This week The Think Pot takes you to meet Ann D’Silva, an accomplished Indian Author based at Turkey, who is also a former corporate leader who transitioned from the global corporate stage to embrace her true calling as a storyteller. With over two decades of senior management roles across the world, she now passionately advocates for subjects often ignored, serving as a humanitarian, social impact champion, and thought change advocate. Let’s now hear in her own words at Visionary Voices, how this Social Change Ambassador envisions a kinder, better world through the power of words and deeds. An exclusive interaction with Mahima Sharma.
How do you use storytelling to convey messages of peace and empowerment in your books and speeches?
Storytelling is the most powerful medium of connecting with people, like parables of old, or folklore. The best way to share a thought or create awareness for a change in narrative is through storytelling. It is vivid and colorful highlighting authentic journeys that enable people to relate, connect and feel the essence of the message .
I use my books to talk about social stigmas, biases, taboos and all regressive thinking that belongs in the dark ages not in the present time.
Education, technology and exposure has given us a golden opportunity to be different from the dark ages and history is available on the internet so we can be constantly reminded not to replicate the past. Peace and Love is a need of every human being, hence not a right given by societies but a right given through birth as a human being. As custodians of today, we have to ensure that the canvas widens and does not become patches of convenience for a select few only, for in a palette of colors there is room for all.
Can you share your approach to portraying diverse cultures in your work to promote diversity and inclusivity?
Beauty of life is in diversity and I travel to various countries as an author, peace ambassador or activist to experience various cultures and its richness and then bring it to light through articles, videos, campaigns etc. My approach in life is simple: monotony is a frog by the pond side attitude, if one truly wants to enrich their life they need to be open to change. There is a beautiful world waiting to be experienced so why prison oneself in self defined boxes of limits. There are so many friends to be made if only we find a place in our hearts to allow people to be celebrated as they are and celebrate our own authenticity as we are, what a wonderful world that would be.
Two wars raging in two sensitive zones of the world, lakhs of people dead. As a Global Goodwill Ambassador, how do you advocate for such global causes that have shaken humanity? What role do you think you can play here or are playing here as a harbinger of peaceful thoughts?
Such atrocities are against the very construct of being a human being. It’s not a historic problem, nor a geo-political one nor an antisemitism problem, it’s just a lack of humanity in reality. A black spot on the canvas of humanity which will never be forgotten. 100 plus days of human dignity stripped – still going on unabated, genocide and murder of children with no conclusive steps to initiate dialogue and restore peace. Starvation, disease, death and destruction is rampant daily as dogs eating dead bodies is horrific, I look with shame at how stripped of our humanity we stand without compassion, empathy, and friendship. Mindless rage, delusional and dysfunctional mindsets will create that which it bears within, the monster.
The true humanity we see in these darkest hours is the common man all coming together to help those who have no voice, no strength, no support. The elected are sadly standing on the wrong side of humanity and life with their continued silence or refrain to bring about a cease fire in this humanitarian crisis.
It has also taught us who to place our faith in: the common men and women, our heroes despite ethnic variety, they stand as one for the oppressed. Humanity shines through these people, who are protesting for these maimed children, starving people, homeless families,they are light and light is born to dispel darkness.
With tears and a shattered heart I have observed the strength of the masses and I am hopeful that the masses will choose better leaders for tomorrow for the ones of today owe an apology to the people of the world for their complacence.I stand against anything that takes lives, for life’s a blessing. My part is to speak up for the loss of life and for the reinstatement of dialogue and immediate ceasefire. Charlie Chaplin’s quote is apt for our times, “You need Power, only when you want to do something harmful, otherwise Love is enough to get everything done.”
What’s your take on harmonizing leadership, gender harmony, and human rights? How can this be done by common humans to make the world a better place?
We need humanization of leadership first, making compassion, empathy, conflict resolution, accountability for actions as a part of mandatory CV / portfolio requirements for selection of leaders, then the natural progression to harmonizing leadership will follow..
A leader is only a custodian not an owner, hence he/she is not above the laws of humanity or the land. Gender harmony and human rights is something we talk about regularly yet each year we return to find the numbers of victims on account of system failures only escalating.
We have to go back to the drawing board and add to it, issuance of policy and laws will not fix the problems, till implementation, measurability come into play. Society in the last few years has facedcountless challenges first covid, geo-politics, wars, climate crisis and in each disaster, women and children are the highest targets of violence and exploitation.
One step forward, then three steps backward. We have to inculcate values in the younger generations by being better role models today, or else the cycle will continue.
Your YouTube channel, “Impacting Lives with Ann D’Silva,” helps you reach a broader audience and spread your message. How are you planning to use the same for spreading the message of peace and NO WARS, in a better way? What is your strategy for the next six months?
I have used my youtube for my poetry, campaigns and some human rights discussions. I intend to have guests from various countries, NGO’s and faculties be a part of my guests for a wider spectrum of subjects for conversation and different perspectives that interest me the most. A safe environment for all to be free to share their opinions and tell their stories. Many surprises are coming up in the next six months… let’s leave some excitement for 2024 to unveil some interesting projects.
What advice do you have for those aspiring to become authors or social impact speakers, based on your experience? In a world that is fast becoming gagged, how must they ensure that the power of the pen and democracy stay intact together?
Firstly stay true to yourself even if nobody believes you, never stop believing in yourself. What you think becomes your reality. External validation will never feel as good as inner authenticity and dignity does..
Keep a journal, never miss penning an idea, dream beyond boxes of limitation,time travelgo to different places and experience it as you, the more the detail, the better reading experience for your readers.
Flow and flow and flow, let life happen to you and stop waiting for a sign….flow. If you believe in life and people then you are on the right side of democracy, you don’t need to raise your voice to prove a point, you just need to create a tribe that values the same ethics and that support is priceless, together everyone grows.
With your various roles, how do you effectively manage and balance your responsibilities at home, and what fulfilment do they bring to you?
My loved ones are my strength, reciprocal love doesn’t need to be worked on, it’s a blessing that keeps one going through rough weather and smooth roads. Family to me is not only blood relatives but also the people that pray for me, care for me, nurture me and I them, they too are my family and I carry them in spirit with me.
It’s fulfilling to see my loved ones excel, grow, change and adapt, being a part of such a process is a blessing to me. I am daily grateful for the support of friends from all over the world, a place where there are no borders, only good intentions is where my tribe exists.
ABOUT ANN D’SILVA
From her globally impactful trilogy “Sand and Sea” to her poetry collection “Verses: Of A Risen Phoenix,” Ann’s work transcends borders. Ann’s accolades are many but the chief ones, include being a Best Selling Indian Author, Global Goodwill Ambassador, and recipient of the UNESCO Books for Peace Award, underline her commitment to making a lasting impact on societal narratives.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in the above interview are the personal opinions of the protagonist/protagonists for which The Think Pot is not liable in any manner. To share your views on an apolitical and intense subject like this you can reach out to us at email@example.com