Aadi: I have known you for years, but would love to hear about your inspirational story and share it with our readers. Would you be willing to share your journey?
Ruby Walia: I was born and brought up in Punjab, which is located in the northern part of India. I finished studying Law, got married in the same year of 1994, and moved to the US. Coming from the small city Kapurthala, the U.S. was a complete culture shock for me. On the contrary, I was super excited to be spending the rest of my life here, in the most powerful nation in the world. In 1995, I had my first baby, Shivani, and in 1997, I gave birth to my son Manav. For 6-7 years, I basically stayed at home and took care of my kids. In the beginning, I was having a hard time communicating and understanding the American accent. Being a law graduate, I was feeling dumb. In 1998, I did an online paralegal course, and scored really well.
In 2000, I appeared for California Bar exam to get a license. I studied hard and scored well, but not enough to clear the exam. I was totally okay with it. Right after that, I volunteered in a few U.S. law firms to get a feel of this type of work. During that time, I realized that I did not enjoy being in that space. I am a person who loves to enjoy my work and wants to look forward to it every day. I had no clue what to do. I wanted to be my own boss. I was clueless as to how I would make that happen. Somehow, I ended up in beauty school. (Don’t ask me how, till date I don’t have a proper answer). I firmly believe that God has better plans for us.
I got my Cosmetology license in 2003 and started to work by renting a station in a salon. Things didn’t work out well between me and my husband; in 2003 we separated, and in 2006 I got a divorce. This was a drastic shift in my life, and my trajectory of struggles started. A roller coaster ride took off. Living in one of the most expensive areas of California (Bay Area), I could not contemplate how I would manage all this alone. I was not financially independent to run all the expenses single handedly. But I have always been a fighter and have never given up. My kids were very young at that time. In 2009, I got my own bigger place next to the same salon where I started my career from. I worked really hard to establish my business, with full dedication, integrity, and honesty. My parents migrated to the U.S. and were my big support system. I would not have accomplished all that I did, had my parents not been there to support me and my children.
The U.S. is a land of opportunities, and if you are skilled, hardworking, and dedicated, you will definitely excel in life. My real learning started as I got out of home, studied, and started my business. Over a period of time, I became a more confident and stronger person. My life challenges, struggles, and difficult situations became my great teachers that have crafted the person that I am today (that I never predicted I would be).
It’s been 16 years since I have been in this business, and I learned and accomplished a lot; from working with Bollywood celebrities to starting my own Non-Profit Organization “Touch A Soul”, to becoming a speaker, writer, and a person who loves life unconditionally.
Life was not easy, with one thing happening after another. In 2012, Yoga became my escape. It tremendously helped in shaping me and my perception towards life. Later, I got trained by one of my best friends, who is a doctor (psychologist) by profession, and an outstanding yoga instructor. I started to offer free yoga sessions to the community once a month and started co-teaching with him. It gave me an amazing sense of peace and contentment.
Yoga led to meditation, and the spiritual side of mine took over. Since then, life has been unfolding in both amazing and mysterious ways and is manifesting my innate wishes.
My life journey has made me more compassionate, grateful, and a humble person. For years, I had a wish as to how I could add some goodness in this world, serve, and give back to the community. In May 2017, “Touch A Soul”, a U.S. based non-profit organization, emerged from this compassion and gratitude. This organization sponsors hot school meals for underprivileged children in the Bay Area, California. “Touch A Soul” is the first ever organization to sponsor school meals in the Bay Area. I feel that we are really blessed, while there are so many families struggling to meet their basic needs. Children are our future, and they should be well nourished and empowered to be successful in life. Every month, “Touch A Soul” sponsors over 3,000 hot school meals, and our mission is to add many more.
As a migrant not only am I grateful to the U.S. for giving me an opportunity to explore myself and excel, I also have a sincere gratitude towards my own country India for bestowing me with great values and culture. I try my level best to give back to that community as well and add some value in the lives of students who are struggling to pay their tuition fees and books.
In 2018, I got an invitation to be a speaker in a Foothill College in Cupertino, California to talk about “Mental Health”, one of the most important and crucial topics to be addressed. This was another innate wish of mine. Since then, I have been getting invited every year to the same college; where I share my journey of challenges, how I found ways to cope with my struggles, and how they shaped me into a stronger, wiser, and better person. I love to interact with people, learn, and explore about everything in life. That’s what gave birth to my blog site, (in 2018) “rubysletshare.blog”, where I try to share my own life experiences. Writing is very therapeutic and has become a way of expressing myself. It gives me a sense of joy and peace.
A few months back in 2019, I came up with “Ruby’s Herbal Hair Oil” formula. It has many ingredients, from various oils to herbs to essential oils. I started with only a few bottles. Whoever had bought my oil was super happy as it was helping them with their hair and scalp issues. Within a few months, it became so popular among people that I have now started shipping it to Canada, London, and many states in the U.S.
Years back, when life shoved me in very tough and difficult situations, I couldn’t find a way out. My mind pushed me in the negative zone (as it usually does). I started to get really horrible thoughts. Those jerked me completely. I somehow gathered myself up, committed myself to not giving up, and did my best to keep moving forward. I bumped into one book (Your Best Life Now by Joel Osteen, a well-known pastor of Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas), and started reading it. It was as though God had handed me that book at the right time. After reading that book, I never looked back. Books became my best friends and teachers. Even now, I learn so much from books. I listen to many speakers. They all uplift me so much. I continuously feed my mind with all the good stuff to get aligned with the higher self of mine.
My few mantras are: “Where there is a will, there is a way.” “Believe in yourself.” “You are much stronger than you think you are.” We all have different trajectories and perceptions towards life. Keep exploring yourself, you have many hidden treasures within that you are not aware of.
At this point in my life, I have gained a higher wisdom that everything happens for a meaningful reason. There is always a purpose behind circumstances that we don’t understand. All the bad experiences turned out to be great steppingstones to get me to where I am today.
I started out as a girl who was simple, shy, introverted, not confident, and naïve. Now, I have transformed into a woman who is ready to take on any challenge in life with grace and is committed to creating her own destiny.
Keep believing in yourself and the divine force. Stay grounded, enjoy every moment of life, and let it take its beautiful course upon you. No matter who tries to teach you lessons about life, you won’t understand it until you go through it on your own. The most important truth that I have realized is that, “life doesn’t happen to us, it happens for us.”
Learn more about Ruby:
Ruby’s Beauty Studio 408-942-1908
Website : http://rubysbeautystudio.com/
Founder: Touch A Soul (Non-Profit)