Meet the Women Behind LILAS

At LILAS, when we say that we are dedicated to “wellness for women by women,” we really mean it! All of us bring our unique personalities, experiences, and skills to the table in working towards this shared mission. We are also real women navigating our own wellness journeys. Here’s a little bit about each of us: 

Deeksha Gulati, Founder 

University of Pennsylvania Alum (BA in Biology), Public Health Professional (MPH from Columbia University); Continuing my health obsession and currently studying to get my certification as a Health Coach (IIN)
How do you prioritize wellness in your life? 

For me, being self-aware of what triggers stress for me and what helps me regulate it, is critical. One of the most important things I do for my well-being is to bring in practices that help me regulate my stress levels on an on-going basis versus waiting for a daily self-care ritual. For instance, if I’m starting to feel particularly overwhelmed, I take a step back, understand my trigger in a situation (off late reading the news) and change my behavior to regulate my stress. For me this includes – taking a break to make a cup of tea/coffee, meditating or praying, lighting a candle or some downtime with my daughter. 

What is one of your go-to self care rituals?

Pre-Covid: movement & massages; Post-Covid: movement & meditation

Do you have any content recommendations (books, TV shows, podcasts, etc.)?

TV show: Unorthodox; Podcasts: How I Built This; Book: French Children Don't Throw Food

What excites you most about the LILAS mission?

The potential to not only improve the lives and well-being of women but to drive change in society to truly transform the way women's health & wellness is viewed and catered to. 

Danielle Destiny, Program Manager

University of Michigan alum (Go Blue!), aspiring physician, and avid baker

How do you prioritize wellness in your life? 

I always make time for some kind of movement throughout the day, whether it be a long run, yoga, or an afternoon walk. I've also been making a conscious effort to be more emotionally aware so I can better manage day-to-day stress.

What is one of your go-to self care rituals?

I LOVE being in the kitchen. Any time I'm feeling overwhelmed, or had a bad day, or just want to give myself some "me" time, you can find me trying a new recipe or baking something to satisfy my sweet tooth.

Do you have any content recommendations (books, TV shows, podcasts, etc.)?

Game of Thrones, The Doctor's Farmacy Podcast, Sherlock, When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

What excites you most about the LILAS mission?

I've always had an interest in working in healthcare, but as I started doing research and studying to work in the industry, I realized how little female representation there is. I'm excited about the LILAS mission because it's helping to bring women's health priorities to the forefront of medicine. LILAS is empowering women to have more autonomy in their health and wellness choices, something that has been lacking for far too long.

 

Starr Shapiro, Sales & Marketing Intern

Columbia University '21. I love to dance and read in my spare time!

How do you prioritize wellness in your life? 

I carve out time in my schedule to exercise almost every day. I've found that exercise is key for helping me release stress, maintain focus in my other tasks throughout the day, and generally just feel like myself. It's as important for my mental health as it is for my physical health, so I make it a priority!

What is one of your go-to self care rituals?

As often as possible, I take time to stretch and listen to music or a podcast while doing it. It's very relaxing and a way of activating both my mind and body!

Do you have any content recommendations (books, TV shows, podcasts, etc.)?

My favorite television show of all time is Scandal!

What excites you most about the LILAS mission?

I love that LILAS has an inclusive message and wants to help the wellness goals of all different women by hearing directly from women. 


Anupriya Seksaria, Marketing Intern

University of Notre Dame '23 

How do you prioritize wellness in your life? 

Striving for progress, not perfection is the motto I live by to prioritise wellness in my life. Earlier, I used to overwork myself and was never satisfied until I felt that my work is 100% perfect. But now, I try not to be so hard on myself. To relax my mind and body, I try to exercise at least 5 times a week: may it be running, karate or yoga. It not only changes my body but even strengthens my mind and betters my mood :)

What is one of your go-to self care rituals?

Sleeping and waking up on time!

Do you have any content recommendations (books, TV shows, podcasts, etc.)?

Headspace- an app for practicing mindfulness 

What excites you most about the LILAS mission?

The fact that LILAS is one of the only firms I know that is run by women for women, excites me! I love how at LILAS Wellness we want women to feel important, to feel empowered and to be in control of their well-being.


Kyra Ann Dawkins, Marketing & Communications Intern

Columbia University '20 (Roar, Lions, Roar!), READER, Novelist, Mickey Mouse Superfan

How do you prioritize wellness in your life? 

A huge part of my wellness journey is navigating how to be honest with myself about how I'm feeling. There are all kinds of variables in life that might put things (i.e. sleep) out of balance for a period of time. But it is important to me to take a step back and evaluate my overall wellness so that I don't fall into perpetual bad habits. 

What is one of your go-to self care rituals?

I LOVE journaling. Honestly, if I didn't journal, I probably would have spontaneously combusted by now. There is something notably therapeutic about placing my thoughts outside of my mind so that I can process them more effectively.

Do you have any content recommendations (books, TV shows, podcasts, etc.)?

Books: The Island Beneath the Sea by Isabelle Allende, Life Undercover by Amaryllis Fox; TV Shows: The Twilight Zone, Phineas and Ferb; Podcasts: Speaking of Us, Sugar Calling

What excites you most about the LILAS mission?

I really appreciate how intentional LILAS is about building community and service. LILAS engages in discourse surrounding issues women care about and generates products to meet women's needs. Seeing that level of intentionality is really inspiring. 


Juliana Furigay, Product Development Intern

Columbia University '23

How do you prioritize wellness in your life? 

I prioritize wellness by making self-care a priority in my day-to-day routine. I've found that decluttering carries a positive impact on my well-being. Whether it's cleaning my home or organizing my to-do list on monday.com, I'm always seeking out ways to simplify the clutter. I also try to maintain a consistent sleep schedule, even during busy weeks like finals.

What is one of your go-to self care rituals?

Consistent exercise is key to increased productivity and stress relief. I’ve been doing Chloe Ting’s workout videos, and they’ve helped me stay active and maintain a sense of normalcy during quarantine.

Do you have any content recommendations (books, TV shows, podcasts, etc.)?

My favorite podcasts are How I Built This and Modern Love. I also watched the entirety of Outer Banks in two days, so you’ll definitely be hooked on this show!

What excites you most about the LILAS mission?

The gender gap in health has persisted for centuries, but we are now in a prime position where women are at the forefront of the health and wellness industry. We must leverage this position to address issues affecting women’s health and understand how we can maximize our wellness.

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