Find your Flow with Danielle Cuccio
When we think of a Spiritual Gangster, we think of someone who goes after their dreams with their whole hearts. Someone who believes in their unique voice and vision, and mindfully follows their soul's creative purpose. Meet Spiritual Gangster Danielle Cuccio, yoga teacher, blogger, dancer, business woman, and all over awesome human being. We spent the day with her and talked all things yoga, LA, and going after your dreams.
You’re a lifestyle and health blogger, yoga teacher, and just started your own natural skincare and yoga line. What has motivated you to create all your dreams into a reality?
I have always been a firm believer in setting an intention and making it come true. I wanted to attend UCLA for college and I did. I wanted to become an Esthetician so I did. I wanted to become a Registered Yoga Teacher, so I did. I set my mind to something, make an intention and go with it. Every time I’m in Savasana (term for all you yogis out there), I have this vision of me owning my own brand and living in Malibu with my husband and one-day children (no kids yet!). :) I feel that our dreams are what gives our life color and LIFE. It’s what makes my heart happy and I go after them with all my energy.
What’s on your yoga booty ballet playlist right now?
Oh my! SO MANY GOOD SONGS! A few I’m loving: This Is What You Came For by Calvin Harris and Rihanna, Say It by Flume and Tove Lo, Final Song by MO and Can’t Stop The Feeling by Justin Timberlake. Makes me want to moove!
How do yoga and dance flow together?
Vinyasa Yoga is so much like dance! I danced my entire life so I love that I can incorporate dance into my career. I usually practice and teach yoga to music so I get to breathe and practice to a rhythm and feel the music while moving from pose to pose. There is nothing like it. I try to practice daily.. even if it’s just a few stretches at my house. I put on a song and just flow. It makes a huge difference in my day and week.
How do you practice being mindful in your daily life?
I try to hop into a yoga class at least 3 times a week! I also do my best to meditate every single day - even if it’s just for 5 minutes. I sit in my meditation room (sometimes my bed), close my eyes, focus on my breath and things automatically start to fall into place. Things that I was overwhelmed by or stressed about at work, tend to go away and I feel so much better after. I usually have some of my best business innovations while meditating!
Tell us more about Cuccio Somatology?
I have always had an interest in skin care. After growing up with not the greatest skin, I wanted to help more people achieve beautiful skin they wouldn’t feel ashamed of. I went to beauty school and got my Aesthetician license. I started to practice yoga at the same time, got certified as an instructor and realized that Yogis had the answer to true beauty. It wasn’t a topical solution. It came from the inside-out. It was about living a holistic lifestyle of eating well, drinking enough water, sleeping 7-8 hours a night, practicing yoga or some type of exercise, practicing positive thinking and meditation. You couldn’t ignore one aspect. So many of my skincare clients would come to me for a quick fix, but it was so much more than that. Cuccio is my last name and Somatology is the “the study of the body”. I went to UCLA and studied Women’s Studies, Anatomy, Nutrition and Business. Anything I could get my hands on health related - I was reading up on it. I wanted to take everything I had learned into one brand. Cuccio Somatology is your go-to for all healthy living tips and products. We are currently focused on a healthy yoga/fit lifestyle and are extending the brand to skincare, vitamins, beauty products and more. We have the best Yoga Mat Cleaner on the market - Elle Magazine just did an article about how dirty our yoga mats get - it’s so gross! My students kept asking me how to clean their yoga mats. Next thing I knew, the brand was born. We took 2 years to formulate our Yoga Mat Sani Spray Cleanser with our chemist in Huntington Beach, CA. We love our mat cleaner! Our products are now sold at Yogaworks and studios nationwide. Yogis carry our oil and lotion in their bag for before and after yoga to enhance their yoga experience.
What is your favorite post-yoga snack?
An apple with almond butter!!!! Is it snack time yet?! I love snacks/need to eat every few hours to keep my energy up in between clients and meetings! I usually have homemade popcorn with coconut oil…almost every night. 100% guilty and admitting that to the world right now!
How do you raise your vibration each day?
It’s not always easy. But I definitely make an effort to stay positive. Usually when I’m positive, things happen much more effortlessly and smoothly. Good things come when you have a positive outlook. I try to be grateful for the life I live - I am truly so lucky to be doing what I love and spreading my passion of yoga and healthy living to more and more people each day. I do my best to smile and stay happy no matter what.
What’s your favorite LA spot to get centered and grounded?
I love Swerve Studio in West Hollywood - I teach there 3 times a week - Yoga Booty Ballet and Yoga. I love the community - there’s nothing else like it in L.A. I love seeing all my students weekly who are there to work out and feel good. We play good music and work it out together. Nothing better than that. I also hop into a yoga class once a week at CorePower Yoga Hollywood. I need my yoga time too.
What is your favorite mantra?
“Stay strong, but calm”. - As a CEO of a brand and a yoga instructor, I have to play the leader but also stay calm while making big decisions and teaching. It’s a balance between the two and I try to remember to keep things light and happy, but also stand strong and focused on the goal. This can be applied to yoga too - being strong and calm while doing yoga asanas, even and most especially when the pose gets really hard. That is the moment you have to tap into your inner strength and inner calmness.
What does being a Spiritual Gangster mean to you?
It means being a STRONG BADASS LADY! That can have fun and is also connected to who she is. She owns who she is and goes after her dreams fearlessly. I love being a SPIRITUAL GANGSTER.