Updated: Mar 30, 2021
Who: Abhi Duggal
City: Lauderdale By the Sea
Quote: “I didn’t get homesick when I moved here from New Delhi. It took me about 20 minutes to adapt to living in Broward. The ocean, the trees, all the green areas and the open minded people: I was instantly dazzled.”
I teach five yoga classes per week, more when I gather some friends to join me...no fancy gym with a sauna...no Lululemon clothes. That is the way yoga is practiced India, people just gather and do it in a relaxed, non-commercial way
“Right from the beginning, Broward was right for me. The first thing I noticed here was the easy access to nature. The ocean, the sand, all the green space is right there. In India it takes hours to get to nature and here, it’s all around me.
My yoga and meditation students always ask me about India since they know that yoga was created there thousands of years ago. India can be a frantic place. You can ride a bicycle next to an 18-wheeler and be sharing that same road with a pack of cows. Anything goes and you must constantly compose yourself and learn to be calm within.
I grew up with spirituality within me and some of that came from my mother who is a professor of Vedic studies. Through teaching yoga and meditation, I get to share what I know with everyone.
When I am not teaching yoga and meditation, I work on my youtube channel, www,youtube.com/meditatewithabhi. I have thousands of subscribers and over a million views per day and now I am starting to make money with it. I put practical meditations on there, like the Art of Waking up which has a soothing mantra alarm clock. You know, it makes a difference to slowly rise with a soft meditation instead of the alarm you have set on your cell phone. The way you awaken influences your entire day.
Other videos I have produced are about mysteries of the mind and ego, chakra balancing, proper breathing, accessing your subconscious self, falling asleep, having gratitude and even a guided meditation and body scan to help you relax.
Through the classes I teach, I have learned that the most common challenges people have is stress from work, having an overthinking mind, projecting worries and future fears, not having confidence, maintaining relationships and wanting more money. My channel shows ways to live with those challenges. I am driven to do these videos because I really do have a way to show how to get guidance.
I’ve surrendered to the process of creating the videos and they get thousands of views. Even though they are only a few minutes long, they take me hours to produce. I write a script, I wait for the right light and I scan myself to see if I can come across the way I want to. You can see how much my production skills have evolved from the early videos.
My yoga teaching has evolved too. When I first started teaching I was almost a performer with standing on my head and doing difficult poses. I have become more grounded and discovered what it takes to challenge people. I help them get to their comfortable limit without frustrating them with postures beyond their capabilities.
The yoga routines I do vary depending on the energy in the room. Certain basics are consistent. I always start with breathing then move to loosening the spine with twists, cobras and downward dogs. I want everyone to feel their serotonin and oxytocin releasing, kind of like when someone likes your picture on Facebook.
I teach five yoga classes per week and add more when I gather some friends to join me. That’s the way yoga is in India. People just gather to do it in a relaxed, non-commercial setting. There is no fancy gym with a sauna. There are no Lululemon clothes.
Yoga and meditation have been part of my life since I was a little kid. I am a tech guy who until a year ago spent years as a software engineer. My clients were big companies like Coca Cola, Rubbermaid, Johnson and Johnson and a lot more. I would live in the cities where I worked on these communication systems and I got to see a lot of the country. I would go for long walks with clients and get to know them that way. I meditated and did yoga every day no matter where I was and for the most part, I remained blissful. A couple of years ago I decided to follow that bliss and share this spiritual path.
Will doing a youtube channel and teaching yoga and meditation be a sustainable life? Maybe. Perhaps it will just be a good life. All those years of engineering tech communication systems and now I am both the tech guy and the client. My worlds have collided.
I am certain that if you follow what you love, the rewards will come."
“I am Anita Mitchell and I collect people stories, much the same way people collect shoes or baseball cards or Lladro porcelain figurines. During my 26 years at WSVN7, I had the front-row seat to people stories and it was there I learned about the extraordinariness of the ordinary.
Since retiring from television news, I serve on the Board of Directors of Different Brains, a charitable foundation that supports neurodiverse adults. I also serve on the Board of Directors of the Broward County Sports Hall of Fame. We honor local residents who have set unique standards of excellence through sports.
Since 2004, I have swum competitively with our local Swim Fort Lauderdale Masters Swim Team (SFTL).
I don’t really know how the writing and the swimming and the neurodiverse and honoring local sports figures are connected but I know in my heart that they are.