"So Last Year, I Went in For Therapy, Wrote a Lot About Myself, and Created Journals": Sanya Malhotra

The 29-year-old actor touches on heartbreak, personal growth, and the life lessons she has learnt—and continues to learn—in an exclusive interview with Brides Today.

Sanya is ready to get out of her comfort zone...From building up the courage to ask a man out for a date to learning to place healthy boundaries, read on to appreciate how Sanya is welcoming a new phase of her life.

Brides Today: How have your views on relationships evolved?

Sanya Malhotra: 'I’ve been single for a while now, and my focus has shifted to ‘me, myself, and I’. I’ve been working on my mental health and taking care of myself. I’m truly glad that I got this time to work on myself and get to know myself better because when you’re with someone, one’s attention gets divided. I’m 29, single, and I think I know myself pretty well.'

BT: That is such a wonderful space to be in. What inspired you to take such an important decision?

SM: 'I think break-ups are hard for everyone. That is what pushed me to really work on myself. My last break-up was heart-wrenching for me: a four-year-long, long-distance relationship that began when I lived in Delhi. Right after we ended things, the lockdown was imposed and I was alone in Mumbai. But I took the time to process the situation and understand why things didn’t work out. I also understood that I needed to work on myself and that I wasn’t getting the time to do that. So last year, I went in for therapy, wrote a lot about myself, and created journals... I am truly grateful that I got the time to work on the experiences that weren’t good for my mental health. 2020 was a good year, the year of healing for me.'

BT: What did you learn most about yourself? 

SM: 'I never realised that I don’t know how to strike boundaries in relationships...you see, one isn’t taught these qualities while growing up. The concept of healthy boundaries wasn’t in my system at all! But I find it so inspiring to see people talk about boundaries and mental health these days, especially on social media, and I follow many such accounts. These brave voices have inspired me, and I hope that whoever is reading this gets inspired to work on themselves and get help if they need to.'

BT: And what did you learn about relationships from therapy and introspecting?

SM: 'The value of communication, especially when you’re in a long-distance relationship. Whenever my former partner and I got to spend time together, we were always trying to have a good time. But now I realise that it was equally important to address the issues that came up along the way.'

BT: Coincidentally, your latest movie Meenakshi Sundareshwar is also about a long-distance marriage...  

SM: 'Yes, and I think both Meenakshi and Sundareshwar are really good at it, they know how a long-distance relationship should work. I like that they communicate what issues they are facing in the relationship. I think the movie came as divine timing for me as well! (Laughs).'

BT: Which relationships have inspired you?  

SM: 'Oh, my last relationship was perfect. I’ve been talking about this relationship a lot. In fact, I recently called my former partner and gave him a heads-up that since my film is about long-distance relationships, I might talk about ours publicly. He was very nice about it and told me, ‘It’s okay, you don’t have to inform me’. But I wanted him to know and not be surprised if he read something online. In our case, the distance was the only issue that I faced. Also, since I live alone in Mumbai, I really wanted someone I could live with because I’ve realised that my love language is physical touch and spending time with the person I love. And that was lacking in a long-distance relationship. It is crucial to know what you like and need in a relationship. At this point, I have come to truly, completely love and respect myself, and I think that is much more important than getting into a relationship. Yes, you can grow with the person you are in love with, but you also need to love yourself. Because otherwise, you’ll keep expecting your partner to fulfil that need, and I think that’s putting too much pressure on the other person. It’s like saying, ‘I can’t love myself, please fill this gap for me.'

BT: Do you believe in love-at-first-sight or prefer to go with the flow?

SM: 'It’s love-at-first-sight, and then going with the flow. You know, I’m quite reticent, and I won’t approach a guy, but I’m trying to push myself out of my comfort zone. I feel like an 89-year-old trapped in a 29-year-old’s body (laughs)! But I have decided that the next time I like someone, I may text him, or call and ask him out... Of course, this is just me mentally planning. My new plan is that I’ll go and tell that person: ‘Listen, do you want to go out on a date?’. I can’t even imagine myself doing that! I’m scared to do it, but I need to gather the courage. You can’t just sit and wait for the other person to come and approach you.'

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"So Last Year, I Went in For Therapy, Wrote a Lot About Myself, and Created Journals": Sanya Malhotra

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