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from depression

Just recently, I got to know that a very good friend of mine went through a lot when the rest of us thought she was just being pricey because she met new people in her life. There wasn’t much we could do as she had stopped responding to all of us and we were not physically close to understand why that was happening. So, I thought the month that celebrates WOMEN would be a great time to put her story out there and also help those who would be going through the same dilemma as she did.

Brace yourselves!

1. Sameera, tell us about you and how your travel escapades began?

I am originally Indian and my mum is Sri Lankan. I was born and raised in Kuwait. I started working right after high school as my dad wasn’t able to send my 3 sisters and me to University. My mum calls me her son because I’m the tough one compared to my sisters. I am also the ‘black sheep’. I spent about 13 years working in HR before I decided to call it the quits. I didn’t really know what I wanted to do after that last HR role, so, I decided to travel out of Kuwait in search of my purpose.

I’ve always been a very curious person. I always knew there was more to life than Kuwait. I had 3 sisters and no brothers, so my father was like my dad, brother, uncle, God, all in one. My dad was overly protective and mum was the chilled out one, but I guess, eventually, she also started to sound like him.

I went off to university when I was 29 and graduated with a BBA at 31, and majored in Retail Operations. This was when I started my backpacking adventures. I used to travel quite a bit in my 20s, but I visited countries where I knew people and felt safer staying with them too. In September 2015, my trip to Rome changed everything. I reacted to a simple situation which no one else reacted to. That was when I realized that I’m the toxic seed in that group. I wasn’t sure if it was just me or because of the people I was surrounded with. But, I knew that this was bad!

Like I said, I always knew there was more to life. And, it wasn’t only about Kuwait but so many other things, too.

My hobbies involve traveling, yoga, meditation, writing in my journal, self-development work and books related to it, connecting with people, Reggaeton music, singing, etc.

2. What was your personal and love life like?

I was someone who was afraid of everything, so, honestly, I just spent most of my life hiding in shadows (mine as well as others). I hated being in the spotlight. I would try so hard to fit in by pleasing everyone around me. But, still, I would never really fit in.

I dated the wrong men. Being ambitious myself, I would date guys who lacked ambition. But, I was constantly taken advantage of and was like a puppet in all friend circles. I never knew what I wanted though I knew what I didn’t want.

My relationships included no boundaries, no support, boyfriends who cheated, people pleasing, etc. and all this suppressed and hid the real me. I would be upset, sad, angry, confused because I tried to control things even if they were out of my control.

It’s been 3 years since my last boyfriend and I broke up. Between then and now I haven’t been in any relationship though I spoke to a few which didn’t materialize into anything.

Unlike before, I do not want to settle down with just anyone. I know my worth and whoever comes into my life gets to ride along. He definitely needs to be adventurous, open minded, and someone who wants to grow. Also, not to be too specific but he must be 6 foot or taller. Hahaha!

3. When and what changed in you? Your mindset? How?

I began suffering from depression for about 13 months starting December 2017 and was in denial for most of that period. It ended up with me being sent to a mental health facility. When I was there, something within me shifted. I was living with homeless people, thieves, prostitutes, suicidal patients, drug addicts, people speaking to Ghosts and God and more. I was shocked but, somehow, I found beauty in all these people with whom I had spent the next 7 days with. I found strength in their stories.

4. What did you decide to do then?

When I got home, I found myself cruising through my world. I stopped controlling things. I took one day at a time. I started with putting myself first (less people pleasing). And, I started being myself.

I travelled a lot. I have a gift of connecting with people, which I didn’t really know at the time. But, these connections helped me overcome my fears. I stepped out of my comfort zone, every chance I got. I knew what I wanted and started chasing my dreams.

I was following life coaches for a while and I found myself being drawn to them more after my ‘episode’ and ended up hiring my first coach in the summer of 2019. I knew I was on the right track, but I needed someone to show me things from a different perspective. Then, I hired 2 other coaches for different purposes. The more I knew, the more I wanted to know. It was like a never-ending road of learning, about myself. Besides living as my authentic self, I also fell in love with myself and my body.

To reiterate, I decided to do a lot of traveling, self-development work and go on a journey of self-discovery and love.

5. What steps did you take finally, to get out of your depression?

I put myself first. I started doing things for myself. I focused on what made me happy and stayed away from anything and anyone that caused me pain. Traveling made me happy, so, I would travel a lot, before COVID hit, of course.

6. What specific type of people did you have to keep your distance from?

I am someone who is high on energy and, fortunately or unfortunately, all types of people are drawn to that. As an empath, I can feel people’s vibes and energy and, therefore, I am able to choose who is allowed into my space. So, I try and stay away from energy vampires; people who find ‘problems’ for every solution and those who shut ‘dreamers’ down. 

from depression
After everything changed!

7. Tell us about your current lifestyle.

If it wasn’t for COVID, I would be traveling and doing volunteer work.

But, I’m a home bird now. So, I spend most of my time studying something or another. I’m currently pursuing my NLP certification as well as studying more about human design. I do freelance recruitment projects like supporting businesses and recruiting the right candidate for the right role.

I also take care of my dad who has become mentally ill, so, that’s like a full time caregiver, too.

8. How do you feel now?

I’m pretty content with life. I have no FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) now though I do, sometimes, wish that I could be elsewhere, even if it’s a short getaway.

When I have client sessions and see shifts and when they share their wins with me, my heart shines so bright that I am reminded of why I do what I do.

9. Are you giving sessions to those in need?

I am currently offering one-on-one sessions and also launched my program called Rise Up, Diamond. The sessions cover a single topic per session and lasts for about 50 minutes to 1.25 hours.

Rise Up, Diamond is a 6-week program where I guide people to be the boss of their own lives, overcome their fears, slay negative mindsets and just show up as their authentic self.

I also do Human Design (HD) readings. HD is a person’s energetic blueprint. It is full of insights about who you came here to be, what you came here to do, your highest potential and practical information about your health and daily routines in order to get connected to your most authentic self. If you live your life based on this, you are gold. I introduce HD during my programs and I offer the reading for free as a bonus.

Those who feel that they could benefit from my sessions can contact me on email: [email protected] or DM me on my gram @thesecretlifeofsamie.

10. What is your general advice to those who may be going through the same as you did?

NEVER suppress your emotions. This is the worst thing a person can do to themselves. Feel your feelings. Release all that negativity you are holding onto.

Always find the lesson from the situation and take steps to move on from it. We cannot change the past. We cannot control the future. But, we can choose what to do with our present.

If you need help, speak to a professional. Depression or anxiety is not a shameful thing. Release it by speaking to someone about it.

Life, really, is beautiful. You make this world a little bit more wonderful just by being in it. Recognize who you are. Realize your value – when you do this, other people will recognize you too.

And remember, things happen FOR US and not to us.

Most of us go through these stretches of depression without even being aware of it. It is strong women like Sameera who go through it, realize it, overcome it and then decide to help others get through it, too. That’s why the title from Depression to Diamond. I appreciate people who want to make the world a better place despite their own struggles. Join me in applauding such women and bringing out their stories in order to to support other women in need.

Happy Women’s Month!

from depression
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This blog post is part of SpeakEasy Blogging Challenge by Dipika and Ruchi.

Cindy D'Silva
Cindy D'Silva
Cindy D'Silva, besides being a mother of two angels, is a belly dancer, writer and photographer. She loves partying, bowling and eating sushi. There is a detailed biography about her on the ABOUT ME page in case you would like to know more. :) You can like and follow her Facebook page to get all updates on the latest blogs and more:


  1. Sameera is really an inspiration…. fighting with depression is not an easy thing but our own will power and love n support of friends and family definitely helps a lot.

  2. Neeta Kadam says:

    Such an inspirational story. We all have gone through this. Her journey from depression to help people is really tremendous.

  3. Everyone is fighting their own battles. Depression is something people around cannot guess from external appearances. She is a fighter.

  4. Bhawna Shah says:

    An interesting and motivating post . Sameera Shaikh is a brave woman with all zeal to live a life . Kudos to Sameera Shaikh. Lots of love to Sameera

  5. Its wonderful to know how travelling changed Sameera’s life and how she started looking at things from a different perspective. Above all, this only goes on to re-inforce that timely help HELPS

  6. Neeta Kadam says:

    Sameera journey is so incredible! Being in a depression, overcome through it and helping other people’s , really hats of to you, girl. Mental health should be accepted and there is a always a positive way.
    Lovely, inspiring woman!!

  7. Cedric Noronha says:

    Very good post. You have penned down a nice interview with your friend Sameera Shaikh about inspiration. Nicely written. Keep up the good work.

  8. Really interesting post Cindy. Will surely contact her as I would like to interview her for a newspaper article. Happy women’s day to you!

  9. One of the most inspiring stories I have read today…Its not easy to speak about one’s life and share dark secrets. Kudos to Sameera for inspiring us through her story. Her initiative in helping others to deal with depression is amazing. Thank you for writing this amazing interview, Cindy.

  10. sakshi varma says:

    A very inspiring journey indeed. From the depths of depression to giving a hand to others, Sameera has really come a long way. Wishing her all the success on her chosen path.

  11. This story is such an inspirational story.Thanks for sharing.

  12. That was quite an inspirational story. Depression can be quite a prick. The fact that therapy, coaches and prioritising yourself worked for you, were some of the take aways.
    Wishing you all the luck and love in your life Sameera.

  13. Such an inspiration post. Kudos to sameera. We, at one point go through what sameera went through. As she said, talking out and seeking help would matter. And would pull you out of it.

  14. Surbhi Prapanna says:

    Wow Sameera’s journey is really inspiring. from suffering from depression to now running a special program to help is really incredible. I agree with her advice that people should not feel shame about their mental health issues and should talk more about it freely. this is the first step can help a lot in long term. thanks Cindy for sharing her journey with us.

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