked well for me at one point is that I’m only going to eat sugar [unintelligible]. 

[00:16:32] Monika: Yeah. 

[00:16:33] Amardeep: Or like, that was kind of some of the words. It means like, it’s adapting the rules that it’s not necessarily making it completely teetotal or like it’s a completely banned something, but just changing a little bit. So another rule that I think is quite good for people who eat too much sugar is don’t buy multi-packs. So every time you want to have a chocolate, you need to buy that specific chocolate. That doesn’t always work for me because sometimes I still go to the shop just to buy chocolate, but it’s much different than just being in the flat or just being in your kitchen. You just want to make life a bit more inconvenient. And that’s one of the things I always think about is sometimes life can be too convenient and that’s a problem. If you make things a little bit more difficult, you increase the friction to some of these bad habits. 

[00:17:14] Monika: I think also it’s about making a sustainable change and that’s why I always say that cutting out like food groups, is probably never going to be the answer because it’s, in my opinion, I don’t think it’s sustainable. You know, I have been on a weird kind of fitness health journey for a very long time. And believe me, I have tried some weird stuff like, I have tried, 

[00:17:44] Amardeep: You’ve got to expand now on that. 

[00:17:46] Monika: Not like weird weird stuff, but you know, things like, I am going to have a cheat day and I look back now and I think to myself, wow, like how sad were you those six days of the week where I deprive myself of like chocolate, I deprive myself of crisps, I’d deprive myself of say everything, and I’m thinking to myself, yeah. I thought I had to eat clean for six days, and on the seventh day I would go crazy, one thing I tried. The second thing I tried intermittent fasting. Oh my god. Did not work for me. I was like, I can’t eat from this time to this time and I can only start eating at this time. I used to wait until one o’clock. When it was 12:59, I didn’t eat. When it’s 12:58, I didn’t eat. I had to wait until 1:00 and I would, I could hear my stomach grumbling. And I just realized over time when I look back that it’s just not sustainable, and I think, the minute you start cutting out food groups and restricting yourself to a point where it’s like you said, not achievable, it’s not going to be sustainable. And so, you’re right. Like if you know your personality, you know that if this day you’re going to eat it, yeah, you can make it a little bit harder for you to get access to. But I wouldn’t say that, you know, if you eat well, the majority of the day, or, you know, you prioritize your movement, then I think one bar or one square of chocolate, isn’t going to make you overweight overnight. You just reevaluate the next morning and you think, okay, cool. What should I do today? Maybe I should prioritize more complex things like an apple instead of a chocolate, you know, it’s all about balance because the minute you start with shifting things, I think that’s when it becomes not sustainable and not achievable. 

[00:19:36] Amardeep: Yeah. I think my problem has always been that if I have one that I have everything. I don’t have, I can’t self moderate, so I moderate by just having less or like, I don’t have it available because if I have one cookie I’ll have the entire packet. 

[00:19:50] Monika: But then I’m like, when people have these cravings and sometimes, you know, it’s like maybe towards the end of the day and they think, oh yeah, I fancy something, and then your cravings go loose, my first question is always like, are you fueling yourself enough during the day? Like, are you eating enough calories during the day? Because why do you then, so rather than, this time, and then you’re like, I could chomp on a whole packet of whatever. And then I’m like, well, actually, have you like satisfied yourself throughout the day? 

[00:20:23] Amardeep: But it’s also sometimes I think like if I had this before, where it’s not so that you’re even hungry, it’s the kind of almost therapeutic effect of it, right. 

[00:20:33] Monika: Oh my god. Yeah. 

[00:20:35] Amardeep: Because you enjoy the texture, whatever it is. 

[00:20:37] Monika: You had like an emotional relationship with food. Do you have like a really emotional relationship, like you know, you might eat some, like, I don’t know, particular chocolate that reminds you of this memory, or you eat certain foods and they remind you of memories. So, yeah, but I think, you know, food is there to be enjoyed, not just because of the taste, but because of like memories, because the way it makes you feel. So, yeah, I think it’s, it’s hard because it’s taken me a long time to get to where I am now with my relationship with food. But I think there’s a lot to learn. And I think also one answer is not going to fit everyone. I think it’s about what works for you. 

[00:21:14] Amardeep: And I think that’s true for many things, right? It’s about experimentation. I always say it’s like, if you’re in a place of your fit and healthy, then don’t experiment with your diet too much because you’ve already got something that’s going well for you, right? But if you like, you’re struggling, if you lack your energy and you’ve got the different symptoms, like you mentioned before, that’s when it’s good times, like, well, what diet does work for you or what, It’s not even a diet, right? It’s like, what’s the same thing that you can keep up that’s fueling you in the correct way and it alleviates some of your issues, but it’s not something like a detox that’s going to last a week or you do it for a month and then you go back to the old way. It’s how can you keep yourself fueled properly. And I think Expanding that a little bit, it’s about whenever you want to give up something, it’s often better to think about what can you replace it with? 

[00:22:01] Monika: Yeah. 

[00:22:02] Amardeep: So you’re thinking about like, okay, let’s say I use nuts for example, in terms of food. It was all about food today. I’m hungry as well now. But if nuts, I use nuts instead of chocolate sometimes because it gives me a kind of a similar kind of thing. And if I’m having a lot of nuts and I don’t tend to crave chocolate as much, and I think it should have lots of things where, let’s say, you’ve got issues in terms of addictions and other areas. So let’s say some people at the end of the week, they really need to, they feel like they need to like get really drunk and that’s the way they cope with their week. I was like, well, what other things, can you do that maybe a less damaging to you that could give you a similar kind of buzz? And it’s also, it’s like, it’s looking internally yourself, right? Is it damaging you or not? If it is damaging you, is there something else you can do instead? Which gives you the same effect and it doesn’t need to be alcohol. It’s whatever it is that’s, it could be something that’s very healthy to many people, but for you, you just take it that bit too far or whatever it is. And it’s looking at it in that way of, okay, like, let’s say you spend too long watching Netflix and you want to get from the sofa, what exercise can you find that you enjoy just as much, or even more than watching Netflix. And instead of thinking, I’m not going to watch Netflix, but I’m going to go and do that. That’s a more positive mindset I think. 

[00:23:24] Monika: And it also comes back to that habitual change, because if your, if your routine is every Friday night, I’m going to go out and have X amount of drinks, or I’m going to go out and well, I’m going to watch Netflix, you know, for X amount of hours, five days a week, et cetera, that becomes a habit, as a positive habit, It can also be a negative habit, you know, that first thing you do when you wake up in the morning, pick up your phone and go on Instagram. Like once that becomes a habit, it’s very hard to come out that. So it’s about recognizing that you’re in that loop, breaking the cycle, thinking, oh, you know what? I actually don’t want to do this. And then creating a new one, which is more positive. 

[00:24:05] Amardeep: Are there any habits you’re trying to build at the moment? 

[00:24:12] Monika: I think I have daily goals and in that I probably have habits but I probably don’t realize. So I am a creature of habit in the sense that, you know, the majority of days, my approach to breakfast is a smoothie or, you know, porridge or whatever. I have a set routine at three or four o’clock I have a cup of tea. Things that make me happy that are within my kind of daily routine, and I am a creature of habit every day, I like to move my body somehow. But with regards to new habits, I am trying to do some journaling, which is very, kind of very weird to me in the sense that, you know, writing down your reflections or your aspirations or whatever. So I think that’s probably one of them. At the moment I’ve just changed jobs, so I think my routine is a little bit in the kind of limbo sense, because what I’m normally used to and have been doing for the last six months, my start times have changed, my free time has changed, so I’m kind of creating ways in which I can still incorporate some of my old habits. That’s another thing actually I was going to say is that once you, once I am a creature of habit, it can be very difficult to adapt to change. So sometimes previously what I found is I have been quite rigid and not been very flexible. And so I think learning that, you know, there’s a set amount that you can’t control and you need to be a bit fluid about it. Like adapting to a new job is something that I used to, and probably still to a certain degree struggle with, 

[00:25:49] Amardeep: Because what I was going to ask you but you almost stole my question is that, when you work for the hospital, obviously you’re in rota, so you don’t have control of your time. So how does it work if you’re a creature of habit? Was that something that was quite difficult for you to deal with where your routine will be changing so often around the different rotas you had? 

[00:26:08] Monika: Short answer, yes. Long answer, yes. But I think at the beginning of when I started working as a doctor, I very quickly realized that a lot of the things that I thought I would be able to do in terms of like, outside of work, would take a lot more planning. So I think over time what I’ve realized is that, I prioritize what I want to do in a day and normally those priorities generally stay the same, so I mean, throughout the week, so, you know, I like to get at least thirty minutes of workout done, or, you know, I want to go to two classes a week or something. So I actually make time to plan those into my daily, kind of routines and it’s, although it’s a changing rota, it’s kind of a fixed rota in the sense that you know that you will have four night shifts at this point in time. I know that I would have two weeks of 12 hour shifts at this point in time, so so long as you forward plan, I think that kind of creature of habit inside of me was like, still Semi satisfied because I was able to plan that in. So I think so long as you prioritize what you want to do and you forward a plan, then that whatever is in your control will still remain in your control and then more whatever is not is, you know, that’s done. And the other thing is that I know that with work, you know, your finish time is not necessarily your finish time because you stay late because someone gets unwell or something happens, et cetera, so yeah, then I realized, what can I control? My morning time. Because I can get up earlier and do X, Y, and Z. So that’s, you know, I tend to work out in the morning because my start time at work, never changes, but my finish time can. 

[00:28:08] Amardeep: What would a successful lifestyle looked like to you in the future then? What would you want in the future? So you’re being a GP now. Is there going to be more control? What would that look like to you? 

[00:28:19] Monika: I think mentally, happy and healthy. Physically, happy and healthy. Being content in things that I am doing outside of work. So with regards to the Instagram, deco business, et cetera What else would I say? And I think just ensuring that I have goals and ambitions that I strive to achieve and pushing myself out of my comfort zone in order to do that. 

[00:28:47] Amardeep: So with the like fitness Instagram, and the decoration business, are you worried, they’re going to kind of clash where it’s gonna be hard to grow both of them at the same time on top of your job? And do you feel like you’re going to sacrifice one for the other eventually or how do you think it’s going to go? 

[00:29:05] Monika: I think, that thought has definitely crossed my mind. And I think people who run multiple Instagram accounts, kudos to you because it is really hard, but it’s about knowing my limitations. Also the kind of health page that I have, I feel like it’s just an extension of me in a sense that, what I post on there, I never really post things I don’t feel unnatural or that I believe in. So I feel like when I do do that, it’s kind of, I don’t really think about it that much. Whereas the other one, obviously a lot more thought goes into it because it’s something that I haven’t been doing before. You know, X amount of years that I haven’t been doing like this Instagram page. So there are times where I do think that, and I think if it does get overwhelming, you know, I’ve got a good support group around me and I’m lucky to be doing the deco business with one of my best friends, so it’s good in that way, but I’m just excited actually, just to see where they both go. 

[00:30:03] Amardeep: If you have to give, people that are listening today, one piece of advice that can make a positive difference in their lives, what do you think it would be? 

[00:30:08] Monika: Go back to saying the time to start is now. That would be my one piece of advice. So if there’s anything that you’re thinking of doing, I would just do it now. Not like right this second, but relatively soon. 

[00:30:19] Amardeep: Listen til the end of the podcast, the go ahead and do it. 

[00:30:22] Monika: Yeah, yeah, yeah. 

[00:30:23] Amardeep: So speaking of that, it’s been a pleasure to talk to you again, Monika. Where can people hear more about you and what you’re up to? 

[00:30:28] Monika: So I’m mostly on my Instagram page, so my handle is Train with Doctor Mon. But yeah, it’s been lovely to talk to you. Thank you so much. I’ve had a great time. 

[00:30:38] Amardeep: And the final thing is, what’s one small thing that’s brought you joy recently? 

[00:30:42] Monika: Don’t laugh but it’s an almond croissant. I have a thing. Okay. Yeah, I have to explain it. So basically I have a thing for almond croissants. I’ve like, tried to find the perfect one. And if any of your listeners out there have any recommendations and please feel free to hit me up, but I’ve basically tried each week to find an almond croissant and taste it from a different place. So at the moment I’ve tried kind of like no independent cafes, franchises and the one that’s on top of my list at the moment, is like a solid 9 out of 10, but I’m waiting for that 10 out of 10. 

If you’re listening on Apple Podcasts, I’d love it If you could leave me a five star review, it really helps get the message out further. Wherever you’re listening, it would be awesome If you could subscribe and share in your social media channels. If you want to see more of my work and advice, you can find all of the links in the show notes. 


Thank you again for listening and I hope you have a lovely day.

Amar's Letter

Real talk on driving impact as an imperfect human.