Avoiding Your Passions? It May be Because of These Soul-Sucking Lies

Do you have big dreams? A million dollar idea you’re sitting on? A passion project you’ve been keeping tucked away, safe in your heart?

I know I do.

And I don’t know about you, but I’ve been aching my entire life to profit from my passions.

I love yoga. I love writing. I love making pretty things. I love transformation and powerful conversations. Most of all, I love to create.

It’s been the dream of my life to have a creative (location-independent) career that supports my family, supports others in doing meaningful work, and makes a difference in the world. (I’m living that dream right now. #grateful).

Passion (and service and beauty in all its forms) guides my career choices. I listen to my intuition when it comes to creating (my passion), sharing and supporting others. Because Creating – in all it’s forms – really is the great work of my life.

And I believe…

Wake Up Quote Paul Valery
For many years, I told myself this one soul-sucking lie: “it’s not the right time.”

Closely followed by this lie: “If you just do / achieve / finish this, THEN you can follow your heart.”

Fast-forward to present day: my beliefs (and behaviors) have shifted.

Here’s what I believe (and do) instead:

First, I no longer sacrifice my future dreams on the altar of the present.

I take measured, intentional steps towards life and business transformation. Yea, transformation is messy, growth is uncomfortable and business is a challenge. Oh, and being a mamapreneur? EVEN F*CKING HARDER. I know it. I own it. And I put my Big Girl Panties on and SHOW UP because…

Second, I no longer believe that there is a “right time” to follow your heart.

The right time is ALWAYS NOW. And I want my daughter to know that, deep in her bones – so she won’t waste as much time as I did. Because…

Third, being in a passion+purpose-fueled business is WORTH IT ALL.

I have the best job in the world: I help people, just like you, design a business that aligns personality, purpose and passion for yoga. I wake up every morning excited to go to “work” and filled with ideas for profitable workshops, courses, trainings and retreats. I get a huge thrill in others’ creative successes. I get to make art for fun. I get to travel, teach, learn and most importantly – I get to create.

All that? That’s my dream come true.

And yes, it’s hard to follow your heart.

That’s why you get strategic support. Inspiration will only take you so far.

But what would you prefer? To keep dousing your HeartFire? Or to wake up and make your dreams come true?

Wake up to the fact that those ideas you’re hiding in your heart are begging to see the light of day.

Wake up to one-at-a-time Action Steps you can take toward more fulfillment in your passion-fueled business.

Wake up and get clear on what you have to share that is unique, precious AND profitable.

Wake up and plant seeds of intention in your passion-and-purpose-fueled business so you can avoid the feast-or-famine cycle that plagues the conscious, creative business world.

Wake up NOW, not in 3 years when you’re (still) burned out, exhausted, overwhelmed, in debt and full of resentment.

Get ready, here’s a powerful question coming at you:

I’m all about Universal Timing, but if you’re waiting for that fear in your belly to dissipate, here’s a newsflash:

it never goes away. (it just gets easier to feel the fear and act anyway). Acting in spite of the fear is what allows you to create your own dream-come-true life.

There is never a *right* time to do something crazybeautifulamazing like share your creative gifts while doing meaningful work in the world.

How about you start NOW?

I’m waiting for you over here.

I want to help you bring your conscious creative vision to the world.

I want to help you WAKE UP and start making your own dreams come true.

The Yoga Educator Academy stems from the radical premise that yoga business can be profitable and business can be yogic — all we need is to a union of who we are and what we are called to do to leave a mark on the world. If you need a push to get you out of self-doubt and into empowered self-acceptance (and abundant income), then you are in the right place.

Are you up for the (creative) challenge?

 

It’s the EXACT template I followed as a multipassionate, service-driven creative to create two profitable, purpose-driven businesses [this one and this one.]

If you’re asking “But am I ready?,” the answer is yes if you want to…

  • Create, develop and deliver a signature Yoga Teacher Training, Workshop, Specialty Course, Retreat or Online Program
  • Uncover your unique mission, message and model to share your transformative work in the world
  • Set soul-centered goals
  • Leverage your current classes into longer-term programs
  • Find your voice, speak your truth and empower your clients
  • Use your intuition as your best business skill

Sound like you? I thought so.

Click here – your dreams are calling.

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Posted in blog, conscious business, Creative, Motivation, Multipassionate, Yoga Business | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Even the Yoga Business Requires Investments

Plan Your Yoga Business

We all wish we had unlimited funds for education and entertainment and generous gifts, but we don’t.

What we do have is freedom of choice.

We choose how we spend our time and our money.

As helpers and healers, we often get trapped in the scarcity mindset. We don’t have enough money, so instead of hiring help or paying for education, we spend all of our time trying to DIY or Google our way to a yoga MBA. Then, we don’t have enough time to be doing the work that we love.

The inevitable path to resentment begins.

Let’s take a  step back and look at how the most traditional career paths stack up when it comes to money and time. The typical future-lady-CEO spends roughly 6 to 8 years getting an education, a bachelor’s and MBA for a total cost of approximately $60,000. (This estimate is WAY on the low end.)  She then goes to work at an entry level job so that she can get experience  a job that hardly pays enough to cover the 30-year-mortgage-sized monthly student loan payment. She works boatloads of overtime and maybe even a second job. By the time she pays off her student loans, she paid more like $70k or $80k for her education (hello, interest) and it takes her 20 years to climb the corporate ladder.

$80,000 and 20 years to attain a multiple six-figure salary. And, that only happens for the strongest and most strategic women who are hell-bent on getting there.

Now, I’m not saying that you have to spend that kind of money (or that kind of time) to build that kind of income.

What I am saying is that you’re going to have to invest.

$3,000 for a 1-year, 200-hour teacher training does not a six-figure salary make.

In fact, even $10,000 for an advanced yoga training is simply not enough.

It’s not about the money. It’s about the scope of the education and the amount of time that you invest. You can spend truck-fulls of cash and all your time on education, but if it’s not the right kind of education, your dreams of running a thriving biz like a yogi will never come to fruition.

If you want to turn dreams into reality, you have to get strategic about where you are investing your time and money.

You have to get real about where it is you need to grow.

Maybe you need more yoga education.

But, if you’re already thinking of your yoga career as a business, chances are that you have all the yoga education necessary. What you really need is a strategy for leveraging your skills and experience.

Whether you want to be the celebri-yogi, the teacher trainer or the studio owner, you need a message, a voice and a plan.

Your time and your money should be invested in that plan. That plan is what is going to take you from yoga teacher to yoga business owner.

The beautiful part of the plan? It’s 100% unique.

Where do you want to go? 

How do you want to share your gifts? 

What lights your heartfire? 

What type of business honors who you are?

Answering those questions gives your yoga business a direction and a message. Then: you plan.

Most yogis get hung up on this piece because it feels overwhelming and, quite often, something that pushes us up against our limiting beliefs. These beliefs are often what prevents us from becoming high earning yogis. When you understand what the root of these beliefs is and why conquering them is the key to professional success, you remove the glass ceiling and can truly achieve whatever goals you have for your yoga career.

If you are curious about the one thing keeping you from sharing your passion for yoga in a larger way, or you want to know the exact thing you must do in order to profit from your passion as a yoga teacher, therapist or yoga educator, I would love to invite you to a complimentary training program on this very topic.

Invest your time into the one thing that you know will have a return: you.

To more business in yoga and more yoga in business,

KA_Signature

 

 

 

 

P.S. I’ve opened the doors to my signature yoga business and program development course, the Yoga Educator Academy. Head over here to get all the details. (There are some sweet early registration bonuses that disappear soon!)

Posted in conscious business, Yoga Business | 1 Response

Like a Yogi : Breakthrough to Better Business

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Last week I launched the Like a Yogi Interview Series, where I spoke with 7 incredible women who are doing amazing work in the world. Some of them are in the yoga biz and others are teaching people to bring more yoga into their biz. It’s been such an honor to speak with them about the path they took to get where they are today.

Here’s a recap of who we’ve heard from so far & what we’ve heard from them:

Kate Connell

We got real about what it looks like to go from being in love with yoga to supporting yoga teachers, Kate shared with us her experience as a very green yoga studio owner and she opened her heart space about her struggles with jumping into business ownership before she really had a handle on what she wanted to do.

Nancy Alder

Nancy and I talked about how she grew her business by staying true to what was important and authentic to her: community and family. Though Nancy lives in a small town, she had early successes in reach and leverage by choosing to be a support for other yoga teachers.

Cailen Ascher

I chatted with Cailen about her big business growth experience: losing her job before she was completely ready to take the leap into her yoga business. For Cailen, this moment was the catalyst to her success —it was literally sink or swim!

Christine Northcote

In the interview, Christine shared her journey from part-time yoga teacher with a full time job in the traditional business world to full time Studio Owner as the dynamic force behind the successful Winter Park, Florida, studio: Full Circle Yoga. Christine was so honest about what it really took to transform that business after purchasing the well-established local business from her own teacher. Through the ups and downs, Christine stayed connected to service —and it’s clear she’s a shining example of yoga in action.

Sherry Zak Morris

Sherry shared how her passion for an under-served niche (Gentle and Senior’s Yoga) turned into one of the largest online learning resources for this niche market and contributed to her success as a Studio Owner in a saturated market. We also chatted about what happened when she was not ready to step to the “front” of her Yoga Studio business when her partner wanted to leave.

Elsie Escobar

Elsie shared with us how choosing motherhood over business growth shaped her business journey. Elsie also gets real with the conscious choice to not go down the “Celebri-yogi” path but rather stay true to her commitment. If you have struggled with your own choices in business, you’ll really enjoy Elsie’s interview. (Be sure to stick around to the very end, too. There is a beautiful moment near the end of the interview that perfectly captures Elsie’s elegance balancing motherhood and business.)

There’s still time for you to catch the last two episodes. Just head on over here and sign up.

P.S. I have a HUGE announcement coming up this week.

A super special something (I can’t say exactly what just yet) that I’ve been wanting to do for years. My dreams are coming true and I’m making one awesome yogini’s dreams come true too. If you want to know what it is (you know you do) and you may want to be the awesome yogini whose dreams come true, head over to the Like a Yogi page and sign up, because you’ll only hear my big reveal if you’re on the list!

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I’m Quitting Yoga

I’m quitting yoga.

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Why? Because I no longer know what yoga is.

Even though I can tell you the Sanskrit meaning, root word, the historical and philosophical significance of the practice and list at least 20 definitions of yoga from various sacred texts and contemporary teachers, I don’t know what yoga is anymore.

Let’s do a thought experiment to illustrate this concept:

When I say yoga, you think—?

Quick like a bunny, write that down and when you’re done reading this letter, tell me in the comments below!

Let me be clear, I am not quitting the physical practice of therapeutic yoga asana that I perform daily to keep my body happy.
I am not quitting the formal sitting practice I have each morning and evening and the mindfulness I bring into my daily actions.
I am not quitting my commitment to living a moral and ethical life grounded on the yamas and niyamas.
I am not quitting my commitment to the international community of Yoga Therapists and the Wisdom Method School of Yoga (though there will be a big and beautiful reveal coming soon).

What I am quitting is the maelstrom of misunderstanding that is contemporary yoga, particularly in the Western world.

I doubt the ancient sages were referencing (or practicing) what you and I consider yoga. I think we can all agree that yoga is about more than stretching, sweating or fancy pants.

But what does “yoga” really mean? And what does it really mean to be a “yogi”?

While we’re asking those sticky questions, let’s go ahead and ask this one, too:

What does it really mean to be “yogic” in business?

It’s sad to say that I’ve seen more deep hurts and bad business in the yoga community than I ever expected.
Friendships lost over clients “stolen.” (Gentle reminder: people are not property).
Gifted yoga educators fired from teacher training programs because a student gave negative feedback.
Yogis doing violence to one another (and others’ businesses/brands) on social media channels and in yoga communities.
Subcontractors treated like employees—but without the benefits.
Studio’s closing because of rising costs and competition.

Which is why I am also quitting the “traditional” yoga business.

Because if yoga is a meaningless moniker, yoga business is even more so.

If you’re anything like me, yoga comes first: yoga first, then business.

What that means to me is…

Principles come before profits

Taking actions that align with my ethics, morals and intentions

Recognizing the limitlessness of potential —we live in an abundant universe

Choosing love, equanimity, generosity, and spiritual growth over (nearly) everything else

Being guided by intuition and inner wisdom — listening to the Inner Teacher

Being in the yoga business is about more than slapping the word Yoga onto “traditional” business world tactics. (That coin flips both ways: the yoga business requires more than a passion for sharing yoga.)

The contemporary yoga world as it stands needs some help. From how we run our yoga businesses to how we actually practice to how we ascribe meaning back to the word “yoga.”

This is the “yoga” that I am quitting (and all that goes with it).

And that’s why the Like A Yogi series was born. I know I’m not the only one feeling this way —many others have written much more on the topic of contemporary yoga and yoga business. I’m one voice among many.

I hope the Like A Yogi speakers won’t mind me saying this, but in many ways, they’ve “quit yoga,” too. In their own unique way, each of them stepped outside of the realm of what others saw was possible and re-created a luminous future. In each of their stories, common threads will appear: owning who you are, trusting your intuition, following your passion, being flexible in body, mind and business, spirit-filled service, collaboration over competition. My intention for the series is to empower other yogis and yoginis to breakthrough to better business.

In so doing, maybe they will “quit” yoga (and yoga business as usual), too.

Will you join me?

 

KA_Signature

 

 

 

 

P.S. Remember the “yoga” question from above? When I say yoga, you think —? Hit me up with your first impressions in the comments below (or, share on social and tag me @kellie_adkins / #likeayogi)

Posted in blog, Yoga Business, Yoga Reflections | Leave a comment

Opening a Yoga Studio? Let’s think through this.

Kellie Teaching FCY

The yoga studio owner certainly seems like one of the industry’s most glamorous career paths.

Studio owners have their own space, they manage teachers, they are the incubators of the yoga community. It all seems so official—and it is! But for every studio that’s thriving, there are 5 more struggling to make it work. There is a lot of competition.  There are a lot of operating costs. And there is a lot more to do than just teaching yoga.

I don’t say any of this to deter you. I too once had a dream of owning a yoga studio. I pursued it and when it no longer served me, I let it go. I have no regrets, because I learned so many valuable lessons about life and about business during that time— lessons that I now get to share with you.

I want to support you in your dream of opening a yoga studio (if that is, in fact, your dream) and part of support is asking the tough questions.

Are you ready to spend long hours at the studio to get it up and running? We’re not talking about 10 hour shifts here. We’re talking about all hours of the day and night.

Are you ready to be the accountant, the marketing manager, the toilet scrubber and the yoga teacher? If you’re not ready to be all things to all people, you do need to be ready to put up the dollars it’s going to cost you to hire help.

Are you ready to truly be the boss? Sure, being girl boss is super glam, but it doesn’t feel that way when you have to cut someone’s class (or fire someone all together).

I hear from a lot of aspiring studio owners who want to open studios because they want to teach more classes and they want to make a living from yoga. The studio model seems like the quickest way to do this.

Building a studio is anything but quick. It takes years of persistence.

Persistence may actually be the single most important secret to becoming a successful studio owner. I do, however, strongly suggest that you work on some other very important skills like…

  •     Being extroverted
  •     Business & marketing (or an investment in business coaching or a partner who can handle the business side of things)
  •     Discipline
  •     Organization

I’ve seen so many talented yoga educators go into the process of building a studio without truly understanding the scope of what they are undertaking. Most of the time there’s a lot more paperwork and fire extinguishing than actual yoga. This can quickly become disenchanting—especially when there’s not enough money coming in.

The cost of rent is going up, but the cost of yoga is not. Studio owners everywhere are turning to teacher training programs to help drive revenue so that they can keep their doors open and their teachers paid. Here’s a truth bomb for you: Owning a studio and being a teacher trainer are two different career paths that require two different skill sets. While I’ve met many studio owners who balance the two roles with grace, they do so with a lot of help. If you can’t afford help, adding a teacher training program is not the answer.

But there are answers.

Be strategic before you put down roots.

If you want a successful studio, you have to plan for it. The “field of dreams” approach to business planning doesn’t work out. You can build it, but they may not come. Market research is crucial to understand where there is a need for a studio. Future studio owners need to do more than assume there’s a need for a studio simply because there is no studio already there. Look into who lives in the area, where they spend their time and whether or not yoga is enough of a priority for them that they will pay for it. Without this information, you’ll be building your business on a wing and a prayer.

Streamline the simple things. 

Simplify, simplify, and simplify some more. Instead of selling per-class packages only, set up auto-debit memberships: they increase revenue significantly. This is why you won’t find a gym in town pushing single sessions or month-to-month memberships. Not only does auto-debit ensure that there is money in the studio’s pocket, but it also encourages students to commit to their practice. Everyone wins.

Get creative

Your creativity is your friend, dear future Studio Owner. Think broad, diverse and interesting. Bring in retail.  Rent out the studio space on weekend afternoons for Kid’s Yoga Birthday parties. Offer series courses on Meditation, Tai Chi, Adult Ballet, Green Cleaning, Aromatherapy, or Wellness. Offer an upgraded membership that allows students to use the space for personal practice (or Mysore) during certain time slots. Offer small group privates. Rent your space to studio-less teacher trainings— these are all options that drive revenue without creating a ton of work for yourself. Because the last thing you’re going to need as a studio owner is more work.

Finally, you can do everything right and still suffer from the scourge of small business ownership: overworking and under-earning. Which is why it’s so important to know your BIG WHY.

Why do you want to own a studio?

After you answer that question, dig a little deeper and ask yourself why one or two more times. We are looking for the deep down reasons, the reasons that will drive you to just keep putting one foot in front of the other, even when it feels like you’re not moving forward.

If you know your WHY and you’re motivated by more than just the perks of being the boss, setting the rules and being a local celebri-yogi, your chances of survival are high.

Do you have a dream of owning a studio— or any kind of yoga biz, for that matter? Head over and sign up for the Like a Yogi interview series. Hear from yoga professionals who are living their dreams and find out just how they got there.

 

 

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Are You a Yoga Nerd with a Passion for Education?

 

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Leveraging your time as a yoga teacher is the cornerstone of earning more money doing what you love—teaching yoga.

You could work to fill up your schedule with group and private classes. Or, you could take all of the wisdom and experience that you’ve acquired and turn it into a high-value workshop or training that highlights your strengths and passions.

You may not be ready (or you may not want) to take on writing curriculum for a 200 or 500 hour training. But that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t write curriculum at all.

If you’re a natural born teacher with a passion for educating and inspiring, this is your opportunity to let that shine.

If you’re a highly creative, inwardly motivated, yoga nerd this may be your destiny and destiny has its perks. If you take the path of the trainer and/or educator…

  •      You’ll gain social cred. You’re the expert now!
  •      In addition to your group and private classes, now you have another revenue stream: holla!
  •      Most of the time, you get paid well {in general ~$100/teaching hour}
  •      You get to choose a topic {or topics} you love and go deep, really honing your ‘expert’ status

This is sounding pretty appealing isn’t it, yoga nerd?

So now the question it, how do you make it happen?

Hold that pen still for just a moment, sister.

Before you open a new notepad and go to work on creating a yoga training, you need a foundation. You need to make sure that all of that time you spend developing a class series or signature workshop is well-spent—that it actually serves your ideal client AND that you’ll be able to teach it over and over again with minimal changes.

Ask yourself…

: What motivates you?

: Who do you most want to serve?

: Can you describe this person/group in three-to-four words?

Examples: Conscious Business Owners, Yoga Professionals, Wounded Healers, Ambitious Conscious Professionals, People in Chronic Pain, Spiritual Multipassionate Entrepreneurs, Women Abuse Survivors, Children with Learning Disorders, Spiritually Motivated Nurturers, Independent Creatives, Millenial Entrepreneurs, Stay-at-Home Moms, Work-from-Home Moms, Mindful Parents, Eco-conscious World Travellers, Fit Spiritual Boomers

: What, specifically, about this group attracts you?

: Why do you want to share your gifts with this group/this person?

: What do you have in common with this group?

Once you can shut out the inner and outer influences impinging on your intuition, you will be one step closer to tuning into the direction that your yoga biz should follow.

Now, bring it all together…

Most of the time, as we answer these questions we see a clear connection between the types of people we want to serve, what they need to learn and the gifts we have to share with the world.

In fact, we usually want to serve people who are just like us — or, more specifically, just like we were. Which means that they want to learn the things that we have learned to get us to the point where we are now.

The underlying theme or thread may not always be SUPER obvious, but I assure you that there is one. If you can’t quite connect the dots between what motivates you, your gifts and who you serve, as yourself “why” a few more times.

For example, why do I want to share my gifts with this group? Because it’s what I feel most comfortable sharing? Why is what I feel most comfortable sharing? Because it’s where I’m most knowledgeable. Why is it where you’re most knowledgeable? Because it’s what I’ve spent the most time studying and practicing.

Oh really? Well, is that what the group of people you want to serve what to study and practice? Now we are onto something.

This simple exercise uncover the very foundation of what you should be teaching and who you should be teaching it to.

Next step, a plan.

Head over the Like a Yogi Speaker Series and register to watch interviews with Yoga Educators with brilliant plans and great resources for building a sustainable yoga business.

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The Many Facets of Teaching Yoga

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It’s time for a truth bomb.

The (old) yoga business model is broken.

Unless you’re one of the highest paid celebri-yogis that tip the scale toward a conceivable annual salary, chances are you’re earning less than $30,000 a year teaching yoga.

“The casual, gig-based nature of yoga teaching makes it hard to gather hard data about the profession, and estimates of its average annual salary range from $45,000 to roughly $30,000 or less. A yoga teacher’s income may vary wildly from month to month, as practitioners go on vacation or decide to stay home due to inclement weather. And on top of all that, a flood of new teachers has made the competition for teaching slots more intense than ever.” Source

Think Yoga Studio Owners have it better?

Wrong.

Studio Owners have all the challenges of every small business from filling the classes to finding high quality teachers to competing with neighboring studios.

Last year, author and yoga instructor Elena Brower closed her SoHo studio—Virayoga—after 12 years in business. Overhead is rising; the prices of yoga classes are not.

Some studios combat this by slapping together haphazard curriculum and calling it a teacher training, which in many ways perpetuates the seemingly unsolvable problem of yoga as a sustainable career.

Here’s another truth bomb for you:

There is a better way.

The yoga business is evolving and there are far more options for better yoga business than ever before.

The beauty of the new face of yoga business is that location, technology and niche-interests create the perfect constellation of what I like to call Yoga Plus.

Want to blend yoga, wellness coaching and intuitive readings?  Now is the time.

Want to open a yoga teacher training school? It’s easier than ever to step into the Teacher’s seat.

Want to travel worldwide and lead yoga + cycling retreats? Do it. (and send me the details!)

Want to teach virtual Private yoga classes from your living room? If you can video chat, you can definitely figure this out.

Want to retire your weekly group classes and move only to high-paid series classes and workshops? You can do it!

Want to create a “Yoga for Beginners” training course and sell it on your website? Great idea! You should go for it.

Want a location-independent yoga business? No rent, no problem!

The new generation of yoga business is here and it’s innovative, creative and has many passions —just like you.

So what do you want for yourself and your yoga business?

If you want fame, fortune and travel, you may want to be a Celebri-Yogi.

If you have expert status, want to write curriculum and love to teach, you may be a Teacher Trainer in the making.

If you want to be the boss and build community, owning a Yoga Studio may be in your future.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be talking about these yoga professional archetypes and what your next steps are to move your ideal yoga business forward so that you can move past “barely scraping by” and into something more abundant.

Stay tuned.

But, if you just can’t wait to find out what you should do next to grow your yoga biz, click over to the Like a Yogi Speaker Series where you’ll watch interviews from successful Celebri-Yogis, Studio Owners, Teacher Trainers and more of the yoga industry’s finest. Did I mention it will be free?

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Do you want to be a Celebri-Yogi?

Today’s blog post is by yogini & brand strategist Laura Dos Santos of She Oms. I’ve worked with Laura and her team for the last year on branding, website design and program launches and I’m so pleased to have her here blogging about her favorite area of expertise—Instagram!

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With as familiar as I am with Kellie’s website and her tribe, I feel like I’ve made it big now that I’m here sharing my love of Insta-Fame and my support for Celebri-Yogis today!

Before you click away at the thought of Instagram + Celebri-Yogis, hold that mouse still for a hot minute, my friend.

We’ve come to associate celebri-yogis with fancy—and potentially dangerous–asana and not a whole lot of actual yoga. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

Today, I invite you drop your preconceived notions of what being Insta-Famous is and really dig a little deeper into what you want for yourself and the types of people you are going to serve when you step into that role.

You need to step into the role of Celebri-Yogi If…

  • You want to develop signature workshops that you’ll teach across the country—or maybe even around the world.
  • You want to teach at large festivals and conferences.
  • You want a huge community that’s interested in your every day life just as much as they are interested in what you’re teaching.

Even if you’re not ready take the plunge just yet, if you ultimately want to see the world and share yoga with a whole lot of people, you better start building a brand right now.

Don’t run away!

(Sheesh, I sure am having to work hard to keep you around these parts today.)

Even if you are super extroverted and thrilled by the idea of yoga fame, the work that it takes to actually get there can be a little overwhelming. But I happen to know that you can handle it, because whether you realize it or not, your network is full of people who are highly qualified to teach you how to lay the foundation for your celebri-yogi career.

If you want yoga fame, you’re going to need clarity, organization and marketing.

Kellie has been instrumental in helping so many yoga educators and helping & healing professionals (myself included!) find clarity, get organized and start marketing. So I was so honored when she invited me here to talk about marketing.

You can be colorless-diamond-clear and you can be organized, but if no one knows about it, you won’t be famous, love.

This is where the marketing comes in—getting your message into the hands, eyes and ears of the right people is essential. Marketing has this silly reputation of being manipulative and a little magical, but we are going to bust that myth right here.

While there may be a little trial and error involved, the formula is simple, you get clear, you get organized and then you find your people and share what you’re doing in a way that truly serves them.

Right now, the hottest way to find your people and share your yoga message is Instagram.

Whether you love it or hate it, the fact remains that the yoga community on Instagram is HUGE and it’s growing every day. Yes, it’s asana focused. Yes, some of it is hardly yoga at all. Yes, there is room for improvement.

You can sit here and pass all kinds of judgment on how ridiculous the Insta-Yogis are.

But it’s not going to serve you.

What will serve you is embracing the fact that yogis are easily found on Instagram through hashtag search. In a couple of taps, you can be connected to MILLIONS of people who want to hear your message. You can build relationships with people all over the globe.

You can create a name for yourself— and share your message—without a lot of money.

But you’re already on Facebook…what’s the difference?

Facebook is a dying platform. It’s pay to play— no one is seeing what you post unless you are paying for advertising or moderating a group. Not to mention (or, I guess I am mentioning it) it’s much harder to actually find your yogis, because people just aren’t posting nearly as much about yoga on this platform–the community just hasn’t thrived there.

Instagram is where the yoga party is.

And that party is more than just a popularity contest. It’s a celebration of community.

So now that I’ve convinced you that Instagram is the path to the Celebri-Yogi life, what are you going to do?

(1) Get clear

(2) Get Organized

(3) Get on Instagram and start building your community

Ok, let’s be serious.

This is the simplified version of the path to Insta-Fame. My teaching style is to give you a little bit at a time so that you can digest it before moving onto the next big biz lesson.

Speaking of my teaching style, part of the reason Kellie asked me to take the reins on her blog here today is to let you know that I am launching a digital course this week on using Instagram for Mindful Marketing. Whether you’re planning on being a Celebri-Yogi or you just want to grow your local following, this course is your jumping off point AND I’m opening it a day early—JUST for Kellie and a few other yoga biz BFFs.

Registration is now open for you!

Love & Light,

Laura

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Year of the Goat : A Year of Radical Union

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I’m finally ready to share my annual plan, just in time for Chinese New Year.

It’s the year of the goat.

This is a yang year, meaning kindness, benevolence and auspiciousness is in our future and I suspect that this auspiciousness will take on a very different form for me than it has in years past.

Usually my New Year process of intention setting followed by sacred goal alignment results in a fiery word or an active verb like

RADIATE (2009)

EXPAND (2010)

GROW (2011)

A quality that requires bravery like

AUTHENTICITY (2012)

Or a shield-carrying and sword-wielding word like

COURAGE (2013)

FAIL (2014) (there’s a story to this one)

There’s a definite trend. I tend toward fiery and airy words that require me to be always on…always transforming (Fire) or always expanding (Air).

That is a good thing when you’re growing a business (and as a Pitta-Vata doshic type, this doesn’t surprise me), but this year’s intuitive intention took me quite by surprise.

Intuition shrieked at me to get centered, to nurture and to yoke.

RADICAL UNION (2015)

To draw in instead of expanding outward. To nurture instead of achieving and pioneering. To feather the nest instead of flying into the heady expanse of freedom.

In a figurative sense, I scratched my head and thought “What?”

Then, I balked. Because my comfort zone is expansion, change and growth. I’m not always comfortable with ease. The more I investigated, though, the trend began to emerge (see above).

Everything cycles, everything changes, and everything that lives must honor those inevitable cycles —including my ambition and my annual focus.

This year, I’m craving the solitude of introspection, the stark black and white of words on page, the quietude of the creative cave, the intimacy of deeper work, and the harmony of retreat.

Obviously, this is a departure from my current business model.

And I can’t just pick up and walk away from my life.

There is a back story to this all—I’ll give you the Cliff’s Notes.

During my birthday month (November), I get a little more woo-woo than usual because I like the ritual of connecting to sacred during the anniversary of my trips around the sun.

Last year, I chose an intuitive reading with a dear friend and colleague —I needed some healing and intuitive guidance and this was the perfect choice.

This year, I again chose an intuitive reading.

Each time, the themes of creating through writing were present…

…as were the boundary issues.

Here’s a quick summary of the recurring themes:

  • A need for protection and to strengthen / fortify my barrier.
  • A need for a practice to find strength in my mystical lineage.
  • A history of silencing my voice
  • A message to give voice (create, share, write) now
  • Lifetimes-long connections to the wisdom traditions
  • This life, mystical. And messy.
  • Meta-themes for this life: Intuitive, Healer, Mystic, Empath.

In each case, I was both certain and resentful…have you ever felt this way when you got a dose of the Truth?

Because in each case, I was ready to step away from my “dharma” of sharing yoga and mindfulness and into the numinous realm of creative possibility. It seemed this was pulling me back in.

I love teaching and sharing yoga. I light up inside when I see the spark of understanding in students. The reality of teaching yoga —and yoga therapy education— is a struggle.

My soft animal body craves rest. Deep quietude. The sanctity of the creative cave. Time to create, reflect and write.

Mystical exploration and philosophical inquiry, yes. Sharing what I know and empowering others as a guide and healer, yes.

The life of a traveling celebri-yogi, no.

Yet as a trained performer and empathic introvert, I understand what The Show Must Go On truly means.

It means, keep going even when you really need to re-charge. It means, show up when you’d really prefer to hibernate in the creative cave and not speak for days. It means, layer up on the gemstones, mantras, mudras and oils to form a protective shield from the endless onslaught of others’ energy. (As an empath, I feel it all: good and bad)

It means, don’t schedule anything the day after teaching an intensive because it will take at least a full day to find your center and recover your energy.

So I took a hard look at the business model I had created for myself (again). One founded on being “on,” performing and leading.

I call it (fondly), the Edutainment Industry.

And I realized it no longer worked for me.

I love crafting curriculum but now I am writing a book.

I love leading transformative, long-term trainings but how I do that is shifting (less certification focused, more experience driven).

I adore seeing the light of understanding in others’ eyes and I will continue to do so (like this).

I adore leading the small, immersive experiences and will continue to do so (like this).

I am freakishly excited about helping other yoga entrepreneurs develop their own teacher trainings, lead Retreats, and craft high value services (see here and here).

This year, I am radically uniting what I teach on the mat —embodied energy, sacred form —with all my business coaching. This year, I’m drawing in around a small and sacred circle, who are ready to shine their light in a much bigger way —and in a way that aligns with their purpose and personality.

Embodied experience, practical magic, intentional business design and sacred self-care.

Radical Union.

So tell me, lovely, what is your (Chinese) New Year focus? Tell me in the comments below!

xo

KA_Signature

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. Want to see what this year’s promise of RADICAL UNION sparked? Head over here.

Posted in blog, conscious business, Inspire & Grow, Motivation | 2 Responses

Play is Part of the Creative Business Process

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We did a lot of talking about mindset, leadership, goals and intentions, both on this blog and in the January Finding Flow Challenge. Intellectual support is necessary to create a solid foundation for your business–making it an integral part of your success as you do the work that you were meant to do in this world

But there’s more to business success than productivity, strategy & focus.

Efficiency in business matters only when it results in more time for integration, creation and restoration. Leadership and vision matter just as much as productivity and check-off-able lists.

Leadership requires confidence, vision requires introspection and planning. And it’s here that our intuition becomes our best business support.

If we can tap into how things  feel in our business, we can extract some very clear messages for business direction.

The best part? If you can tap into intuition,  you will be able to make even better business decisions.

This is what I teach my clients when I work with them one-on-one. Mindset is just as important as strategy. To accomplish big goals and reach big dreams, we need to harness the power of alignment in intention and action. We have access to our inner wisdom at all times —although the messages get blurred when we don’t take the time to truly listen and to evaluate how things feel. The final piece is being willing to be guided by intuition.

Following our intuition helps us stay in flow in our business. Intuition tells us when things are misaligned. That feeling you get in the pit of your stomach, tells you that this may not be the right decision. It’s our intuition’s natural tendency to move towards harmony. While harmony looks different for each of us, the underlying concept is the same—deep down inside we seek accord and when we make decisions (or even think about making decisions) that go against that accord, there’s a part of us (that deep down inside part) that sends us a message to please reconsider.

Just as we spend time on personal development, educating ourselves on the ins and outs of business and continuing to study our craft, we must also spend time honing our intuition.

Exercising our intuition invites us to play!

Business strategy is about more than business books and annual plans. To keep the intuitive connection strong, I encourage you to explore this body, this mind and the world in which it operates. Play is part of the process.

Today, I’m sharing with you part of a Flow Play assignment taken from Finding Flow | A Happiness Challenge For Your Business. We’re focusing on connecting the two sides of the body— and the two sides of the brain— to create conscious movement patterns with an effort to access an absorbed, in-tune, intuitive state of flow.

We do this is by using the non-dominant side of the body in a rhythmic pattern. I’ll let you choose exactly what you want to do with your “weird” hand or “awkward” foot, but if nothing comes to mind immediately, here are some suggestions:

  • Drawing a lamniscus (infinity symbol) with chalk / paint / pen / other medium (I highly recommend a large surface – a big canvas, sidewalk chalk, white board, large blackboard)
  • Whisking cream / rice / eggs
  • Hula Hooping the ‘weird’ way
  • Knitting Continental Style (this only works if you’re already a knitter – and it may take longer than 5 minutes to find flow!)
  • Cleaning mirrors / windows (anything that involves circular motion will work)

Listen in -and enjoy the Flow Play!

How to play along:

There are just two rules for this exercise.

1) The movement must stay simple.

2) The movement must be performed with your non-dominant side.

When you begin the movement within that first frame of time, is that it will feel intellectual. You’ll have to think about it a lot. Because the action itself it familiar, but the movement pattern is different, your brain will have to work at the beginning to figure out what’s going on.

After the 2 to 5 minute period, you’ll find that it starts to feel a little more natural.

  • Notice the shift in movement from awkward to graceful, from intellectual to intuitive.
  • Involve your whole body – gracefully and efficiently.
  • Stay focused. Attention is key.

Do this again, but on your dominant side…allow yourself to go into the dominant pattern until you find an effortless state.

The idea is that we are making some different connections between the two sides of the body and the two sides of the brain. By doing the awkward side first, we will be able to notice the phase shift from very conscious intellectual state to more intuitive action.

Thanks for finding flow with me today!

yours in flow,

KA_Signature

 

 

 

 

 

P.S.  I’m delivering reflections on motherhood, mysticism and the beauty in the everyday to your inbox each Sunday with a brand new missive called Centered Sunday. Click on over here to sign up.

Posted in conscious business, Creative, Yoga Business | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment
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