Avinya Foundation

#20 Hello 2023

As the sun rises on another new year, 2023 holds the morning breeze of hope and dewdrops of anticipation. We take a deep breath, count to ten and leap…

What’s on the other side? Only time will tell 🙂

How did you ring in the new year? Did you party to the hilt or like me did you prefer a more low key celebration? The Avinya team had a mix of both and are now raring to go as we take a deep breath, count to ten and leap with anticipation, passion and purpose into this new year of hope!

We started off this week, with interviews down in Bandaragama. This is now slowly becoming our second home for our team of Educators. They have interesting anecdotes and stories to share and have thoroughly enjoyed not only the interviews but the workshops with our students. We are close to filling up our fourth class now so Recipe 120 has officially passed the halfway mark and then some. 

We have lots to do on the Operations side as we head into a very critical phase to get things kicked off. Uniforms and essential procurement is bubbling away. Our fabulous technology team continues to chip away at our academic management systems. The whiteboards are strewn with diagrams and timelines. As I walk past, I see coding and complex diagrams on the screens of our technology team. 

Lakshman continues to spread the word about the Avinya impact and he has some exciting news of his own. He’s got a new book out, it’s called ‘Baron’, you should check it out because it is a very interesting read on education and vocational training in Sri Lanka.

As usual, at team Avinya we’ve started off 2023 being as busy as ever and hitting the ground running. We are excited and all geared to get things going. With everything going on, we still took some time this week to reflect on what 2023 means to us and our new year resolutions. I asked my Avinya colleagues about theirs and I got some very interesting answers.

  • To Survive
  • Have more ‘Gentle Goals’ like watching sunsets and dream wildly
  • Write your own story with 12 chapters and 365 pages
  • Remember to write 2023 instead of 2022. I have failed this a few times already this week 😉
  • Inculcate more of Japanese life philosophies

Sanjiva shared an interesting LinkedIn post as he wished us a happy new year which started off some buzzing on the latter.

7 Eye-opening Japanese Concepts that will Transform Your Life


This has definitely had an impact on the whole team as we read and researched more. I shall leave you with four Japanese concepts that resonated with me. 


For those of you who remember, I mentioned Ikigai in one of my blogs last year. Ikigai is your purpose or passion. As I was reading up on this, one article used the phrase ‘your bliss’ to refer to Ikigai. This really connected with me. What really is your bliss?

Years ago, I was stuck between a rock and a hard place and as I spoke to someone for advice, the first question he asked me was ‘what would be your ideal state?’ It took me awhile to understand the question as all I could see at that time was ‘rock’ and ‘hard place’. But that question made me step out of it and relook at my situation. As I ummed and ahhed…he patiently asked me to visualize the solution (no matter how improbable it seemed at the time) and that eventually it will all fall into place. After walking a long and narrow path, it did in the end! 

So, what’s your Ikigai, your bliss? Most importantly, are you living it?

“Be led by your curiosity, and keep busy by doing things that fill you with meaning and happiness.” – Hector Garcia Puigcerver

Shikita ga nai

Let go of what you cannot change.

Ok, I have stories about this. I’m a worrier. No not, warrior, an actual worrier. So letting go, unlike Elsa isn’t in my vocabulary. This is something I learnt after a very traumatic experience a few years ago. There’s only so much you are in control of and to assume more responsibility than one can endure is to slowly hammer that nail into your coffin. Remember your bliss above? You’ll be nowhere close to that. So, maybe Else has a point. Let it go! 


Continuous improvement. Well this is something I strongly believe in and was the foundation of many life changing decisions. Smaller steps with continuous impact are better than giant leaps that leave you resting on your laurels for long periods of time. 

Keep on moving up, changing and challenging yourself. Remember, learn something new everyday!


Incorporate compassion in life, work and product design. 

Sometimes I watch the news and wonder what’s happened to basic kindness and compassion. 

The stresses of life threaten to consume us now more than ever. At times compassion is the last thing on our minds. 

But if the memes on social media tell us anything these days, it is that people crave compassion and kindness. It seems to be becoming a lost art.

“Together we can change the world, just one random act of kindness at a time.” – Ron Hall

Here at Avinya this is something that has really moved me personally. Compassion is at the centre of our work, life and everything we do. 

No matter how busy we get or tossed around by the waves of life, let’s not forget to take time and help someone else smell the roses too.

Finally,it is only apt to end this blog with a famous Japanese saying: 

Nan korobi ya oki  – Fall seven times, get up eight!

Welcome 2023, whatever you hold, we will keep on trying and we won’t give up!

– Anju

Some interesting links: