Cool People, Cool Thoughts 4/24/2017: Chessa Bianconi

Hi everyone,

I’d love to introduce you all to my bff, Chessa Bianconi. For the past four years here at school, she’s been the soul that’s stood with me through all that is life and all that is college. This might sound like I’m writing about my fiance, but hey. Chessa’s the kind of girl who deals in loveliness and who’s usually thinking for others. In a few months, she’ll being flying over to Sacramento for a service program where she’ll be working with people who have suffered from homelessness. (check out her fundraising page here)

Chessa has also been working her butt off to become a certified yoga instructor, something that she’s wanted to do for a while and something that I find both amazing and inspiring.

Here’s some cool things she has to say about yoga, life, and love:

chessablog_3

I’m honored to be here, sharing a little snippet of my story on my best friend’s blog. I’m a senior at the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in Psychology and Urban Studies. This semester I’ve also decided to embark on a 5 month journey to becoming a certified yoga instructor.

Mostly people ask how I got into yoga. I began to become more serious my sophomore year, doing 30 day challenge led by a yogi who regularly posts classes on You-tube, Adrienne Mishler (aka Yoga with Adrienne). She was funny and made the practice approachable.

ChessaNot only did I notice some physical changes in my body, but I was learning to join my breath and movements. It’s really revolutionary once you are able to find some meditative points throughout the practice. In the beginning it was just snippets—in child’s pose or in mountain pose. But as I kept practicing, I found my breath linking to my movement more and more—and I found my anxiety and stress levels decreasing.

Three years later, as I’m finishing out the training, I’m realizing how much doing yoga and becoming a teacher has taught me about myself. How to let go. Leaning tools to be present and non-judgmental. Becoming ok with discomfort. How supportive and loving a yoga community can be.

My hopes for the future are to continue growing my practice as a student and teacher. I chessablog_2
hope that we can continue widening the horizons of who “should” do yoga, from a one
demographic and body type to everyone and anyone who feels they want to try. I hope to be a teacher that allows this practice, which has changed my life, to be accessible to anyone. For now, I am embarking on a year of service with Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Sacramento. I know this next step will only continue teaching me more about the world and myself. And maybe spread some love through teaching yoga.

 

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