Happy Friday world! I recently returned from one of the most rejuvenating vacation of all times. What an apt way to commence the 25th year of one’s life

Traveling teaches one many, many important life skills. However, below are 5 things the Balinese and the vacation taught me. Learnings can be applied to many arenas of one’s life but if you know me—you know where I’ve applied them to—our food and more importantly, your food!

1. Be real, be yourself. People will love you for that

Bali was ripe with it’s own culture. No pretensions whatsoever. This is how we all should aim to be as well. So instead of dissing everything that is quintessential to our own culture (ghee, mangoes, peanuts, bananas, eating with our hands), we ought to embrace it with love, affection and pride

2. Don’t let simplicity scare you

I often encounter many a people who won’t openly acknowledge their love for daal rice or kadhi khichdi. It’s okay guys. It’s not glamours but as someone rightly said, “simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication.”

3. Overcome your fears

I honestly came very close to crying when I went snorkeling in the ocean. But 45 minutes and a ton of positive reinforcement later, I figured my path. I see many clients who are petrified of vegetables. Just mutter the word ‘karela’ and watch their face drain of it’s color. It’s okay to fear the unknown—but it isn’t okay to not try said vegetable or said adventure activity because of personal fears and biases

4. Slow down and enjoy your time

Us fast-paced city dwellers want to cover everything possible in the least amount of time. The race to achieve more in less time can end up making a vacation feel as stressful or more than everyday life. Sometimes, it’s just important to slow down and cheesily enough “smell the roses.” Or the aroma, taste, texture of your food. The more we savor our food, the better it gets absorbed and the more optimally and efficiently the ‘I feel full’ or ‘leptin’ hormone gets released

5. Forget the ego

The Balinese would say sorry all the time! Even for the smallest of things, even when they weren’t at fault.

I vividly recount an incident where a friend of mine accidentally tried eggplant, loved it and upon inquiring and releasing that it was eggplant, refused to then acknowledge her love for it; arguably because of her ego or because she grew up detesting eggplant.

We grow and evolve with time and so do our taste buds. This is absolutely reasonable so just forget the ego and admit you love what you love