Meet Sonal Chhibber
Author, Writer, Poetess, Editor, Motivational Speaker, Trainer, Educator, Management Professional, Lifestyle Blogger, Model and Authorpreneur, Sonal Chhibber writes about women empowerment, parenting, expat life, self-care, beauty, wellness, fashion, relationship, mindfulness, spirituality, and travel. She likes to share her thoughts and experiences to help people. She especially seeks to inspire and empower all women. Sonal believes women are the cornerstone of family and society at large.
Sonal is inspired by the colour of the ocean, the waves and the sky. She loves reading books, meeting friends and playing indoor sports. Her favorite song is Reflection by Christina Aguilera because of the message about being yourself and celebrating your accomplishments, and her fave movie of all time is The Secret, with its powerful message about creating your own luck.
Ever Wondered What Makes A Superwoman Tick?
One of the best things to come out of the difficulty of the pandemic is the incredible opportunity we have to connect with people online from all walks of life and from all parts of the world! The online community is a thriving hub of connection and enterprise, especially since the pandemic. Sonal Chibbber, author, expat, and all-round Superwoman is someone I have admired for years and have had the good fortune of crossing paths in our vibrant Instagram writing community. It is inspiring to see the extraordinary unfolding of Sonal's career. She is someone that simply never stops and never gives up. Her sheer determination to make her dreams a reality is epic. This is what inspires me most about her.
Of the many bad things about the pandemic has been the impact on travel across the world. But the good news is that Sonal's new book comes to the rescue! This book is perfect for anyone planning a trip, but it is also brilliant for anyone like myself who would love to travel but can't. I get to travel through Sonal's words and her fantastic evocation of amazing places that she has been to. It's the essential companion to your travel plans and the perfect companion to armchair travel if you are unable to for whatever reason.
I caught up with Sonal–over the internet, of course, to find out more about her new book and what makes this Superwoman tick!
When did you decide writing was something you wanted to pursue?
Writing comes to me naturally, and I love to write as it's my passion. I used to love reading books and writing poems and articles when I was in school, and I used to feel good when my entries were published in school magazines. Then in college, English and Political Science were my favorite subjects. I used to be Chief Editor of my college (St. Xavier’s, Mumbai). I was responsible for bringing out a Political Science journal named 'Politique'. Initially, I used to write about Politics but gradually started writing about life and women, as I feel women are the backbone of the family and society at large. Today, as an acclaimed Writer & Influencer, I write on various topics such as Expat Life, Motherhood, Parenting, Kids, Travel, Books, Fashion, Celebrities, Lifestyle, Wellness, Spirituality, etc. I like to share my thoughts and experiences to uplift & motivate people.
How did you go about making this dream a reality?
I am an Indian expat living in Dubai for the past 15 yrs with my family. Educationally, I have a degree in Business Management and Teaching and had a successful career in the corporate & educational sector before taking a career break to balance out my family life. While l loved being at home & spending quality time with my family, a side of me was still looking to venture out. That is when I decided to pursue my passion for writing. After winning a writing contest by Khaleej Times, my inputs started getting featured in reputed newspapers, magazines, websites, books, radio, TV and blog portals in UAE, India, UK, USA, South Africa and worldwide. This got me much needed appreciation, acknowledgement, and respect. So, with encouragement from my family, I decided to follow my dreams and #BustAMyth that women who have taken a career break are less ambitious or committed to their work. I enjoy writing, communicating, and connecting with people, and I love to pen my thoughts. This is why I started my personal blog as an Influencer, to share my inputs & experiences, unleashing my passion for becoming an author.
Also, as an Editor-in-chief, Content Writer & Journalist for a popular fashion magazine in Dubai interviewed many famous Celebrities globally. Today, I am an Award-winning Writer, Author, Journalist, Life Coach, Travel Blogger, Wellness Influencer, Motivational Speaker, Writing Coach, and Authorpreneur. I believe in the mantra: "Never give up on your dreams. It's difficult to wait, but it is more difficult to regret."
What is your favorite thing about writing? What is your least favorite thing?
I love to write because it allows my mind to go to any place with no restrictions. Writing, I've found, is a way to express myself in ways I may not otherwise be comfortable doing. I enjoy writing because I love being able to express myself and my own ideas. I enjoy writing because it has so much freedom. But writing has its own set of challenges. Getting good publishers and regularly paid assignments is a bit of a challenge, but nevertheless, if one continues to work hard & produce good content, then in due course of time, one will get good work, recognition & accolades.
Do you have a writing routine or strategy you follow?
The pandemic has adversely affected our lives in many ways; still, I try to stay positive, active & do my best. A staunch believer of the 'women empowering women' principle, I make it a point to post blogs on my social media channels to support and empower moms all over the globe. I try to follow certain pointers daily to ensure I have an effective Writing schedule and strategy. Firstly, I keep my books and research materials close at hand in my writing space. I try to work in this space at the same time every day to stay inspired and fresh. Also, I start each day by journaling. I set a word count goal, like 500 words a day. Moreover, I have set aside writing time every day, without exception. I try and time my writing sessions. I decide on what I would like to write. It can be a scene, a chapter of my novel, or simply a page of free writing that helps me stimulate an idea. I try and stay physically active as I feel movement can stimulate fresh ideas. I also give lessons to aspiring writers & poets. The idea is to give back to society, to uplift and motivate people in these difficult times by giving them a platform to showcase their talent and share their stories to inspire others.
Where do you find inspiration?
I think it's essential to find inspiration from your own life and spiritual experiences. Having been an avid traveler, I observe places, people, surroundings, real-life incidents, deep conversations and divine connections with nature, which inform my opinions and thoughts. This helps me create meaningful and relevant content such as inspirational poems, motivational articles, empowering videos, travel and wellness blogs, books, etc. I've learned that 'people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.' So, the idea is to be inspired and be inspiring.
What inspired you to write your new book? What did you like the most about writing it?
"Write your own story, speak your own truth, live your own dream." My new book, Sonal's Travel Notebook, was a result of my love for travel & exploring new places. The hunger to explore the world and experience freedom was buried deep within me. It has always been the dream, the dream of travelling, that expression, the liberation that comes with it. The opportunity to be a Travel Blogger and visit many unique places has helped me fulfil my dreams and encourage my followers to explore the world. My new book, Sonal's Travel Notebook...13 Countries in 13 Years, reinforces the thought that 'We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.' I'm designing the exact life I've ever dreamt of. I have travelled to 13 countries so far and long to travel even more. I love to inspire and help people travel to different places and create special memories of a lifetime! For this year, my goals are higher than ever. More travel, more experiences, more achievements and more accolades. I believe, 'The journey, not the arrival, matters.'
Can you tell us more about your new book?
"Sonal's Travel Notebook" reinforces the thought that 'We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.' Travelling has been a lifelong dream; the idea of seeing the world, seeing other cultures, meeting new people, and expressing myself was something that excited me. Travelled to 13 countries so far, & long to travel even more. Pursuing my life goal to inspire and help people travel to exotic places and create special memories! So, friends, no matter who you are & what role you play in life, my book will inspire you, make you think differently and help you stir change where it's needed. My books are available on Kindle & Amazon.in. Feel free to check out all my books and give me a review and feedback.
Can you tell us more about your other books?
I'm an author of three books and a Co-Author of various Anthologies. I feel proud & grateful to be recognized as an acclaimed writer. As an Editor in my college, I was responsible for bringing out a political science journal called 'Politique', which contains my articles and poems regarding Politics! I believe there are some fundamental questions in an individual's life which need to be addressed at the right time. My first book, Living Life On My Own Terms contains timeless and contemporary poems which are vital to our personal search for meaning and purpose, focusing on questions specific to our inner life and quality of existence. I love the idea, "Be a light unto Yourself". And, "I don't go by the rule book. I lead from the heart, not the head." My second book, Secrets of Life Hacking, is a combination of articles written by me on love, life and other stories. This book is not only packed with tons of helpful advice for living an authentic, stress-free, and magical life, the articles are dreamy and beautiful.
Can you tell us more about being an expatriate? What do you love? What is difficult?
Living the expatriate life can be as exciting as it is challenging. It is challenging to start a new life abroad, but it is not impossible, and it is something many people have done before us. The key to a successful experience abroad is to be as prepared and planned as possible. Being open-minded and willing to learn and see new people, traditions, customs, and cultures is vital. We should allow ourselves to fully live in your new location and take advantage of the new experiences and challenges that come with it. Today, I am an Award-winning Writer, Author, Journalist, Life Coach, Travel Blogger, Wellness influencer, and Authorpreneur in a foreign land known as Dubai, which I now call my home. I'm an Indian expat living in Dubai for the past 15 years with my family, and I love it as all my dreams got fulfilled here.
I love how you advocate for women's empowerment and pursuing their dreams and ambitions. Can you expand on this?
I have been a staunch believer in the 'women empowering women' principle. I started my blog to support and empower women all over the world through my writings, motivational videos and life experiences, as I believe women are the cornerstone of family and society at large. Being a mom of 3 kids and living abroad, it's not easy to manage blogging and family simultaneously. Still, I try to create a balance between my professional and personal life by "working smart" and adhering to a schedule. Plus, I get full support from my family, who understands my dreams and helps me raise the bar and be a role model for other women. My positive attitude and never giving up spirit make me victorious against all odds and balance everything effectively! I believe in the saying, "Never give up on your dreams. It's difficult to wait, but it is more difficult to regret."
Soon, I look forward to exploring some more by myself, trying new things, learning more, writing inspirational books, motivating people with my videos and doing more creative and out-of-the-box work which provides full justice to my talent and potential. The idea is to 'be inspired and be inspiring!" Writing, Teaching, and Wellness are the areas I'm passionate about. I have always loved standing for the right things, no matter what. It's challenging but achievable! I believe in being yourself and living life the way you want and achieving success on your terms. I believe in the mantra: "Living life on your own terms," which means the ability to live a life that is meaningful and fulfilling to you. It means having the time, freedom, and flexibility to pursue the things that matter most to you, whether travel, volunteering, fitness, or any other hobbies or interests. It also means enjoying quality time with your family while also having a purpose-filled career that provides financial freedom. Living life on your own terms is about having purpose and fulfilment in your life and having freedom and flexibility to do what matters most to you. You can make this happen by starting today and taking action! It's essential to do this because how you feel about your life and work affects you and everyone around you.
I'm honored to be the winner of SHE Best Writer/Poetess Award, Most Inspirational Woman Award, Best Influencer, Social media blogger and Model Award, and Best Speaker Award, UAE. Also, I got nominated for the prestigious World Influencers and Bloggers Awards & Filmfare Changemaker of the year, Travel Blogger & Wellness Icon Awards, UAE. A staunch believer of the "women empowering women" principle, through my blogs and social media, I strive to support and empower moms all over the world! My articles and blogs have been published in various digital publications in the UK, USA, South Africa, India, and the Middle East. As an influencer, I have worked with multiple leading brands in the Lifestyle & Fitness segment. My motto is to empower and support women globally. Writing, Blogging, Healing & Coaching are my passions. My dream is to leave a meaningful legacy behind. I believe one should contribute to society much more than one takes from it. I want to motivate & encourage women and help those who need to find themselves and pursue their passion in life. That's my mission in life now!
What is one of the biggest life lessons you have learnt since becoming a writer?
Writing teaches you about yourself. It allows you to delve into the depths of your own mind, picking at and testing out emotions that you wouldn't have otherwise known you had before you sat down to write. So writing has made me evolve as a person, and I have learnt the virtues of patience, dedication, perseverance & discipline. The biggest life lesson learnt is never to give up; keep trying, and success will be yours one day!
What is some advice you would give to aspiring writers and also to other women who are looking to pursue their dreams?
Just be original and write about what you are passionate about. "Never give up on your dreams. It's difficult to wait, but it is more difficult to regret." Keep on exploring & experimenting, and one day you will achieve success. My success mantra is: "Define success on your own terms, achieve it by your own rules, and build a life you're proud to live." Do something new every day, conquer your fears and learn new forms of writing and expressing yourself. Be flexible and innovative. Keep learning & keep growing. Be a student and have a can-do attitude.