Sometimes the Universe brings you into contact with beautiful souls that bring wise perspectives and a smile to your face. Araba is such a soul. Araba and I met in Accra, Ghana where we both returned to heal and reconnect with our heritage. Amongst many things, Araba is a healer, community builder, yogi, and wellness coach. I've had the opportunity of participating in her yoga class and Sister Healing Circle and left with a renewed sense of clarity, nourishment, and energy - Araba has that effect! I am grateful for her presence and to introduce her to the Flowers & Moondust community. Without further ado, here's Araba!
Introduce yourself. Who are you? What do you do? And why?
I'm Araba Ofori-Acquah and my purpose is to help people improve their wellbeing and realise their potential. I do this through lots of different channels - mainly by teaching yoga, coaching individuals and business owners, writing, and public speaking. Each of these channels I just mentioned were key in my personal development and healing journey. Without the practice of yoga, the guidance of my therapist (who I'm convinced was an angel), the relatability of other people's written stories and the motivation of hearing others speak on their experiences of poor mental health, I'm not sure where I'd be...but it definitely wouldn't be here, in this moment. That is why I do what I do - because, whether they were aware of it or not, others did it for me, and they saved my life.
What lead you back to the Motherland (Accra, Ghana)?
My journey of recovering from poor mental health helped me to release all these attachments and ideas I had about who I should be and the life I should lead. A beautiful side effect of that was that I began to connect more deeply to the true me - including my heritage and my culture. It was inevitable that this reconnection would eventually lead me home.
Everyone’s journey to/through wholistic wellness is different. Can you tell us more about your wellness journey? How did you get started as a yogi?
I've always been relatively active but more for competition than for wellness! In my teens / early twenties I was a competitive cheerleader and injured my knee. Up until that point, yoga had been something I mocked as just stretching and saying 'OM'. On the advice of my physio, I went to a Bikram yoga class and hated it. But something in me made me go back. And after a few more classes, I loved it! I was still very much in the competitive mindset though and decided that all other types of yoga were still boring. I fell in and out of my practice over time, usually depending on how busy I was. Until eventually I just stopped practising.
It was only after falling into a deep depression that I somehow found my way back to yoga. I was in no fit state to go to classes but my therapist encouraged me to do short sessions by myself at home. As I started to feel better, I recommitted to regular yoga practice. Everything else kind of just crept into my practice either through being introduced by my therapist, mentioned in a personal development book, or through some connection to yoga. A few years later and I'm a full-blown hippie, crystals and all :D
What are your go-to wellness routine(s) that bring you peace?
Though I'm a yoga teacher, I am more and more finding peace off the mat. I love visiting the beach and being taken in by the awesomeness of Yemaya, goddess of the seas. The scent of burning palo santo or sage instantly relaxes me. I also practice rituals at every new moon and full moon.
What is a warrior goddess? What’s one advice you can give women to help bring out their inner warrior goddess?
I see a warrior goddess as the perfect embodiment of the divine masculine and the divine feminine in the body of a powerful woman. The divine masculine in us is strong, powerful, and takes action. The divine feminine in us is the creative, nurturing element that directs that action. With the two in balance, we know what we want, why we want it, and exactly how to make it happen.
Women - you can connect to their inner warrior by releasing limiting beliefs and societal pressures, and standing in the knowledge that there is literally nobody in this world like you, and that is your power. You can connect to your inner goddess by remembering that you cannot pour from an empty cup - in order to give to others you must first give to yourself. So be honest with yourself about your needs and be unapologetic about going after them.
How can people get in touch and work with you?
I currently offer a blend of yoga, meditation, energy work, and coaching to both groups and individuals, as well as running retreats. You can stay up to date with my latest offerings and get in touch via Instagram.