Rajdeep Gahir, International Expansion Lead at WeWork, the groundbreaking co-working startup. Rajdeep also consults start-ups and writes her own blog.
How can you describe your lifestyle? How do you lead it in order to stay healthy and productive?
It’s pretty hectic but good fun. I own setting up WeWork in new markets and we’re a business at the intersection of technology and physical space. This means frequent travel to new cities between Europe and the USA to check in on markets/ touch base with HQ in New York or originating a new market. Right now, I’m setting up our first WeWork here in Amsterdam and effectively setting up our presence here from scratch. My day consists of spending time on our construction site, seeing the progress of our space and touring potential members, coaching my team here, running to partnership meetings across the city, hosting and attending events and leasing with our centralized teams in NYC on everything from sales & marketing to finance to operations. I’m always on the go, and always online. In short there’s never a dull moment.
I structure where I’m going spend my time in advance everyday and plan one big win I want from each day to stay focused and productive. I also make sure I take 2 hours out for myself in a day – which consists of hitting the gym/ a dance class and having one sit down meal. This important to energize, reconnect and de-stress. I finish each day with a couple of chapters of a book which is calming.
What is your ikigai* (*Ikigai (jap. 生き甲斐) - "a reason for being”)?
Interesting question. For me, it’s – to enrich lives beyond my own experientially. Principally, we live in a society that values chasing incentives that can be inherently limiting experientially and unhealthy from a lifestyle perspective. The work I peruse disrupts the convention and promotes freedom from the 9-5, following your passion and offline connectivity. I think a lot of people aspire to experience more in life, but feel they lack the tools or the feeling of empowerment to make it happen. For me, the more people I can encourage to make it happen, the more accomplished I feel. At the end of the day, my life or success is the sum of beautiful experiences I’ve created for myself and others – so I guess that’s my ikigai!
Is there any nice hobby, great achievement or individual experience you want to share with others?
You could call it a hobby, I generally love cooking, however over the last year or so have been experimenting baking with substitutes and super foods. I find juxtapositions really interesting and have always had a sweet tooth– so the idea of a healthy dessert or cookie that tastes good is good fun. Base ingredients include using dates and agave nectar instead of sugar, nut butters instead of other fats and wholesome groundnuts, seeds and grains in the place of flour. A little bit of dark chocolate is of course always allowed.
What is the role of food&nutrition in your life? How the food impacts your performance. From which type of food you get the most benefits and happily recommend it to anyone etc?
I keep it simple. 70% of the time I will try to eat more for functional energy. (30% of the time it’s more for pleasure) There’s good energy and there is bad energy. Daily performance is dictated by where energy flows and how well it flows is highly correlated to how good or bad the sources of energy you fuel yourself with are. Good sources of energy for me are almonds, eggs, spinach, salmon, avocado, coconut milk, chia seeds, oats, pineapple and blueberries. I also drink a lot of green or mint tea. That’s pretty much my first shopping basket in a new city.
How, when, where you use Ambronite - what do you think about it?
I genuinely interested in food technologies, and couldn’t pass the news about by Ambronite. I was convinced with the nutritional values and the ingredients list looked pretty awesome. I usually take it out in the morning – busy days. Shake it with water/ coconut water and pop in a few blueberries. Feels wholesome and I feel good in terms of energy levels. Stops my stomach rumbling.