Interview with Ashley Limehouse - yoga + mindfulness leader, mum and co-founder of "Brown Girl Talk"
Ashley is a Yoga, mindfulness, mental health leader and a advocate for many things but mostly the mental health in women of color. Helping to navigate life by sharing tips and techniques to support women as they create room for healing, growth, change. Banishing toxic habits, by incorporating different healing modalities for a cohesive, coherent connection to the mind, body and spirit. She works to write new stories by implementing the work to create new legacies together.
Born and raised in Charleston, SC. She is a 200RYT with over 100 additional hours in Yin + Meditation. She also works as the wellness director for a nonprofit who helps elevate entrepreneurs throughout Africa, by providing sustainable jobs. Recently she has co founded a community “Brown Girl Talk” a social collective platform that creates space for healing and celebration for Women across the African diaspora.
If she isn’t teaching yoga at her local studio, you can find her on the beach with her five year old son Ashton, working in the community, or traveling, exploring all the places this beautiful world has offered us.
Sarah Kukie: Tell me about yourself at twelve years old? What dreams did you have? What challenges were you facing?
Ashley Limehouse: At the the age of twelve I was lost and found in life,in sports. I was an athlete from a very young age, basketball, volleyball, track and field. I experienced a lot growing up, some conflicting and nourishing. All in all my ultimate dream was to be like my mom. Strong, beautiful, resilient.
SK: How different is that from where you are now?
AL: I look at it as an evolution of course, my life’s course. That particular time, was who I was meant to be, so that I can be sure of who I am today. Today I am a student of life, visionary, leader, a bird that is no longer confined to my beliefs, I had then. I am all of these things and none of them.
SK: What was one of your most defining moments in life?
AL: I’m not sure there is one particular moment , just when I think I know something I realize that I know nothing. Life is like that. There’s so much there. So much to take in, so much to learn. I guess my defining moment was the moment I realized how important it was to do the inner work to figure out who I was first, in order to cultivate the life/world I want to live in. I am still working on that.
SK: I largely believe in designing every aspect of one’s life to the best of their ability. What steps do you take to ensure that you live your ideal kind of lifestyle?
AL: Back to [the previous] question, I work on my consciousness, awareness, connection to my roots, to my community, to the world. My ideal lifestyle is living with purpose, on purpose. I surround myself with people that inspire and push me to be best version of myself, people that hold me accountable, people that show up authentically, wholeheartedly in life.
SK: Do you have a morning/evening routine or ritual?
AL: My morning ritual or routine starts at night, a good nights rest sets my up for a good Morning, I also process what I have to do the next day, sometimes that may be creating a mental list. I’ll usually have a few herbal teas in rotation to help with my rest. As far as morning goes I try to wake up and get moving by 6:00am. Years ago I read an article about CEOs routines, one of them was to wake up early. Getting up early allows me time before my son wakes to have coffee, write, collect my thoughts and meditate usually. But life is life and sometimes my morning looks like rolling out of bed, falling on the floor from my alarm, coffee in the car and getting stuck in traffic. Time is great, if I can manage lol.
SK: What’s one habit you had to shred in order to proposer? What habits did you have to adopt?
AL: Self-doubt, I exchanged it for compassion and grace towards myself.
SK: What accomplishment do you feel most proud of so far in your life? Why?
AL: I am most proud of, not giving up on myself. Building resilience. Loving what I do and to truly be of service for other women to find that thing they love and do the same.
SK: One of the most common things people, including myself, face daily is impostor syndrome- suffering from chronic self-doubt and a sense of intellectual fraudulence that override any feelings of success. Have you had this? How do you deal with it?
AL: Yes, this is common and I think we have all faced it at one point in our lives. I believe it’s important that we are reminded that we all equally belong here. We have purpose. That none of our lives will be identical, what is for us will definitely come. Try to live of the rhythm and flow of your own life, not concern about someone else’s flow, because that is their path and journey. But to work on the continuous growth within ourselves by aligning our thoughts, actions with our desires and surly nothing can or will stop what is meant for you because again it is for you. What’s for them is for them.
SK: We have now started a whole new decade and, thank goodness, people are more aware of their power and the importance of intention. I’m curious, what’s your word for the year? What’s the intention behind it?
AL: My word was and is “Expansiveness” to expand my mind, my heart, my doings, to move out of my own way, to receive life’s offerings
SK: Any big plans for 2020?
AL: I just started BGT collective with a partner so will continue to intentionally work on that, travel, learn. Be a student. I don’t normally set goals, I don’t want to limit myself.
SK: Do you often reward yourself after an accomplishment?
AL: I wouldn’t say reward myself, I acknowledge the moment successful or not and I move forward. None of it defines life for me. I feel if we reward ourselves for what others define as “successful” then we are saying the “unsuccessful” things wasn’t useful or a part of the growth or next step. It all matters, so my reward is to love myself and trust no matter the outcome. For me they are all moments in time that hopefully creates more moments that shows how amazing women truly are.
SK: If you could only keep five possessions, what would they be?
AL: Oh that’s funny! Lol I would say, a pic of my son, a book, yoga mat, my blanket, and my brain haha. I don’t know. How do people answer these things lol! Things are just that things, none of this matters in the end
SK: How do you normally spend your free time?
AL: What is free time?! Haha anyone that knows me knows that I’m usually full with life! But I just try to create mini moments in my day, say when I’m eating, I eat and enjoy my food with gratitude and try to apply the “do not disturb” on life for the moment and just be. When I’m traveling is usually the most free time I have and usually when I write, do cooking classes, spa etc.
SK: What would you tell twelve year old you, now that you’ve got all this knowledge through growth and experience?
AL: I would tell her to be patient, in time everything will change and change again. You will live 1,000 lives. Thanks to impermanence everything is possible, and nothing is forever.
SK: One piece of advice that you live by…
AL: Life is fragile. The only moment we have is this very moment, so this is the right time, RIGHT NOW, to love, to do, to believe, to breath, to live. So be who you truly are and share your true self, an offerings to the world. I need you. The world needs you. Go be great!
Thank you Ashley, for sharing a bit of yourself with us. ❤💕