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Three Questions: Kelsey, Capital Yoga Girl

Kelsey Harkness is always down to #stopdropandyoga. We ventured out one Sunday in January, chatting all things yoga/DC/wellness. Find her at @capitalyogagirl and #yogaintheusa. 

What does wellness mean to you?

A lot of people define wellness by working out and eating healthy. This is true, but wellness also encompasses so much more. I don’t remember the last time I stepped on a scale or the last time I said no to a cheeseburger just because I wanted to be skinny. Wellness, to me, is finding the balance between your mental and physical health—this encompasses your diet, workout routine, relationships, career and overall happiness. I think a good sign that you’re doing it right is when you can enjoy a cheeseburger with your friends without feeling bad about it ;)

What has been an important lesson in your self-care/self-love journey?

Learning to love myself. Growing up, I had a difficult time with this. I thought that in order to be happy and successful, I have to be doing what everyone else around me is doing. This caused me to constantly compare and compete with others instead of doing things that would make me happy. It seeped into every aspect of my life and probably led to a lot of the bad relationships I’ve experienced. But luckily, I found yoga, which has been instrumental in helping me realize that by taking care of myself from the inside, I’m able to be a happier, more confident person on the outside. You must first love yourself before anyone else can love you, right?! I only wish someone had told me that 10 years ago.

What are your favorite ways to engage with your community in DC and beyond?

Instagram! A lot of people think the Instagram community is superficial with all our hashtags and inspirational quotes, but I’ve had such a great experience using it here in DC. Instagram has given me the most amazing excuse to connect with local businesses, places and people! My favorite part of running @capitalyogagirl is getting to know people in my community and forming lasting friendships through yoga poses. Hopefully, this is only the start!