This week Susannah delves into the diverse life of INC´s Rio de Janeiro-born Social Media Editor; former architect; designer; marketeer; childhood ballerina and now mother and yoga teacher, Giselle Rouvier.
How has your nomadic childhood in London, Toronto and various Brazilian cities shaped you?
Oh wow, I think it has shaped me in so many ways… For a very shy person like myself, I feel that moving around has given me the opportunity to come out of my shell. One thing I´ve realised is that being pushed out of my comfort zone can lead to growth and personal transformation from a very early age. I also feel that learning to adapt in various settings has make me more flexible, resilient and empathetic.
What´s the best advice you’ve been given?
Right now, as a Mother and solopreneur, I’d say it was “you can do anything but you can’t do everything.” So I´d say understanding that I need to make a choice about what my purpose is and what my focus is going to be has been a key lesson.
How has your previous career as an architect and designer helped you in your current profession as a yoga teacher?
As an architect-designer you get to be a bit of a psychologist and to understand how experiences and spaces can shape how a person will feel. I was very interested as an architect in how buildings and cities affect our moods and wellbeing and this has always fed through to how I teach Yoga. I really enjoy designing the entire class experience; the journey of the practice, the bhava or feeling I want you to leave the mat with, the music, the lighting…everything.
How has your hobby as a photographer evolved over the years?
My keen interest in photography started aged 12 when my father gave me my first camera. I used to take a lot of pictures of nature and I´ve had many moments in my life whereby I´ve considered becoming a full-time photographer. However, I´ve often doubted my talent for it. Photography for me is a way of stopping time dead in its tracks. It reminds me to stay in the present and to be fully aware of the beauty that surrounds us, be it nature, people we love, a kind gesture, a smile….it can be a really therapeutic activity.
What was the most surprising part of the menopause yoga course for instructors you took recently?
How early it can start and how unprepared we are for it! Also, that (peri) menopause can have a very profound impact on a woman’s life if completely ignored. I have heard tales of women who got divorced, lost their jobs and even started on antidepressants during this transition as they lacked valuable support from a doctor, naturopath, therapist or a yoga women’s circle to mitigate the symptoms. To some extent, it is still taboo, just like the menstrual cycles, to talk openly about these things. I would dearly love to change this narrative for women.
How do you advise people to reconnect with their bodies as they get older?
I love this idea that as we get older, we start to feel liberated from the pressures of how we should be, what we should do and we get back in touch with our inner wild authentic self. Like there is this wise, ancient inner-self waiting to emerge.
I would advise people to pay closer attention to our own body´s signals. Do less. Be more and breathe more. Follow your own path of creativity and intuition. Put your phone aside and move your body whether it be dancing or yoga, whatever takes your fancy.
How do you see the future of social media panning out?
I think it will take over our lives even more… it will become our search engine, our shopping experience, a place of work for lots of us.
You are INC´s social media editor, how do you use social media in your own life?
I use it only for work purposes, to get the information out there but on a personal level I have completely stopped using Social Media for 4 years now… I try to have a healthy relationship with it, as I felt that it could really “rob me” of my precious time here on this Earth and sometimes even affect my mood. I try as much as I can to not be glued to my phone when I am around my daughter so she can learn by example that we are social beings but we tend to feel better and healthier if the interactions are face to face and real.