This month, we’ll be hearing from inspiring women in our network and sharing their stories. We’re passionate about supporting women, especially in their health and wellness journeys. Read on to get top tips for living, working, and playing optimally from women trailblazers.
Profile: Genevive Savundranayagam
Tell us about yourself.
Genevive is an idealist and optimist born in Sri Lanka and raised in Canada. She has spent over a decade leading marketing and communications programs for agencies, corporations and charitable organizations, including UNICEF – a cause close to her heart. Genevive is the co-founder of Mahara Mindfulness – a contemporary lifestyle brand with a mission to create products and experiences that offer people a stepping-stone into a world of mindful practices and personal transformation. The Human Being Journal is the first of many products she plans to develop to help people live more examined and fulfilled lives. She is also the co-founder of The County Wine Tours in Prince Edward County – Ontario’s fastest growing wine region. When she’s not building brands or unleashing her creative side, you’ll find her jet setting around the world. From hiking mountains in Africa to camping in the Alps, driving across the Pacific Coast or drinking wine through Europe, she’s always up for an adventure. Genevive has a certification in the Fundamentals of Mindfulness from McMaster University, a Masters in Communications from Western Sydney University, and an Honours Bachelor of Science in Psychology from the University of Toronto (St. George Campus). Her curiosity about the world and people drives her and her goal in life is to make a meaningful difference wherever she goes.
What do you consider as your biggest achievement?
Managed one of UNICEF Canada’s largest mass market campaigns which included breaking a Guinness World Record to raise awareness and engage Canadians across the country to join a global movement to help stop preventable child deaths.
What advice would you give to your 18-year-old self?
Know your worth and don’t second guess it. If you don’t know your value, somebody will tell you – and it’ll often be less than you’re worth. Start doing the work early to go inward and get to know yourself better. Knowing your worth is quite powerful. It will enable you early on to clearly articulate what you stand for, more easily ask for what you want, and have the confidence to say no to what you don’t want. It not only benefits your career, but all areas of your life.
How do you stay productive and be your best self at work?
To stay productive, I prioritize my tasks for the week and schedule it in my calendar. With so many competing priorities, it’s hard to stay on top of anything without a plan. But it’s also important to be flexible and not over schedule your day. Something unexpected will always pop up so always have some blank space in your calendar. I typically try and balance my workload with time scheduled in for self-care as well.
What’s your top mental health tip for when the going gets tough?
My best tip is to find a mindfulness practice that works for you. For me, I take time to meditate/pray daily – this includes reflecting on what I’m grateful for, what I want to accomplish and how I can be of service to the world. This spiritual practice grounds me and gives me the strength I need to accomplish my dreams and overcome challenges life throws my way. In addition to this, I immerse myself in nature whenever I can. It instantly brings me peace and perspective. I also journal monthly to check in on my life holistically so I’m always in touch with the bigger picture.
What are your top health hacks?
My best tip is to start each morning with some form of exercise. Whether it’s a ten minute walk or one hour of cardio, I find that moving my body in the morning sets me up for success each day. It is the one habit which I consistently find has a positive domino effect on so many areas of my life. I have more energy, eat healthier throughout the day, I’m more productive and sleep better when I start my day with exercise.
How do you ensure your personal and/or family’s financial wellness?
To ensure financial wellness, I find the most essential thing is to simply be aware of your finances – know what’s coming in and going out. AND check in on your budget monthly. The monthly check in enables you to be more intentional with how you spend, save and invest your money.
What’s your favorite fun activity?
Travelling! But when I can’t hop on plane, I’m quite happy reading a good book or going on a beautiful hike.
Who are your female role models and why?
Aside from my sister who is a working mother (a superhero!) and the most hardworking and selfless person I know, I would say I have been most inspired by the life of Sara Blakely and Audrey Hepburn. Sara Blakely is a powerhouse who built a successful business from scratch while still remaining authentic and true to herself and a champion for other women. Audrey Hepburn has been someone I’ve always been inspired by – she lived her life with intention, fully embracing her creativity and passion, while giving back to the world as a humanitarian and having an optimistic outlook on life.
This month, we’re sharing inspiring women’s stories. Who inspires you? Leave their name and social media link in the comments below!
Read more Women Inspiring Women profiles here.