WIW Interview with Chenelle Monique, Professional Dancer & Dance Captain @ KNGRY
Can you tell us more about yourself and share your journey to wellness?
Hey!!! I'm Chenelle. I am a mother of 2, a professional dancer, choreographer, actress, master trainer and wellness coach. I am the dance captain over at KNRGY and head of method development. We started out 2020 on tour with Oprah Winfrey and are currently on tour with Tony Robbins, bringing movement and wellness digitally to his global virtual events! I have always loved healthy food and movement! I was the kid who would rather eat salad than pizza and was constantly twirling, jumping, running and making up dances. Throughout my childhood, I was faced with some pretty intense trauma; and over time, I learned very unhealthy ways of coping. I turned to drugs, sex, alcohol and unhealthy foods for comfort and numbing. By the time I was 17, I had been diagnosed with anxiety, depression, and two different forms of cancer. After 27 surgeries, multiple mental health exams, too many prescriptions, and lots and lots of therapy later I decided enough was enough. I knew there had to be a better way than cutting up and over medicating my beautiful and precious body. I was ready to take my life back and face my challenges one by one. For me that started with food. I began feeding my body like I loved it. I began researching holistic remedies that fed my healthy cells. I dove deep into ancient traditions like yoga, Ayurveda, herbalism and Chinese Medicine. I used nutrient dense foods, herbs and essential oils to take care of my physical body and nurture my health rather than mask my disease. I began my journey with meditation, breath work and self development. I claimed ownership over the new lease on my life and was determined to dive inward and heal myself. Fast forward a decade and I am more empowered than ever, living the life of my dreams, with a beautiful family and armed with education and tools I get to use every single day to serve the people around me and guide them back to their highest vitality.
When it comes to health and wellness, tell us more about the important work you're doing?
It is an honor every single day to serve the world with the gifts I have been given. In my own personal work with my clients as a coach, mentor, and educator. As an artist and choreographer through the power of storytelling. In my work with KINRGY and all of the beautiful communities we get to collaborate with. It is my mission to use every single day of my life to remind people just how brilliant, resilient and truly magical they are. I have seen first hand just how much a human body can endure. I believe in the intelligence of our being and that we are meant to thrive in harmony with nature. I believe that all of the answers lie within, and if we are willing to dive deep into our traumas and shine the light of love into our darkest places that we can endure all things and come out stronger than we ever believed possible. I believe every being comes to this planet with a special mission, and it is my greatest wish to connect people back to their true purpose. By connecting people back to themselves, through intentional eating, breath work, meditation, movement and energetics we can collectively push the boundaries of human evolution and choose to THRIVE. I love to imagine what the world would look like if EVERY being were fully activated, fully alive, truly authentic in their purpose, and living from a place of their highest possible vitality.
Can you share the most interesting story that has happened to you along the way?
One of the experiences I have had that has been the most impactful on my journey was while I was living in India in 2011. I was living in southern India on a humanitarian mission in Chennai. It was a medical and service mission in the leprosy colonies surrounding the city. We were living on the grounds of the school that had been created for the children in the colonies and the house mothers would make us three meals a day. I was in heaven with all of the fresh chutneys, iddli, dosa and kitchari. What I didn't know at the time was that every day I was practicing and learning the basics of Ayurveda. Everyone in the village spoke Tamil so we communicated mostly through smiles and head nods. We did yoga with the children every day during school and morning noon and night we would see the beauty of Ayurveda practiced through meals and medicine. I later learned to put names and labels to all that I had experienced as I dove deeper into my study of Ayurveda upon returning home. This has been the lens that has shaped much of my further education in the nutritional sciences and the way I have practiced as a nutritionist, personal trainer and wellness coach.
Wellness can mean so many different things to so many different people, what does it mean to you?
Wellness means sooo many things to me. In my own personal journey it means taking the time to look at the whole picture. It's not just about the food you eat, but also about your mental health, your physical health, your stress levels, your passion, your creativity, your overall vitality and quality of your life. As a leader in the wellness space it means constantly furthering my knowledge and experience so that I can be at the forefront of modern science and simultaneously connected to proven practices in ancient wisdom. I believe we are meant to thrive and by being more intentional, accountable and proactive in our every day choices, especially the little ones, we can create a life filled with ease, grace, joy and vitality.
Can you share your top 3 wellness hacks that you believe will support people's journey towards happiness and greater well being?
- Start every single day with a glass of warm lemon water. Just trust.
- Move your body. every single day. you can wiggle you can dance you can run you can stomp you can crawl, you can lift heavy things over and over, I don't even care what you do... but you gotta MOVE.
- Therapy. All kinds, if sitting on a couch talking about your problems isn't your thing, try yoga, try a sound bath, try a medicine woman, try acupuncture. Try anything... but keep trying until you find what makes you light up inside and fall in love with the parts of yourself you've been hiding. It's worth it.
Where can we find you?
All Social Media Platforms: @ChenelleMonique