1. Hi Rudrani, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
Hello VENTS! So grateful to have this conversation. I have been doing phenomenally well, thank you! Definitely living my best life!
2. Congrats on the release of your third book! After releasing your memoirs, what made you want to tackle the theme of choosing happiness?
Happiness is a tricky subject, and happiness being a choice is a completely foreign concept in this reality. Most people equate happiness as having the perfect relationship, money in the bank or simply an easy life, but what if these were just by-products of being bold enough to actually choose happiness, just because? If it were that easy, I suppose we all would have chosen it by now. This book lays out very pragmatic tools that have worked for me in my pursuit of happiness, and is simply an invitation to consider different choices and possibilities available to create a life full of joy and happiness for anyone who wishes to choose it.
3. How does Choosing Happiness differ from your previous books?
In a way, it’s a follow-up to my first two memoirs. I didn’t think I had anything else to say until I noticed that so many people I would meet at book-signing events would say something like … how in the world are you so happy? You lost everything and almost your life? True story, but I gained so much using tools from the Access Consciousness movement that I decided I had to share them with others that have survived traumas in their lives and show them that they could choose something different.
4. You’ve said that you compare writing books to composing music. Could you describe the process of writingChoosing Happiness and how you incorporate your musical background into writing?
This is an excellent question, thank you! The process is very similar for me. I create a space with no distractions, save maybe a beautiful view… an ocean, trees, nature of any kind. Just like the music I compose, words simply come through me. I many times have my eyes closed, or fix my gaze on the wind through the trees for inspiration as I’m typing on my computer. Choosing Happiness came through me in one weeks time. Songs come that quick as well, usually within a few minutes. And like an orchestra, I hear all the parts from the instruments to the harmonies. When I’m writing my books, it’s as if the stories just come and say, “Hey, what about me?”
5. How much have your past experiences served as a source of inspiration for this book?
All of my past experiences served as a source of inspiration for this book. I have no filters and am completely vulnerable in all my writings, even when I don’t appear to be very smart in my choices through life. To me, there is no right or wrong, no good or bad, it’s just a series of choices. And the cool part is, I can always choose differently if it isn’t working out the way I had imagined. In that way, my past experiences became examples of what could either work or not work in the pursuit of happiness. I guess you could say that my life is an open book.
6. How do you balance the dark aspects of your experiences with such positivity and uplifting tones?
Knowing that I can choose differently if something isn’t quite going the way I had hoped gives me so much freedom. Just because I choose to do something doesn’t mean I can’t un-choose it later. It’s the same with commitments. If something wasn’t working anymore, why would I wish to stay committed to it? That’s not a kindness to anyone involved. It’s a matter of asking myself if something is working for me or not.
It’s the same with composing a song. I loved the way that Prince would use unusual or unexpected harmonies in some of his compositions. It would be something I didn’t expect at all, and that made it cooler and fun to discover. What if your entire life could be that way? What would your life be like if you didn’t look at something that was deemed a failure or different from the norm as being wrong? What if you could say, ya know, that isn’t working for me and choose something different that did? And choose again, and again and again, recreating your life with every choice? Wouldn’t that be uplifting?
7. What would you say the most challenging thing about writing Choosing Happiness? How has the response been so far?
The only thought I had, albeit not challenging, was how my family would receive it. There are bits that are very personal and could be a source of shame in sharing my experiences as a child growing up in an abusive home. I am personally not embarrassed as I see my vulnerability as a way to help others who may have experienced the same growing up. The response has been overwhelming to me, namely from those that have said this book has already changed their lives. If I can reach one person and show them that they can choose something different, then I have succeeded with the intention of this book. How does it get any better than that?
8. What else is happening next in Rudrani Devi’s world?
I have an original, 7 song, Funk-R&B album simply called ‘Rü’ coming out before the end of the year. I’m also presently researching for my next book that will also be along the lines of self-help from my personal experience of overcoming PTSD holistically. The working title is ‘PTSD & Me’. I’ll continue to teach workshops within the Access Consciousness® movement, although next year, I’ll be facilitating abroad. Choosing Happiness is being translated into Spanish for a “10 Keys to Total Freedom” book club class I’ll be teaching in Barcelona, Spain in February of 2020. Now that Access Conciousness® is in 189 countries, who knows what other countries could be waiting for me? I just keep asking myself, what else is possible now?