The world is changing for women, with more women creating their paths to happiness, but many women of South Asian descent still abide by cultural expectations that leave them feeling isolated, empty and unfulfilled. There’s a noticeable lack of safe spaces for Canadian women of South Asian descent to talk about their struggles, fears, and desires. That’s why Dimple Mukherjee, an occupational therapist with certifications in health coaching and applied positive psychology, created Bindi Parlour, bringing together women in a sacred circle to speak their truths and forge happier healthier lives.
Dimple Mukherjee was born in Mumbai, India, and spent the first 12 years of her life in Taipei, Taiwan. Growing up in Taipei was simple, carefree and fun. The transition into making Toronto home occurred when Dimple was on the verge of entering her teenage years. Being exposed to different countries and cultures allowed for rich experiences and led Dimple to understand the importance of connecting with your roots and yet maintaining your identity. But trying to fit into the Canadian/Western way of living was tough for Dimple. The clash of cultures created significant challenges in all aspects of her life including dating, socializing, academics, and future expectations. She eventually broke out of the mold and left home to study Occupational Therapy (OT) at Queen’s University in her late teens.
Dimple’s 20 plus years in Occupational Therapy (OT) and exposure to chronic physical and mental illnesses taught her that good health is achievable through preventative measures. As a young mother, Dimple realized that so much of her and her children’s health was really in her hands, and her interests shifted from the disease model of medicine to preventative medicine.
As Dimple started to groom her professional life and health around the principles of holistic living and natural medicine, her marriage was falling apart. With three boys in tow, life became extremely stressful. Worst of all, she felt isolated and feared being judged, especially by the South Asian community as a whole. It was the darkest period of her life but in this adversity, she found solace in self-care and healing practices. Having the courage to be vulnerable and sharing with a community of women who understood her pain and challenges was a crucial step in her healing, paving the way to a life of happiness and meaning.
Dimple’s work with South Asian women and her determination to empower them to lead her to create Bindi Parlour. Bindi Parlour provides a safe container where women gather to be heard without judgment. Led by Mukherjee’s gentle questions and group activities, women gather around in a circle in living rooms to explore themes such as self-compassion, gratitude, vulnerability, engagement, and meaning, creativity, life values, resilience, and grit. The mood is light, fun and playful, and yet there is depth. Conversations are mindfully facilitated. Intentions are set. Rituals pave the way. Journaling is at the core. Senses are lit up by essential oils, candles, nourishing foods, raw chocolates, melodies, and visualizations.
Bindi Parlour is a “girls night in” where 8-12 women gather with their friends to experience a deep connection through facilitated conversations and soul play. This experience takes place in the comfort of a friend’s home, a woman who invites the sacred energy of Bindi Parlour into her home and hosts a girls’ night in. Think of it as one of the Tupperware parties of yore but with instead of walking away with dishes; you leave with a deeper connection to yourself and others. Living rooms, dining rooms, backyard patios and even restaurants with separate rooms are all great locations for Bindi Parlour. It’s a fantastic option for unconventional birthday parties, baby showers, bridal showers, and retreats of all kinds.
Bindi Parlour is the first step towards unraveling the dual cultural expectations experienced by Canadian woman of South Asian descent. Participants walk away from this experience feeling uplifted, connected, understood, and inspired to shift towards a life aligned with their desires.
Here’s what the women of Bindi Parlour are saying:
“I thoroughly enjoyed the Bindi Parlour experience. Dimple’s authentic, warm and compassionate presence created a safe and contained circle that allowed me to delve into some emotional distress I had previously been afraid to reflect on. It was when I burst into tears and felt free to allow the tears to flow that I realized how much I was impacted – without the supportive circle I would not have go to that place within me”. ~ Dr. Gursharan Virdee
“It isn’t often that women can get together and be vulnerable in a safe place. To let down your walls and insecurities. To be true to who you are and let the women around you provide such awesome support. Dimple is an excellent facilitator. She ensured everyone felt safe and shared not just at a superficial level but asked thought-provoking questions and made each of us reflect on who we are and what gets in our way of truly loving ourselves.” ~ Shanika Abraham
For more information, visit www.wholeselfconsulting.com
About the Author: Dimple Mukherjee is a holistic lifestyle coach and the founder of Whole Self Consulting and Bindi Parlour, creations designed to help women take better care of their bodies, mind and soul. Having gained insights from her own life and combining those experiences with her knowledge based in occupational therapy, health coaching and applied positive psychology makes Dimple the ideal coach for the modern South Asian woman. She believes in the power of dreams (a.k.a. living with purpose and intention), holistic lifestyle practices and harnessing your intuition to living an abundant life filled with meaning and happiness.
Dimple’s big vision: To lead women to the best versions of themselves through the support of powerful female connections.