Life Partner For Long Haul

Jasbina Ahluwalia asks Sheila Dharmarajan: That was so comprehensive. There’s that whole idea of taking that long-term view and not taking the micro view of day-to-day. You’re going to have pockets or hours devoted to one or another of your top goals, as long as your top goals are accounted for over a longer, broader view.

I personally believe that the choice of one’s life partner has an influence over one’s entire life.

As a wife and mother, do you have any tips for women or men with respect to choosing that life partner with a long-term perspective to design a life?



Sheila Dharmarajan

I think that’s right. I know that Sheryl Sandberg has written quite a lot about this topic.


Life Partner For Long Haul: Biggest Decision

Don’t worry about some of the other decisions about work or which jobs. The biggest decision is your life partner. That’s important.

If you really want to create a family and a life with a partner, you need all hands on deck.

You have to find someone who is supportive and knows what’s important to you.

I was very clear that having a career and being a working mother was important.


Life Partner For Long Haul: Personal Preferences

People have different preferences and thoughts. When choosing your life partner, make sure it’s someone who is aligned with you on that.

There is also a certain level of give and take.


Life Partner For Long Haul: Priorities

Sometimes, you have to realize that you have to put someone else ahead of you.

Maybe that’s with their career. Then maybe your time will come.


Life Partner For Long Haul: Flexible 10-Year Plan

One of the big traps that people fall into is, you graduate from college.

You’ve gone to these amazing schools. You’ve achieved so much already.

Then you have this 10-year life plan.

You think in your head, “I want to be this by this age. I want to go to this business school. Then I’m going to reach this goal. I will be a partner by this age. By the way, I’m going to have two kids.”

You should absolutely go for the highest level of achievement and goals that you want. Scare yourself in terms of how high your goals are.

But don’t hold yourself too tight in how you get there.

The one thing that I’ve learned in all of my experiences is that live is all about pivoting and how you react to certain situations.


Life Partner For Long Haul: Pivoting in Life

During the downturn, when Wall Street wasn’t happening for me, I could have fallen into despair and focused on the negative. You need to be able to pivot life.

You need to say, “Okay, how am I going to deal with what’s been thrown my way?”

What you’ll find is, as you balance yourself through those pivots, it all comes together.

You have to be prepared for that and not so rigid in terms of the 10-year life plan that you put together when you were 22.


Jasbina Ahluwalia

There is the saying, “We plan and God laughs.” What you said in terms of pivoting is such a golden nugget for everyone.

I’m sure your media experiences were not in your 10-year plan. They probably flavored your current position in private equity in ways that you never would have imagined.


Sheila Dharmarajan

Life Partner For Long Haul: Grow Together

That is absolutely right. I’m in a position right now that I think is fantastic.

It really encompasses a lot of things, like investing, people and a business that I love.

I don’t know if I ever would have gotten into this position if I hadn’t followed the circuitous path that I did.

I think that’s something important to keep in mind. It’s not always going to go the way you planned.

If you have high achievements and goals, and know ultimately what you’re looking for, don’t worry too much about the path to get there. You’ll get there eventually.


Tell Us:

What did you look for when you chose your life partner for long haul commitment? Drop us a line below in the comments section.


The above is an excerpt from Jasbina’s interview with Sheila Dharmarajan.

The entire interview transcript is at: Sheila Dharmarajan Interview – A Career in Private Equity, Investment Banking & Business Media Reporting

Listen to the entire interview on: Intersections Match Talk Radio – Jasbina’s Lifestyle Show

Listen to the entire interview on Blog Talk Radio: A Career in Private Equity, Investment Banking & Business Media Reporting

Listen to the entire interview on iTunes