Before the Thrive Challenge, I was struggling to balance my professional and personal life. I recently got promoted to a fast-paced new role, and I found it difficult to manage my stress and stay in touch with my loved ones, like my parents in India. I struggled to find time to call them, and I was also overlooking myself and falling into bad habits, especially with my diet. I suffer from polycystic ovary syndrome, so eating well has always been a priority for me, but I needed some help getting back on track. 

The idea of the Thrive Challenge struck a chord right away. 

I saw LinkedIn posts about the Thrive Challenge, and also heard people at work talking about it. It felt so relevant to my current situation, so I decided to get started. My first step was allowing myself more family time. I decided to call my parents or grandparents every other day, and tell them everything that was going on with me. My parents are so happy that I am making time to connect with them on a regular basis. I also started inviting my brother over to make him traditional homemade Indian food.

I’ve been making little food swaps.

I’ll use olive oil instead of vegetable oil, and ghee instead of salted butter. My current favorite recipe is veggie quinoa, with cumin seeds, mustard seeds, curry leaves, chopped onions, tomatoes, green peppers and carrots. I add frozen peas, green beans and edamame. I stopped ordering food in, and instead started cooking nutritious meals at home. I try to avoid canned food, pop and sugary drinks, and any foods that contain refined sugar. I substituted my juices with coconut water! I even make my own yogurt and cheese at home.

To stay productive, I’ve been applying the “Big Rock” method. 

The idea is to choose your “big rocks,” the most important tasks you have to do, and then move onto your less important tasks. At home, my most important tasks are cooking good food, taking care of my skin, and calling home. I use the same method at work. 

I’m saving $200 from every paycheck. 

Using the Microstep of putting extra money into a savings account, I started my own TFSA (Tax Free Savings Account), and I add $100 to it from every paycheck, no matter what. I feel better financially just by being conscious of my spending and savings habits, thanks to the Thrive app.

The Thrive Challenge reminds me to practice gratitude every day.

I’m making sure I never miss a day to be grateful for a roof over my head, three meals a day, a loving family, friends, my body, and a great workplace to grow my career. Making time for gratitude gives me the ability to see the positive in difficult situations and remain calm. The Thrive Challenge has brought back the things I was missing due to the change in my lifestyle, like great food, family time, and gratitude. I’ve found the balance I need to prioritize what’s important.

— Ramandeep Kaur, Walmart Supercenter #1107, Waterdown, Ontario; $2K Winner

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