Written by Selcen Kavruklar Editor-in-chief
Photos by Ella Gagiano, Ella Gagiano Studios
Changing habits and ways of thinking around our health is never easy, but when it comes to mood and well-being, we turned to Jennifer Sawyer, a passionate entrepreneur and founder of Obsidian Yoga. A new boutique yoga studio based in Northwest Las Vegas. Sawyer who felt her community lacked a space centered around wellness shares with us her path to healing through yoga and how it has helped her discover new dimensions of self-acceptance. Here is what she had to say.
Q: Can you tell us a little about your latest company launch Obsidian Yoga?
Obsidian Yoga is a Boutique Yoga Studio based in Las Vegas. There was nothing available in the Northwest. Everything was either in Summerlin, or Henderson and I felt the community lacked a space centered around wellness that was inviting to all. That is how Obsidian Yoga was born. I wanted to bring focus on the basics of yoga. Our philosophy is that yoga at its core is pure, boundless, infinite.
Q: How has yoga changed your life?
I started yoga fourteen years ago. I suffered from deep anxiety and depression and would take antidepressants to control my panic attacks. I was able to get off the antidepressants through practicing yoga. Yoga was life-changing for me. It allowed me to calm myself and control my thoughts.
Q: How do you handle stress and pressure?
I used to handle stress very poorly. After, I added yoga to my routine it helped me take a step back. It allowed me to have a different perspective on things. I was better able to manage my emotions. Wellness in general is very important for me. I am on a wellness journey. I recently started a Vegan diet, I do IV infusions, I use infrared beds, and listen to self-help audios all the time. There is no, one size fits all when it comes to combating stress.
Q: Do you meditate?
I do meditate. I focus on a vision or a word like, “I am worthy, I am loved.” This has allowed me to calm my thoughts. I know it takes time to be able to do this, it’s not easy. The mind is always thinking, but if you focus on just one thing it will help you get more centered.
Q: What makes Obsidian Yoga different in comparison to other yoga studios?
Our mission is to provide a simple yet transformative yoga experience. We are focused on getting back to the basics of yoga. We have a diverse group of yoga instructors. We keep it very simple at Obsidian Yoga. We want people to come in and feel welcome and be part of a community and enjoy their space on the mat. We have all different nationalities, sizes, older, and younger people that join our classes. Everyone is welcome and no one is judged!
Q: What does a typical day look like for you?
I get up in the morning and use my NovoTHOR infrared bed, it allows me to set my intentions for the day. I like to do a little self-care before I start my day and respond to emails, calls or look at my social media. Then I head over to the yoga studio and handle any meetings I have set for the day.
Q: What were some life challenges that you have overcome?
Being a single mom was a big challenge. I had to work two jobs to pay my bills and deal with my anxiety and depression at the same time. I have an amazing husband and have been married for five years. Living the life, I have now, I don’t have the monetary pressures I had before as a single mom. But I have come to realize that you still need to work on yourself and grow as person. Now, I am more focused on finding out what my purpose is here on earth.
Q: You are a firm believer in aging gracefully. Can you tell us a little about Grey & Glowing?
I embraced going grey when the pandemic first started. I made an intentional decision to let my her go grey. It was a life-changing experience for me. I don’t come from a family that believes in having grey hair. All my aunts, my grandmother and mother have always dyed their hair. I was tired of dying my hair, and the pandemic helped my journey of going grey.
Grey & Glowing came about when my girlfriend and hairstylist Cydney made me realize I had a great story to share. I have an amazing abundant life, a happy marriage and wanted to inspire other women to embrace their identity and find authentic happiness.
Women always ask me for advice on how to find true happiness. I feel like a lot of times people want to secure the bag for the wrong reasons. Your problems don’t go away when you have money. When you take money off the table, you will start to look at things in a deeper way. That is what I am going through right now and share on Grey & Glowing.
Q: What advice would you give to other women when it comes to embracing their identity?
Go for it! Love yourself! Embrace your own identity! Be confident! Just know you are perfect the way you are. Give yourself grace. We have a silver sister community where we all talk about our challenges. It is hard to undo the belief system that society has created for us as women, but remember you are doing this for you and nobody else. That’s my tagline for Grey & Glowing— Stay healthy, Stay glowing, Keep growing.
Q: What is your greatest strength?
No matter what life throws at me, I am going to keep going. I am going to keep growing and challenging myself to become a better person.
Q: Who was your biggest role model growing up?
My father has always been my role model. He started working at the age of thirteen. I remember when I was a child, he would go to school to get his masters and work at the same time to provide for us. He was a hard worker. He provided us with everything we needed and more. Now, it is my job to go to the next level and provide that for my children and grandchildren.
Q: Can you tell us a little about your latest podcast?
MJ, my social media manager had podcast called, ‘Life by You’ and was planning to relaunch it and asked if I wanted to cohost with her. MJ and I share a lot of the same values. She recently became an entrepreneur and I had guided her through the process. We talk about health, relationships, being married and changing our mindset. I have never done a podcast before. It has been an amazing journey. I try to be as transparent as possible and share my life experiences. I hope to inspire and motivate other women to live their best life— To design a life by them.
Q: As we start the new year, what are some positive affirmations you would like to make?
My first affirmation is to transcend to the highest and best version of myself. My second affirmation is my health. I am healthy. Health is something I always focus on. Your health is your biggest wealth!
For more information about Obsidian Yoga or to sign up for classes, please visit obsidianyogalv.com.