Interview: Arouba Kabir, Mental Health Counselor, A wellness Coach and Founder of Enso Wellness

Arouba Kabir

Interview with Arouba Kabir, Mental Health Counselor, A wellness Coach and Founder of Enso Wellness

Arouba Kabir, Mental Health Counselor, A wellness Coach, and Founder, Enso Wellness, is a distinguished expert in the field of mental wellness.

Based out of Bangalore India, this 35 year old has been proactively creating awareness about mental well being, it’s importance and significance. 

With an experience of 10 plus years in the field, Arouba has made a huge difference in creating awareness about emotional and mental health and ending the taboo and stigma associated with it through her many online series with like “Stand upto Stigma” or “lets talk about Mental health” or “7 Days 7 Women” where she featured renowned artists, Celebrities, humanitarians from various walks of life, like Sid Mallya, Actor Samir Soni, Singer Zeb Bangash, Bhutanese singer Misty Terrace, and many more spread across the globe and offline “Workshops and Talks in Colleges and Companies” with the simple aim of creating awareness regarding Mental Health derangements and helping people Identify and pay due importance to them.

Arouba has been awarded many times for her efforts by various organisations and was recently nominated By Hindustan times for Mental health Advocacy in India.

She has been one among the holistic professionals in this field who doesn’t believe in labelling people and works with them on their pains, traumas and behaviours rather than boxing.

Can you tell us a little about your background and how you became interested in mental health counseling and wellness coaching?

Arouba Kabir: My journey began in a small village of South Kashmir, where my family decided to migrate to jammu in the early ’90s due to the terrorism in Kashmir.

I was 4/5 years old and myy father was a politician and my mother, was a homemaker.  For years before migrating, my parents stood face to face with death.

Trauma was woven into the fabric of my family’s history, which reflected in my growing years and still does at times.

I was unwell most of the times while growing up with constant respiratory and digestive issues but I was a studious child and liked by everyone.

It was only in my late teens, during my college days where I was studying Psychology and Journalism and I started feeling sicker, and after seeing many doctors, I was diagnosed with a genetic progressive medical condition called Cystic Fibrosis, A rare diseases.

At the age of 21, I was told that my life expectancy is around 27 years, which was a scary time, and I hit rock bottom.

I was diagnosed with health anxiety and depression, suicide ideations, abandonment issues and was on many medications, was not allowed to step out of my home for six months.

That’s when my journey began. I started visiting various professionals in the mental health and spiritual field to get better, and that’s where the magic happened.

This journey went on for 4 to 5 years and when I was in my mid-20s, I felt much better, in charge of my emotions and life, and could decide that I wanted to have a profession of my own.

I decided to become a mental and emotional health professional not because I thought I want to change the world, but to be honest, I had realised and accepted that if I had to cope with my illness and live a normal life-I need to feel better emotionally and mentally and Had I chosen any other profession I would have not been able to do that. So here I am 

Please tell us a little about your entrepreneurial journey

Arouba Kabir: I wanted to create a place which I needed when I wanted the help, but could not get-so I combined psychology, Yoga, Meditations, art therapies and medicine at Enso Wellness. 

With a lot of support from everyone around me, I was able to get the training I needed from different parts of the world and started my own venture in 2015.

Enso Wellness is a place where one is free to create and become who they want to be for the betterment.

I am not only helping myself every day but also helping many people out there with my learnings, experiences and skills. 

One of my greatest joys is being able to explain the complexities of human conditioning in simple, accessible language.

I am deeply committed to helping people all over the world feel understood, accept their joys and pains, and become motivated to make meaningful changes in their lives.

Kindly brief us about Enso Wellness, its specialization, and the services that it offers 

Arouba Kabir: Our Mission is to enhance the lives we touch by helping people reach their goals. Small goals. Big goals. And everything in between.

As we understand the importance of mental health and wellness in leading a fulfilling life. We provide psychotherapy services (Counseling, Clinical), Art therapy, Life and Wellness Coaching, Yoga, Meditations and also connect our clients with Psychiatrist if needed. 

We work with individuals, families, Corporates, Educational institues and NGOS. We have a team of therapist on board from various streams of Emotional and Mental health.

And now it’s all online. We are working with people from different parts of the world and clients are being benefitted from the comforts of their home or offices. 

What inspired you to start Enso Wellness, and what do you hope to achieve with your organization?

Arouba Kabir: As I did mention, It was purely my own physical and mental health which made me who I am today. And as a therapist and as an entrepreneur, I have had the privilege of working with Individuals, Companies, couples, Families, people with rare/chronic illnesses and Leaders.

Regardless of who you are, we all seek the same fundamental things: safety, security, love, kindness, acceptance, validation, and a sense of belonging.

And through Enso Wellness, I wish to end the stigma with emotional and mental health issues and challenges we all face and try to contribute my bit to make this world a kind and loving place.

In your opinion, what are some of the biggest mental health challenges facing people today, and how can we address them?

Arouba Kabir: Eating disorders, Anxiety, Adjustment issues, Depression, Substance abuse, PTSD, Trauma, Inner Child wounds, Domestic violence are some issues I would like to mention. 

So people feel if you have mental disorders like Bipolar, Schizophrenia etc only then you need to see emotional or mental health professional.

Whereas that is not true-we need to create an awareness that whosoever has a mind will have issues and challenges.

We are taught how to tie a shoe laces or brush our teeth but we are not taught how to navigate and emotions as a child.

So it is absolutely alright if you are going through a difficulty but it is not alright to stay with the difficulty.

How do you approach counseling and coaching clients who may be resistant to seeking help or making changes in their lives?

Arouba Kabir: Well, the beauty of counselling is you cannot help someone who is not ready to get helped. It is a lot of responsibility and accountability.

But at the same time we do keep creating content on various social media platforms so that people keep going through it and get exposed today.

What we do as emotional and mental health professionals. Also when people see change in people who are going for counselling and coaching -that also creates an awareness and that resistance might break.

How do you stay up-to-date with the latest research and techniques in mental health counseling and wellness coaching?

Arouba Kabir: It’s very important for a professional, especially in our profession to keep yourself updated and keep upgrading yourself with new skills.

There are constant researches and programmes I keep enrolling myself in and keep taking internships so that I stay updated with the market.

I myself still have a therapist who I sit with, unwind my thoughts with and I keep working on myself because we humans need to keep working on ourselves. 

What was the inspiration behind turning an entrepreneur. 

Arouba Kabir: Ha ha ha-I have been very honest with you. Turning to entrepreneurship was never a plan, I wanted to be a journalist, work in a media house and become another Barkha Dutt.

But here I am and I choose to be a entrepreneur because of my health. As I did mention that I live with a rare disease- Cystic Fibrosis.

I knew that I am not fit for a 9-to-5 job and I wanted to choose my working hours and I wanted to work in a field which is helping, navigate through the challenges I have in my life. All I would say that when we have your intentions, things fall into place.

How do you prioritize self-care and maintain your own mental and emotional well-being while helping others?

Arouba Kabir: Every thing begins with you especially the field I have chosen. If I am not able to navigate my emotions better, I would not be able to see people for who they are and what they are going through.

So I am an avid reader, I love gardening, a solo traveller, I have two beautiful dog children and I make sure I meditate and exercise every day.

At the same time, I keep learning new things because human brain flourishes on that with an acceptance that I might not be perfect in every thing but I would give my best.

I make sure that I sleep well when the sky is dark outside and I take care of very little things like eating 3 m, a day on time, keeping my social network, healthy, spending time with my family and say No when needed.

What advice do you have for someone who is interested in pursuing a career in mental health counseling or wellness coaching?

Arouba Kabir: It is an amazing field-it not only helps you contribute in the society but it also helps to become a better person.

But before you choose it as a career, I would like you to work on yourself. I see so many professionals who have not worked on themselves, but or in the field they feel drained and burnt out.

Self work is the key, and those who think that this field does not have financial stability-that is not true at all.

If you know your work well, people would start recommending you clients, its word of mouth promotion in this field but if you have not worked on yourself, and if you are not good with your work, you might not be able to survive.

12. What is your success tips for young and aspiring entrepreneurs. 

Arouba Kabir: Constant Self work- Learn how to navigate your emotions. Acceptance – Accept not every thing is going to go according to you and not every thing is going to be in your control. Work on yourself and except yourself for who you are that would automatically help you accept the world and the people for who they are.

Good relationship with rejection-fear of rejection is very normal but if you develop a good relationship with rejection, it would help you go a long way.

Consistency-you need to build consistency until and unless you do not bear that results might not be in your favour.

It is okay, not to be okay, but it is not okay to be like that. Ask for help when needed. Say no when you are not in a position to do something.

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