Welcome to my newest series, This Is Me! To read other posts in this series, click here. If you want to be involved, please email me for more details! Today, learn more about Kayla Goebel, someone I met back in high school when we both on our school newspaper staff!
Kayla recently started her own gym called Strong Roots, which focuses on movement for every single body. She’s been a big inspiration to me personally as I’ve seen her talking on Facebook and Instagram about her journey with body confidence and self-love and everything like that in recent years. She is so real and unapologetically herself, and I really love that about her. Visit her personal Instagram, business Instagram, business Facebook page and her website, and let her know you saw her post here!
This Is Me: Kayla Goebel
Share a little about yourself, your background and what you’re doing now.
Where to start? I live in West Fargo, ND with my 7 year old daughter, Aurora, my Lumber Jack husband of 10 years, David, our 2 dopey dogs and various roommates. 😀 I went to school for Graphic Design at MSCTC and currently work as a graphic designer for PRx Performance. It’s hard for me to say, but I also own a gym called Strong Roots in West Fargo. Our focus is movement for every. single. body. I started doing CrossFit over 4 years ago and found self-confidence and empowerment through that methodology, so I ventured out on my own to find people, especially women, who have gym anxiety or fear of athletics of any type because of the wonky society we have.
Have you discovered your life purpose, and is that important to you? What motivates you in your life?
It seems like I have really discovered and embraced what I was born for in the last few years. I LOVE loving people, and I was born with a gift to do it well. I love seeing people, hearing their stories and appreciating and really feeling for them. It’s hard work emotionally, but it’s something I am finding that I am good at. Starting Strong Roots has been a huge part of embracing that and having a vehicle to do so. It’s just always the way I have lived my life, to the best of my human abilities. It’s important to me to make sure people feel heard and seen. Sometimes that means sitting and having coffee with them, or delivering them some flowers or caffeine. Some days that means giving them a cheap place to live or providing them with resources to cover their basic needs. I have been abundantly lucky in my life, for whatever reason, and I try to be giving with those gifts.
Thinking about your life now, is it what you always imagined you’d be doing? Why or why not, and what have you learned because of that?
Dear Lord, no. Never did I ever think I would own a gym that was doing well. I never wanted to own a business, never thought I could do it and do it well. First of all, I have always loved sports but was never good at anything with movement. I have also always been a ‘big’ girl, and I believed society when they said that I couldn’t ever embrace that fitness culture. There’s so many reasons why I never thought I could own a business, especially a fitness-related business. I also never thought I would be in a marriage that has spent a large portion of it’s time struggling and limping along. No one prepares you for how hard that can be and the toll it can take on you emotionally and mentally. It may seem weird but I bring it up for that exact reason… I don’t think I am the only one and it needs to be ok to talk about it. It’s hard to say what the biggest lessons learned have been. Adjustment of my own expectations would probably be a good place to start. 🙂 Lots of this also revolves around limiting beliefs, a scarcity mindset, and not seeing my own worth or what I can bring to the table. These things started to change 4 years ago when I started to gain confidence in myself and who I am as a person, and they continue to grow as I challenge and push myself to do so.
What’s something you desperately want other people to know or realize that may help them in their lives?
Dang. Such great questions. This is silly but also will hopefully help explain what I mean. Lizzo sings in one of her songs, “If I’m shining everybody gonna shine.” What does that mean? If we show up as our best selves, if we shine, then that gives everyone else the opportunity to shine, to show up as their best selves. You are good enough as you are and so worth shining, not just because you need to do it for yourself, but imagine what that does for those around you. It’s a tragedy to keep your shine from others because you are keeping a gift from others to be themselves as well.
When we encounter challenges in our lives, we can choose to run from them or to them. What have you learned from either of those ways of thinking in your own life?
Nothing positive has been gained from sweeping things under the rug. We learn that as kids the first time we get in trouble for lying. The consequences of avoiding the hard thing are far worse than if we face it. Yet it is so easy to take into consideration what other people will think or how they will react, so we sweep it under the rug, knowing it won’t be the best answer. And sometimes it might work out. But eventually, that shit has to get cleaned up… and it will come out. It’s never easy to face things head-on, and life can hand us really heavy challenges, loss, abuse, broken relationships, mental illness, physical illness, the list can go on. When we run from things, we are choosing a victim mentality that will keep us down longer than if we do the hard work to face the hard things.
What do belonging and connection mean to you, and how do you incorporate that into your life and/or business?
As a child I always felt like I didn’t just quite fit in anywhere. I had lots of friends or made friends easily, but couldn’t find myself fitting into a mold. There were all these groups or descriptors that I could relate to, but nothing was just right. Even in my adult years, through church small groups, my journey in corporate structure jobs and the fitness world, what I was has always felt like I was too much or not enough for everyone. Needless to say, it’s incredibly important to me that people feel a connection and belonging when they are with me. It’s part of that ‘hearing and seeing’ people where they are and not just accepting them right there but loving them. The way I relate to people, listen to people and show up for people are a few of the ways that I show people that connection is important to me and inherently, to my business.
How have self-care and self-love played a part in your journey so far?
I would not be where I am today had I not started to take self-love and self-care seriously. It’s important to recognize self-care as not just a glass of wine and some Parks & Rec. Self-care is looking in the mirror at your faults, your trauma, your history, and addressing the ways you have been hurt and the ways you turn and hurt others because of that hurt. It’s therapy, apologies, personal development books, working out, crucial conversations, boundaries and lots of other things that take a lot of mental and emotional dedication. After years of working on those types of self-care, I love myself so much more now than I did years ago. But it didn’t just happen, I have busted my ass to get here and I won’t go back. I’ll keep busting ass, because I am worth it.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I am a terrible writer 😛
Photo courtesy of Kayla Goebel