Friday, February 12, 2016

Soul Story : The Mindful Warrior - Vanessa Gonzalez

 Soul Story: The Mindful Warrior-

 Vanessa Gonzalez

People met on this journey to living, rather than surviving, have certainly made me (and many others) smile throughout the times spent with them. Practicing yoga regularly and encompassing new friendships throughout has made going forward that much happier. Ms. Vanessa has certainly brightened what I would have thought a task, into something you can laugh at yourself about, and after falling---laugh through the strength it takes in getting back up. Every time we meet and conjure up a new ideas or just shoot the breeze on love, life, education, and meaningful fun things there is never a doubt you will leave without learning or believing higher about yourself or what ANYTHING can become with a smile (she's radiant!). For the many aspects of life that can change, it is inspirational to hear the wellness and positivity from so much has changed one's life, but is willing to get others out NOW and keep that Mindful Warrior strong.

How did yoga come into your life?

Through sports. I started practicing yoga in High School at a racquetball & fitness class to supplement Track & Cross Country. It gave me the flexibility and mental strength to be a better runner.

What allows you to let go and let flow? 

Bring in the present moment and connecting my students. Tuning into what they need as I see them flow.

What have you learned about yourself (inside and out)?

Oh, wow! I can tell you a story about that. LOL… Yoga literally saved my life! Practicing yoga and being an instructor has allowed me to bring awareness to my breath, mind, and body. I changed at a cellular level. Not only did yoga help me physically, but it helped me internally. I suffered from epilepsy and with a consistent power yoga practiced, meditation and good nutrition, I healed. It (yoga) also helped shed the lies I had created in my mind that weighed me down and rediscovered my inner light. My new awareness has brought me back to my faith and now I can see my purpose more clearly. I have become more compassionate and loving with myself. Which in turn transfers over to others.

What in your life has changed due to growth?

Everything! As I stated before, it’s a regeneration at a cellular level. My perspective changed and my world changed. Having the new perspective about myself has opened up doors to opportunity within myself. I realized that I have always enjoyed being into Health & Wellness. The difference now is that I want to share how I feel and do with others. Transforming into the real me has changed my relationship and has opened up the doors to opportunity. 

Describe a Mindful Warrior.

I chose the name Mindful Warrior because we are all Warriors. We go through challenges and obstacles and we get through them. Being Mindful is that part we all need to develop. Mindfulness is about waking up and developing consciousness which will raise us to a higher level of consciousness.

Are there any goals in your future you want to conquer with Mindful Warrior Yoga?
Yes, the goal and vision of Mindful Warrior is to teach our local and global community about Health & Wellness. By collaborating with local organizations and businesses in the future, I would like to take Mindful Warrior to a global level and reach out to people in other countries.

Is there any encouragement to those who are new/shy about practicing yoga?

If you think about it you do yoga everyday without knowing it. You BREATH, with yoga you WAKE UP to a different level of awareness.
    The coolest thing I have seen was a person in a wheelchair do Power Yoga. They only had half their body movement. For me, I could not do a Chaturanga for 6 months! Since I only focused on running I had no upper body strength!

The first step is to come onto your mat as you are.

The rest is up to you, to step out of your comfort zone to come into something new, on or off your mat. Anybody CAN do it! Yoga is for all!

Any intentions for the 'Right Now' in your life? 

Yes, I am on my path toward healing and living my purpose. NO MORE HOLDING BACK!

Life lessons, what do you teach to your students and friends?
1. Everyone makes mistakes. Be compassionate with yourself.
2. When you let go of PEOPLE'S expectations of who you are meant to be, you realize YOU are the CREATOR of your REALITY.
3. Once you align your mind & hear---your true self comes out. 
4. Everyone has their path. Follow yours and you can’t go wrong. Let go of competition and comparison.

As such an inspiring and joyful teacher how do you intend to inspire others?

I intend to lead by example, and inspire others to embrace and love who they are, and to share their passions with others. When we share what we love we come together and create something beyond our dreams. Just like you, me and Sam, we shared what we love to do and now it’s come to this! ;)

Any tips on building a strong foundation (mindfully and/or physically) that can encourage people to keep going in anything they do? 
Yes, my faith really has set my foundation into everything I do, mentally and physically. That being said, not everyone is of the same faith.  From the yogi perspective, at the physical level, power yoga has allowed me to feel my body and hear my breath. As a result it connected mind and heart into alignment which has paved my path to where I am now. It has highlighted my strengths and weaknesses. So, that is a major part of being MINDFUL. It’s recognizing your strengths and your weakness. When you do that, you will see the areas in which you need to focus on. However, it takes discipline and the, “I can CHANGE and I AM Possible”, mentality to COMMIT to growth and set your roots down. Once you know where you need to root down (set your foundation), your branches will open up!

Mindful Warrior Yoga can be found on Facebook and Instagram