Kim Gingras Image by: Wes Klain
"I’ll never have six-pack abs, I have bad feet for a dancer and I’m not super flexible. I’m always told that my hair pops too much on stage and my skin is too fair. But that’s me."
Kim Gingras did the unthinkable the day she said "no" to her boss, Beyoncé. The 31-year-old professional dancer has been living her best life hair-flipping and chassé-ing alongside the Lemonade singer since 2013, but last year, Kim walked away from The Formation World Tour to launch her dance company, You Got This, Girl! (YGTG). Sitting in a quaint café in her hometown of Montreal, the L.A.-based rousse assures me that "it was a difficult decision," but that "Bey" had her back. “She gave me all her love and her blessing and told me I was doing the right thing.”
From left to right: You Got This, Girl! co-founders Kim Gingras and Mel Mah. Image by: Wes Klain
Of course, You Got This, Girl! – which Kim co-founded with Canadian dancer Mel Mah – is not your typical dance company. Each workshop focuses on self-reflection and building confidence in women struggling with low self-esteem through meditative yoga, strutting exercises and facing your demons in the mirror. “The lack of confidence in the everyday woman is so crazy. YGTG is about addressing those insecurities and encouraging positive thoughts and attitudes,” says Gingras. “We should just go for what we want instead of questioning whether we’re good enough, pretty enough or thin enough. Let’s focus on strengthening our minds and our spirits.”
Here’s how to take your self-esteem to Sasha-Fierce levels.
1) STOP AND TAKE A MOMENT TO CHECK-IN WITH YOURSELF EVERY SINGLE DAY
"Meditate for 15 minutes a day, whether it’s taking a moment of silence in your room, hiking in nature or going for a walk. It’s about disconnecting from the world and being aware about what you’re thinking and feeling. We all have that voice inside us that tells us that we’re too fat, too ugly and not good enough. You have to train your brain to filter that negativity out and focus on positive affirmations.”
2) OWN YOUR IMPERFECTIONS
“I’ll never have six-pack abs, I have bad feet for a dancer and I’m not super flexible. I’m always told that my hair pops too much on stage and my skin is too fair. But that’s me. It’s not about making people believe that I’m amazing and the most beautiful. Flaws and all, I actually have to believe it, because if I don’t, why should others?”
3) TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY BUT DON’T OBSESS ABOUT IT
Kim Gingras' 15-minute ab workout.
“My goal isn't to get down to a certain weight or to have zero fat on my body. I love food way too much to give it up. Eating really makes me happy. I work out so that my body feels right and I'll put the right energy into it, but it’s not about obsessing over a specific result and denying myself in the process. That’s not healthy.”
4) TAKE RISKS BECAUSE YOU HAVE NOTHING TO LOSE AND EVERYTHING TO GAIN
“When I first got to L.A., I crashed the music video audition for Nicole Scherzinger’s “Right There.” My agent told me not to go because I didn’t fit the ethnically-ambiguous look they wanted, but I didn’t let that stop me. I thought, "Maybe I'll get cut because I’m clearly white," but did I have to lose? Had I not taken that risk, I wouldn’t have booked the job that propelled my career."
5) NO DOESN’T MEAN THE END
“As much as it hurts when you hear the word no, the universe never gives you anything you can’t handle. There’s always a moment of sadness at first, but I’m a strong believer in energies and attracting what you’re feeling. If you drown yourself in a pity party for days or weeks, what are you attracting right then and there? “No” doesn’t mean, “No, this is the end.” It means, “No, but you’re one step closer.”"
6) DON’T LIVE FOR THE ‘GRAM
“If you’re defining your worth by the amount of likes your photos gets on Instagram or the number of followers that you have, you have to take a good look at why you value the opinion of strangers and then acknowledge your own insecurities. It’s important to know that what you’re watching and seeing on social media has been filtered. It’s not real life.”
7) HAVE A STRONG SUPPORT SYSTEM
“Be picky about who you surround yourself with because you’re giving your energy, and your energy is precious. You need people that motivate you, uplift you and challenge you on the daily."
8) BE KIND TO YOUR HATERS
“When a woman is talking-trash behind my back, I don't want to give her the power to ruin my day. I'm not the problem. Maybe she's lacking confidence or is going through something, so I try to show her empathy in hopes that I can touch her in a positive way.”
9) POSITIVITY IS EVERYTHING
“Sometimes I’ll wake up in the morning and start laughing for no reason. It sounds cheesy, I know, but I’m building and lifting my frequency so that beautiful things will come by way. The people around you will notice and be attracted to that positive energy."
10) DON’T SETTLE BECAUSE YOU’RE BETTER THAN THAT
“I turned down a huge job because I wasn't going to get paid. I know how attractive the experience can be, but it’s like, where does that end? I’ve worked so hard for so many years to just be taken advantage of. You have to know your worth and that it’s okay to say no to this or that. Trust that bigger and better opportunities will come. I booked the Super Bowl with Beyoncé in 2013 shortly after that.”