Deepika Padukone

By Anna Chandy

Todays Woman Tomorrows Child

I have known Deepika since she was a little girl. What amazed me even back then was her curiosity, the need to take risk and push boundaries, which led to diverse experience. In addition she had the ability to enroll several young children along with her and therefore innately was a team leader and in retrospect always worked collaboratively with others to achieve her plan.

These traits from her childhood have contributed to who she is as an individual today. Her curiosity for experience and learning is so deep that she has the ability to take risks and share vulnerabilities that are raw and visceral. Although I was known to her we had not met for several years as she had moved to Mumbai to pursue her dream.

However when she reached out in 2014 when she had the episode of depression I was deeply impacted by her willingness to be raw and vulnerable with me within the first few minutes of our interaction.

As a therapist for over 25 years I am aware of the number of sessions it takes an individual to share their narrative and deep vulnerabilities. Here was an individual who was willing to take the risk even when she was in pain embodying the saying “the pain you feel today will be the strength you feel tomorrow.” That is Deepika Padukone.


Deepika Padukone is a world-renowned actress, fashion icon and mental health ambassador from India.

Her father, Prakash Padukone, is a former badminton world champion. Deepika too was a national-level badminton player until she gave up the sport at the age of 16 to pursue her love for acting. And the rest as they say, is history!

In 2005,Deepika moved from Bangalore where she grew up, to Mumbai,the heart of India’s film industry. Starting with her first movie in 2007, she has over the last decade, acted in close to 30 feature films across genres and won several awards including 3 Filmfare awards and 8 Filmfare nominations for her iconic performances. Many of her films also rank among the highest grossing films of all time.

One of the biggest brands on Social Media, Deepika enjoys an enormous digital footprint of more than 100 million users. Deepika is accounted as the Most Followed Asian Woman on Twitter, with over 26 Million followers. Currently at 37 Million followers on Instagram, she is the most mentioned name on the platform in India.

With a staggering reach of 1.5 billion global users on an average every month, Deepika has been credited as the most searched female celebrity in India.

She has been named by TIME magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world and Forbes magazine has listed her amongst the 10 highest-paid actresses in the world!

In 2014, Deepika was diagnosed with clinical depression and sought professional help to aid her recovery.

In June 2015, she founded The Live Love Laugh Foundation, a not-for-profit that aims to champion the cause of mental health awareness in India with a specific focus on stress, anxiety and depression.

Deepika has been touted as one of Indian Cinema’s most loved and successful actresses till date and her achievements have made her one of the country’s biggest role models for the youth in recent times.

With her talent, commitment, dedication, discipline and hard work, Deepika Padukone has already achieved iconic status even though her journey has only just begun.




Awards & Accolades

The Live Love Laugh

At the peak of her career in 2014, Deepika Padukone started feeling low, empty and directionless. She experienced a sick, pit-ish feeling in her stomach for days on end. On seeking help from mental health professionals, she was diagnosed with depression and soon after, began treatment. While researching her own illness she was exposed to two stark realities –  Mental illness was a taboo topic in India like elsewhere in the world,  and the lack of information and stigma associated with mental illness made it difficult for those who are suffering to seek the help they need. She sought to change this. On New Year’s Day…
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