beyond luon toronto | 2013

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On June 18th at the Berkeley Church in Toronto, eight lululemon people shared how they are living a life they love beyond the luon walls. Leaving inspired, drunk on wonder and dwelling in serious possibility, Nicole Hudson shared her key takeaways from the event.

I had seen the trailer, I had read some blog posts, I really thought I knew what to expect. I was wrong. On June 18th, in the historically quaint Berkeley Church, beyond luon toronto happened, and I haven’t been the same since.

So what is luon, and why are we beyond it, you ask?

luon, my friends, is a fabric, and not just any fabric. With amazing four way stretch, this preshrunk fabric moves with you no matter what the pose (Vrschikasana, anyone?). Plus, it’s wicking, so please get sweaty. The high percentage of lycra will keep the nice shape, while the nylon gives the cottony feel...

Okay, you get the point. Sometimes at lululemon, we get so caught up in our sweet technical gear (rightfully so!) and hitting up our favourite yoga class that we forget about what’s going on beyond the walls of lululemon. Or we used to, until ‘beyond luon’ was born (Thank you Jacki, Steph and Cait for giving us such beautiful gift). Here are my Top FIVE Take-Aways from beyond luon Toronto.

1. Your life and your future are your choice.

After completing half of her science degree in Calgary, Vanessa decided to make one of the biggest life changing decisions and move away from home to pursue her Fashion degree in Toronto, and her life was forever changed.. She went from penciling in exam bubbles on scantrons to sketching naked men in art classes. One of the most important lessons she learned was when her mom said “You don’t have to do this.” From then Vanessa took control of her life and saw the power in choice.

2.Write your goals and vision down. But be prepared to laugh when you decide to read them later. 

Julie has admitted to be an avid goal setter (and major goal crusher), but she opened up about how not every goal she’s written down she has achieved. In particular, she has felt like some of personal goals have been the hardest to achieve. Her advice is to dig up all of your goals and visions so you can see where former you thought you’d be right now. For Julie, the answers were so different, she had to laugh. If her former visions had been true she’d be a yoga teacher, she’d be married, she wouldn’t be married, she’d have kids, she wouldn’t have kids... the list goes on. But in 10 years of goal setting (and I repeat, more goal crushing), Julie has taught us to trust our gut, and have faith that if it doesn’t feel like the right thing right now, if it’s meant to be it will come back. And she’s a testament to that truth, kicking butt at achieving goals and living her best life each and every day.

3. How will you leave your mark on this world?

Mars took the stage during the stage during the intermission and I have never heard such a soulful, stunning voice. She didn’t speak for long, but her words still stand with me today. She spoke about someone who inspires her, Neil deGrasse Tyson, an Astrophysicist who certainly helps us look at the bigger picture, and I mean bigger. In a world full of 7 billion people, on a plant with (potentially) about 5 billion years left, how will you be remembered?

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(True Story: I don’t like to think about space very much, because it is so vast and large I have trouble comprehending it all, and normally get freaked out).

Mars has helped put things into perspective. I really am a grain of sand in this big world, and I’d rather be the brightest, sharpest, most amazing grain of sand in the world than get washed down the stream.

4. Find your ‘Clouds of Inspiration’ (works best when said in a sexy accent)

Jonas defines ‘Clouds of Inspiration’ as the “framework for figuring out what you need to live a life you love.” If you looked up, what important values would be seen written in the clouds. For Jonas: Family, Travel, Personal Fitness, Technology, Design, Entrepreneurship, Sustainability. Jonas makes sure to consider each of these values in every big decision he makes - including the one where he gave up a six figure salary in the UK to pursue a business with a friend (to help in Canada. Now

Challenge: Draw your #cloudsofinspiration and post the picture on your favourite social network for Jonas to see! (and obviously use that hashtag)

5. The reward is the journey. There is possibility in every setback.

I wrote that down word for word in my notes from the event, and while I can’t remember if it came from a speaker specifically, the message still rings true for every one. My biggest take away from the event was that success isn’t always achieving the original goal, but often the willingness to change and grow with each setback. It seems as though this is recurring reminder or me as of late.

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After the event, I was chatting with my friend Holly, and she put it nicely: “The speakers weren’t self-made millionaires, they hadn’t faced any extreme disabilities or overcome depressingly destitute life situations - they were our contemporaries and they inspired us as listeners because we could relate and see ourselves in them.”

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Vanessa, Sam, Steph, Bianca, Mars, Jonas, Sara, Julie and Adele: Thank you. You words, your music, your vulnerability moved us into a place we never knew existed. A place of wonder and inspiration. Thank you for sharing.

Please share what’s happening in your life #beyondluon and stay up to date on where the event will be taking place next!


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I just wrote these down in my new running journal. Desperately looking for inspiration and enjoyed reading these — hopefully they help keep me moving. And hope you are still as inspired… Thanks! — JT

Comment by Julie — July 7, 2013 @ 9:20 pm

Why are you still using Luon, with all the quality issues?

Comment by Nil — July 9, 2013 @ 10:06 am

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