KACEE MUST | Founder of Citizen Yoga, Business Woman + Yoga Teacher | No. 21
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HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW.
“A trauma as a child is a need not being met. In that moment. You disconnect from yourself. You disconnect from your needs, your body, your mind, your intellect. So the answer to all trauma is reconnection. A reconnecting back to self.”
Kacee is the Founder of Citizen Yoga. She is an entrepreneur. A business woman. A Yoga Teacher. A student of Philosophy. Those are some of her labels. She's also been labeled skinny, intimidating, honest, and sensitive (too sensitive). However, like most of the people on the TELL YOUR STORY Pod, she is not defined by labels.
“There are very few labels that I overly identify with. I try to decide to be more than a label and to live my life in some ways more measured but also less reactive to what people place on me, and more proactive to who I want to be.”
In the suburbs of Detroit where Kacee and I grew up the community is small. Wo when someone amongst our peers makes a large impact, their name becomes household. Kacee is just that. Because she's built and is continuing building a successful business, but also because in the way she conducts her business, herself, and her interactions with anyone who comes in her door.
“Say Hello. The courage to look at somebody and say hello, to me, is so gratifying. Why. Can’t we do that more?”
Say Hello is a recent mantra for CY. It was created by the community but it stems from Kacee. In some ways, I assume that she would have benefited from the phrase during her darkest days. During her years at Northwestern, she suffered from depression. She later lost her sister to suicide. Afterwards, she embarked on a journey to India.
“I think I was running from my sister’s death and the loss of my family dynamic. I didn’t feel connected to anything so I was sort looking for the answer to why I was suffering. That would be a reason I left.”
Friends were flabbergasted by her desire to leave. But she felt she needed to find something. However, upon return, it felt like her void had not been filled.
“I think in my head I had a promise of deep transformation and actually it didn’t happen when I moved back home. That was sort of a bummer.
Kacee speaks openly about her suicidal thoughts, in fact, she speaks openly about the entirety of her story. Like me, she believes there are valuable lessons to be learned in our suffering which allow us the opportunity to share with and teach others.
I’ve had my own suicidal thoughts. Those are definitely apart of my story. Especially after college I had some serious suicidal thoughts. After I moved home from India, as well. I think that’s important for people to know. Because I don’t have that anymore. Truthfully. When you do the right work for an extended period of time. There’s no quick fix. Philosophy is not a quick fix. It takes time for it to sink in but we have to be patient enough to allow for all of those changes to occur.”
Although she claims that she is still a work in progress and there is much for her to learn, in my eyes, she is a more or less, complete person. Someone who is individually whole, grounded, still, at peace, and in wonderment of the world. From here arrive incredible pearls of wisdom, ones that if Oprah got her hands on, she'd shout "tweetable moment!"
“You can’t take a spiritual journey or a professional journey to get to the end of something. Cuz the end is the end. And then you’ve missed all the good parts. It’s a combination of looking forward to and having an ideal of but also learning how to extract what already exists. Like, what’s important about what already exists. It’s such a good balance.”
I'll let you listen. So beyond grateful for this amazing conversation. Thank you, Kacee.
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“The insanity of us is: in the beginning we’re so excited, in the middle we want it to be over, and at the end we cry about it being over. So there’s no enjoyment in the process itself. In some ways we think that enjoyment just occurs, or appreciation occurs. Appreciation is not a natural state for us. Appreciation is something you have to train yourself to feel. You have to learn how to extract it. It’s a faith thing too. See. You can’t see what’s to come. But if you know that you’re doing the right thing in the present moment then it’s going to happen. Then, once you get there, it will be like it never wasn’t. I think we just are a little impatient in our own process of wanting to be at the end. It’s the same thing with a partner. You long for a partner. You’re like, ‘I want to meet the man of my dreams’. And then you meet them and you’re like, ‘that’s all it took?’ And then you have them and you can’t remember a time without them. I think we just are a little impatient in our own process of wanting to be at the end.”
Dr. Gabor Mate on Tim Ferriss Podcast
Brene Brown on Belonging