Dentist by Day, Model by Night

Have you ever felt low in confidence despite being smart? Pune-based Saaransh shares her how getting out of our comfort zone can improve our personal body image.

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If there is anything my life has taught me is the notion that we are the sculptors of our own paths to success.

I was never really into getting good grades or working hard towards my goal up until the eleventh grade. I always wanted to pursue something in fashion as a kid, but coming from a Punjabi family with a background of mostly science and commerce, I was talked into taking up science stream in high school.

The first few months were like a horror for me and I wanted to quit but my family always convinced me not to give up. It took me a while to get used to the monotonous routine of getting up early and studying all day for two years straight to get into a good dental college. I took my twelfth boards as opportunity to prove my capabilities to myself. Seeing the results of my hard work and determination materialize lit a fire within me because the feeling of success was addictive. But I still knew that something was missing in my life.

I was constantly typecast in a specific way in high school – a nerdy, bubbly girl everyone overlooked. I never considered myself even as an average looking girl and until recently, I discovered that beauty is a privilege in our society and it’s sad. I remember having major low self-esteem issues where my anxiety stifled me so heavily that I felt mentally incapable to do anything. At the end of the day, it made me realize that it’s all in your head. Mind can be your best friend and your worst enemy.

During the second lockdown, I decided to get into modelling. I wasn’t looking for anything serious, I just wanted a break from my monotonous routine. I still remember the first campaign shoot I did, I had no idea what I was doing but it made me feel good about myself and I got to be someone new for a day. It made me realize I could pursue another dream while working in the field of dentistry. I knew it would be difficult but we have a rare opportunity at this age to take big risks and experiment with our minds, creativity, and interests – something that becomes more difficult as we get older and our obligations become heavier.

Dentist by Day, Model by Night!

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My family was not very comfortable with the idea of their daughter being a part time model but having an extremely supportive elder sister helped me get through it. It took me a while to make them realize that I could do both and that I would always put my grades over modelling. Modelling not only taught me to be confident enough to make the entire world my runway but also made me ponder on the different things I could achieve in life while pursuing dentistry.

Dentistry for Career, Modelling for Confidence

I learnt that we tend to beat ourselves up over the tiniest things without realizing the harm we’re doing to ourselves. My end goal is become a dentist but modelling inspired me in ways I never could have imagined. I feel like a brand new person around the camera and it is something I want to do for myself and not for anyone else.

It’s easy to say that we’ve no time to do something for ourselves but what matters the most is how we make time for something we aspire. Being a part time model has not only taught me how to manage time well but also to love myself and overcome all the body image issues I’ve faced as a teenager.

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