Aree Khodai - What Makes Me FLAWSOME

Posted on 22 March 2015

Photo by Carbon 38 by Maggie Zulovic

Aree is an amazing and inspiring woman and we are proud to call her a Vie Active ambassador. We caught up with her after a killer yoga session to find out more about Aree's thoughts on being FLAWSOME.

What makes you FLAWSOME? 
You only live up to the standards you set so having high standards but also being such an outspoken person having such strong opinions and beliefs. It is a great asset and very liberating. it is either well received or not at all. My boss one time told me I am either a 5 star person or 1 star. How people and the world reacts to me is very polarized but that's what makes me successful because of no tolerance of mediocrity. There is no middle ground with me. I am more than ok with the people who do give me 1 star because the way I look at it is that I must have triggered something to bring out such a reaction so to me I have evoked emotion even if it may not be positive on the outside.   

What is one of the hardest obstacles you’ve had to overcome and how did you overcome it?
I grew up with awful asthma and as an active child and individual, that really isn't very easy physically, emotionally and mentally... I was very competitive and sports were really important for me mostly because it was my social life and time to bond or connect with others. If I either played during sports time or at recess or even when I would talk and laugh I would automatically be sent to the hospital to be treated on a breathalyzer machine for having such bad asthma, gasping for air. My poor mom used to stay awake all night to make sure I was breathing through the night. It was rough especially watching my friends from the side lines when I knew I could be running faster or kicking the ball to score our team a goal.... One summer I was so determined that I just kept risking asthma attacks but I ran a little bit further each day by the end of the summer somehow I had been able to run miles in the hot sun and becoming captain of my cross country team. I had learned to breathe properly thus strengthening my lungs and not having to depend on inhalers etc.... I had outgrown my asthma and to this day I rarely get an attack unless I am sick or in extreme weather conditions. This achievement helped my physical but also mental health and wellness which has set the tone in every aspect in my life: that hard work, passion, mind over matter, and persistence will pay off. I don't take short cuts to get what I want, I don't take no for an answer, I am not led by fear or self doubt, and I have the willingness to make the impossible become possible.

What has been your great success?
Having the power to speak my truth and living life more authentically regardless of the cultural, family, gender  and social pressures and expectations that exist everyday. Owning who I am, what I want , how I feel, having a voice etc...

What is your greatest fear? 
Not having a sense of self - to not evolve

What do you still want to accomplish?
I feel that at this moment in my life I have experienced success in different career paths and I want to continue to grow and expand this revolution of yoga I started with #AreesArmy but what my number 1 goal is in the matters of the heart to connect with a partner that I could have that sense of grounding, coming home to someone, and build a family unit with.

Who is your ‘FLAWSOME’ inspiration? 
So many strong successful independent however soft and real women in my life:True feminine Goddesses who have impact include:

  • My Mom - who instilled that sense of high standard and is the definition of sacrifice.
  •  Janet Crown - She is one of the most balanced women I know in every aspect of her life she is a mentor as a friend, as a teacher, student, career-woman, wife, mother, philanthropist she is beautiful inside and out.
  • My aunties and Suzie brown - who not only lead by example of making things happen in their own life but also the value of unconditional love and support always.

How has living an active life empowered you and made you who you are today?

From overcoming my asthma my life was forever changed by the sense of owning my inner power and since yoga having the ability of owning, speaking and living from my truth but maintaining a sense of sweetness and softness letting go of the "chip on my shoulder" and having to be such a hard ass to be respected. As a teacher now, I get to also witness students who come in willing to work being persistent and seeing them evolve and be empowered to live a life they didn't think was possible.
To find out more about Aree head to her Instagram Page @revolutionaree

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