Business

Does your yoga career need some love?

I know – I haven’t updated in a bit…but that’s because I have been doing some serious behind the scenes shit!  First – my new website is finally LIVE! There are still a few things that need to be adjustedThis blog will be migrating over there soon, so make sure you update your feed and add yourself to my list to stay up-to-date on everything current.

Second, I a have booked a number of speaking engagements over the course of the next 6 months- I am sharing info and experience on everything corporate and yoga biz and how to really grow your yoga business and settle into (and THRIVE!) in your yoga career.

Speaking of, have you totally noticed that there’s a crap-load of hype about following your  passion to create a career you love… but not much honest + practical  advice on HOW TF to do it?

Get off Your meditation pillow and hustle.

Trying to figure out how to turn your  passion into a profitable + sustainable yoga career?? HELLO OVERWHELM. And even more – it  often seems like the only yogis who DO make a comfortable living sharing yoga are ‘celebriyogis’ or studio owners.

What about the rest of us? Screw ‘celebriyogis’. We all want to be Superstar Yoginis in business!

That’s why I’m redonkulously excited about the from Yogi to Yogipreneur Virtual  Conference Series. My friend + colleague, Racheal Cook (founder of TheYogipreneur.com) is bringing together over 30 amazing yogis to share exactly how they turned their passion for yoga into a real career… and she’s invited ME to teach how to Cover Your Asana(TM): Yoga Business and the Law

Join me here.

Business, Social Media, Yoga

WTF should I post?

R 3 Tricks for Building an Active Facebook Following 

Engage Your TribeBuilding a following on Facebook can be a challenge for lots of yoga teachers and studios because they’re not sure of the most effective ways to engage users and grow their tribe. Businesses with successful Facebook Pages use some key strategies to keep their fan base active and attract new followers on a consistent basis.

Here are three of the most effective tricks for building a following on Facebook:

Offer Value. Post Relevant and Informative Content. 

Content is key. And content doesn’t simply mean your class and workshop schedule. It’s essential to post relevant content that your tribe will enjoy. Did Elephant Journal post a great article? Share it. Did something make you laugh? Share that too. You can also ‘keep it local’ by engaging fans with news or information their local yoga community. Current events are a great example of localized Facebook content that readers want to hear about.

Being informative (read: ADDING VALUE) will keep users returning to your Facebook Page and can also lead to your page being shared by your fans. Whether your business is local or not, posting links to articles and tutorials is an effective way to include informative content. You can post information from other websites or create your own content and brand it with your business name to build name recognition and increase brand awareness.

Ask Questions

Asking questions is a fantastic way to generate discussions on your Facebook Page. The answers your fans provide may give you insight into what your tribe wants and ideas about how to improve your offerings (or even dare I say, marketing!).  There are some very specific types of questions that can lead to increased engagement and participation on your page.

Yes or no questions are very simple and can be quickly answered by Facebook users. Two great yes or no questions to ask users are if they have signed up to your newsletter or visited your website. These types of questions create awareness of the rest of your business, are quick and easy to answer, and are engaging at the same time.

You can also use polls to ask questions about customer preferences and interest. Facebook makes this really easy by visiting facebook.com/poll. While products and services are one subject for a poll, you can also have ones about current events or other topics related to your business. You can even have a weekly poll so that users will know to return to your page on a regular basis. As with any methods for increasing your following, the trick is to make it fun and users will come back frequently.

Create Contests

People love winning prizes and contests, especially if there are free products or a discount involved. By asking readers to like the content on your page or tweet your page to enter the contest, you can dramatically increase your following. When one of your readers likes or tweets your page, all their friends will see that. People are much more likely to like pages based on the recommendations of their friends and colleagues. In addition, you will build more brand awareness as your name is seen in more places on Facebook.

Building an active following on Facebook may take some time, but it is an essential part of every business’s social media marketing plan. The key is to be engaging and post content consistently so that your followers have a reason to visit and interact. Community development and management must be considered and treated as an investment. Slow expansion, not viral growth, is normal with Facebook. Don’t expect fast results. Be happy with steady growth. A Facebook Page is the page of your “brand” -Own it and use it wisely!

Business, Legal, Yoga

Cover Your Asana

Happy Baby Asana is brought to you by the Lovely Jessi Andricks at http://www.thehouseofhealthy.com

So you finished your teacher training and you’re ready to dive into teaching yoga full time. This is your dharma. You’re doing what you love and loving what you do. You’ve perfected your craft. You’re certified and licensed. You might even open a studio. You’re living the yoga teacher dream. Your classes are full. You’re booking retreats. Best of all, you’re paying your bills!  But are you covering your asana?

As yoginis, we rarely think about all the awful things that could happen to us. We’re programmed to positivity.  But as business owners it’s our responsibility to make sure all those little things that could go wrong don’t and to cover our asana. What happens if someone gets hurt in one of my classes? What if a coaching client doesn’t show up or worse, doesn’t pay? What if someone reads something on my website,  thinks I am a doctor and can cure their sciatica?  These are just a few liabilities that can creep up when you’re in the business of yoga – and there are so many more. There are a number of things you can do to make sure you’re protected and to insulate yourself from liability. The first two steps are to choose and registering your business structure and obtained liability insurance. Once these things are out of the way, it’s time to talk about contracts and ensure you’re using the correct forms, properly drafted for your use. It’s important to understand what they are, and why you need them. Before we dig in, lets start with a little Contract 101. A contract:

  • Is an agreement between people or legal entities to do or not to do particular things.
  • Is an opportunity to write down what everyone agreed to, so that you can minimize misunderstandings.
  • Can sometimes be overruled by government laws and regulations (such as employment law, human rights law, consumer protection laws etc). Can be a good tool to manage your business risk.

Contracts can be developed by an attorney, legal consultant or you can utilize online templates. In contracting, words and punctuation are of the utmost importance and online templates may not always address your needs. As a heart-centered business owner, you should take a conscious approach to contracting. Make sure you take time to understand contracts before you sign, and do not sign if you do not understand. Now on to the juicy bits… my top 10 legal agreement list for Yoga Businesses.

1. Release and Waiver of Liability Form   You know that form you sign when you go to a studio for the first time? It’s important.  It’s called a release and waiver of liability form.  In a properly drafted release form the student acknowledges that they accept any and all risks involved with yoga and that he or she will not hold you or your studio liable for any injury that may occur.  For Studios – every student that enters your yoga room should be signing this.  If you don’t own a studio and you teach in another setting, every person you teach should sign this form. If you’re teaching at a studio, ensure the studio’s release form specifically includes a release of liability for the teacher- many only cover the studio and not the teacher. This means if a student trips on your yoga mat as they’re leaving your class, they can’t sue the studio, but they can sue you! YIKES!

2. Employment/Independent Contractor Agreement.  If working at a studio, make sure you have an agreement in place. You could be hired as an employee or an independent contractor, though most studios hire teachers as independent contractors and not part or full time employees. If you’re hired as an employee- make sure you receive an offer letter as well as an employee hand book. If you’re hired as an Independent Contractor, make sure this is also memorialized in writing. The agreement should outline your pay scale, your services/duties, tax implications, confidentiality, liabilities/indemnities and the term.

3. Confidentiality Agreement/Non-Disclosure Agreement  A Confidentiality/Non Disclosure Agreement is quite simply a contract to keep a secret; they protect sensitive information  If you work with other people (yoga teachers, virtual assistance, web designers etc.) that may potentially have access to your student/client information, even if it’s just their email address, you need a NDA.

4. Content Consent Release Agreement  Consent Release Agreements give you permission to use a person’s image or likeness on your website or promotional materials. If you want take pictures in class for future promotional use or to simply use on your website and/or social media, you need to obtain permission to use that person’s image.

5. Client Agreement Many yoga teachers offer additional coaching or private instruction outside of studio classes.  If you do, client contracts are essential!! These agreements help protect both you and your client if something goes wrong.  The Client Agreement outlines the working relationship, commitments, payments and timing.  

6. Workshop/Retreat Agreement This agreement may look similar to the independent contractor/employee agreement  or even a collaboration agreement.  It articulates the where, when, why, and how much of your workshop or event. This agreement should cover the payment structure of the event and any promotional requirements.

7. Collaboration Agreement  A collaboration agreement outlines the working relationship of the parties on a specific project. Yoginis are social people, we love working with others. If you have an idea or something you want to bring to life and you want someone else to do it with you, you need a collaboration (sometimes called a teaming) agreement.

The last three are agreements should include on your website:

8. Terms & Conditions for your Website If you have a website (and you better!) it must must have Terms & Conditions. T &Cs act as a contract between your home on the interweb and all its visitors. T&Cs on your website protect you from liability that any of your visitors might take. If you sell any items on your website it is essential you have T&Cs in addition to the disclaimer (below) and the T&Cs must comply with applicable consumer protection legislation.  

9. Website Privacy Policy Privacy policies govern how you will use a website visitors’ private information. If you’re trying to build your following through your website, you probably have a way to capture potential student information. If you’re capturing this information you need a privacy policy. State by state, privacy rules may vary but because the interweb is world wide it’s possible for you to open yourself up to liability of a different state than the one you live in. 

10. Website Disclaimer  The legal risks you face depend on the content of your website. Many yoga teachers provide information, advice, and/or instructional videos on their websites which exposes them to potential legal claims.  To help protect you from potential claims you must have a disclaimer on your website. Your disclaimer must be tailored to include exact language to fit the specifics of your website both in terms of the substance of the material and how it is intended to be used. General language won’t cut it! If you swipe generic disclaimer language from another website, it’s probably useless! 

With proper drafting some of these issues can be combined into others, but don’t just start cutting and pasting legal terms together. Consciously approach your contracting needs, be mindful of the relationship and your end goal. If you need assistance with conscious contracting or template design and review – I am happy to help!

Business, Social Media, Yoga

Using Facebook Groups

Last week I dipped my big toe into the Facebook pool.  Today I want to talk about FB Groups and how they should (and shouldn’t) be utilized. There are huge differences between FB pages and FB Groups. “A Page is meant to be more of a broadcasting platform one-to-many (though obviously you should be engaging with your fans also), whereas Groups are meant more for equal collaboration and discussion amongst a group of people who are related in some way and/or share some sort of similar interest.”  While each can and should be used by yoga business owners for marketing, networking and connecting to their tribe – they can and should be used in different ways. 

Facebook groups can be formed for a number of reasons to accomplish any number of goals. They can be formed by a business or coach for teleclasses or programming, by membership association,  formed to start a movement,  to promote your business and to network.

Here’s the DL on Groups:

  • Facebook Groups can be public, closed (anyone can find Group, only members see posts) or secret (nobody can find the Group unless added by a member).
  • There are two ways to join Groups – a Facebook friend adds you or you ‘ask to join’ and an admin of the Group accepts your request.
  • Groups don’t allow much branding at all. You get only your profile picture (a small square image), and nothing else.
  • Groups don’t allow other tabs/applications. This means you couldn’t run a competition, or have a contact page, welcome page or anything like that.
  • Group posts don’t go to your newsfeed. Instead, you get a ‘notification’ that someone has posted in the group. This can be both good and bad – it’s good because people definitely won’t miss it, no matter how long after you post the content they log onto facebook. HOWEVER, sometimes when there is too much posting going on it just gets so annoying a lot of people choose to change their notification settings so that they don’t receive these anymore. As the posts aren’t fed to your Facebook newsfeed, you effectively forget about the group forever because there is nothing prompting you to visit.
  • Groups allow ‘shared documents’ as well as group chat.
  • Fans of a Page cannot see everyone else who is a fan. Members of a group can see other members of that group.
  • Both Pages and groups can create events, post images, allow commenting/liking, restrict posts to only admins, and create polls.

*This list was created by Cara Pring on The Social Skinny.

I am totally ashamed to admit to how many FB groups I am a member of. It’s a disturbingly high number.  Every so often I go through the list, leave some and update others.  But my membership issues with FB groups isn’t really what I want to talk about today.  I really want to talk about how yoga business owners can use FB Groups for more personalized networking and marketing.

I am all for FB groups, obviously – I participate in them, moderate them and network in them. However in order for them to be beneficial to the members of the group and to the administrators, we need to remember that they serve a different function than Fanpages. There are two killer mistakes I see yoga teachers and studios making when it comes to creating and participating in Facebook Groups:

Mistake #1: Creating a Group instead of a Fanpage

If you’re running a business and using Facebook as a marketing tool to build your tribe and email list, you need a Fanpage.  FanPages are the official profiles for your business. Using a Facebook Page to connect with your students is a form of community development and it’s free advertising. The big bonus here is you don’t have to be a member of Facebook to view a Fanpage. This allows you greater access to your growing tribe and potential new students and a new student pool is essential for studios and teachers!!  A Facebook Page is the page of your “brand” -Own it, use it wisely and grow it organically.

Mistake #2: Joining a networking group and spamming the crap out of them. Networking groups are designed not only to promote, but to support. If you’re just promoting in your networking group, you’re doing it wrong.   Here’s a great example- if you’re in a networking group filled only with other yoga teachers promoting your “introduction to yoga class series” there really isn’t going to get you jack shit for enrollment. Even worse, it’s going to piss off the people you’re trying to network with- why would another studio owner want to enroll in your into to yoga class? She wouldn’t. Networking is the exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically :  the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business. It’s about cultivating relationships, NOT simply promoting your shit. If you’re just there to promote, you’re better off buying add space and leaving the group. 

The business of Facebook can be tricky, but these days, it’s practically essential to grow your business. Be sure to update regularly, keep your tribe engaged and offer something of value. ALWAYS offer something of value.  If you use your page or group only for promoting your workshop and classes you can kiss brand loyalty goodbye.  Even worse, there’s a good chance that your members and friends won’t be returning to your page anytime soon.

Business, Social Media

Facebook 101 Series

facebook-2This month I am going to talk a little bit about Facebook. It’s not the first time. It probably won’t be my last.  Facebook posts always seem to garner lots of responses. I think it’s because many yoga teachers and studios owners are either Facebook averse or they’re not utilizing it to their advantage. It’s time to change that. Facebook and social media isn’t going away, it’s actually becoming more and more essential to our business success.   Being a business owner is hard. All of a sudden we’re supposed to be experts not only in our field and craft but in marketing, social media and website design too.  It’s ridiculously frustrating – trust me, I know.  I don’t expect you to become a Facebook or social media expert, but you should know enough to use it to your advantage. I ‘m not a Facebook expert, but I learn from experts.

Today I am going to get a little dangerous and do a little Facebook breakdown for you. Facebook comes in basically three flavors for your business: the profile, the Fan Page and the Group.  If you’re currently rocking your business in flavor number 1- stop it. First, it’s against the rules, second you won’ t be seen and lastly, you could run out of friends – you’re only allowed 5k you know. Create a Fanpage and migrate that shit over.  Every business should have a Fanpage and here’s why:

It’s all Marketing, baby. 
Using your personal Facebook account profile for your business is limiting. Search engines may pick up your name via your Facebook profile, but not necessarily the name of your business. It’s all in the SEO.  It just makes more sense to use Facebook to your advantage + be found by search engines.

Another core issue with using your personal Facebook account for marketing is privacy settings. Businesses aren’t private, well I guess some may be, but not Yoga Business. You want to, need to get out there.  If you want other people to see the information you are sharing on Facebook with your private account, they first have to be accepted by you as a friend. This is an extra step that delays that person from being able to interact with you. Facebook offers business pages that are more search engine and people friendly.

Creating a Fan Page
Fan Pages, are optimized for small and large businesses. They are currently the most ideal way for businesses to promote themselves on Facebook for several reasons, including the ability to brand an individual page with your own style and layout. Facebook Pages feature tabs that can include very similar content to what is typically available on static websites. Great uses for Facebook tabs include a newsletter signup tab and a coupon tab for customers who like the page. These types of tabs can lead to increased sales and provide you with vital contact information to reach out to customers via email as well.

SEO. Lets get back to that for a moment, shall we? Facebook has already established itself as a reputable resource within search engines. Facebook Pages with the proper keywords may have an easier time being discovered on search engines because of Facebook’s high traffic volume and online integrity.

Connecting with your tribe.
Your family isn’t your tribe. You tribe is made up of potential new customers and raving fans. You need to build a deeper connection with them. Connect to your family and your high school ex boyfriends on your personal page.  Connect to your tribe on your Fan Page. It’s free and easy to create, Facebook Pages can bring the type of targeted attention and traffic to your business or website that just isn’t possible with your personal profile.

If you’re promoting and marketing your yoga business through your personal profile your challenge this week is to create a Fan Page and tell your friends to like it!

Next up, Facebook Groups!

Business, Yoga

In Yo Face Friday

I believe in putting action behind your mantra. In the non-yoga world that’s called putting your money where your mouth is.

When I first started digging into yoga, reiki, the metaphysical, the law of attraction, abundance, manifestation and all the other new age goodness, I lost the type-a hustler in me. I had extreme faith in my ability to manifest anything I wanted into existence. I still do.  For a little while I forgot I needed to get off my ass and hustle, I couldn’t just meditate + vision board abundance into existence.

Thank Goddess, I remembered.

Last summer, I attended the Business of Yoga Conference in DC sponsored by the Yoga Alliance. It’s a fantastic conference, I highly recommend it and I thoroughly enjoyed 90% of the sessions I attended. BUT the entire time I was there, I wanted to know why the F am I not on their presenters list? I certainly should have been.

The months leading up to the conference, when the RFP went out for speakers I was floating somewhere between lacking confidence and believing that someone would eventually see my brilliance, reach out to me and demand that I speak.  So I meditated on it. I created a vision board around it. And I never submitted a response to their RFP. Guess what? No one came knocking down my door, demanding I deliver my brilliance to the eager yogis in DC.

Why? Because I sat on my meditation pillow. And when I got off my meditation pillow my hands were filled with magazine clippings and glue sticks (and more than likely a little sage). The most action I took was laying down my credit card to register for the conference.

It takes more than that. You have to dare to dream, but you also have to take measurable steps towards that dream. You have to set measurable goals and take steps towards achieving them.  You have to…

Meditation hustle

There are a lot of yoga business coaches out there and more and more are launching every single day. With studios opening like Starbucks, can you blame them? We all have different experience. Different expertise. Their awesome sauce doesn’t taste quite like mine [side note: Kelis is now raging through my brain]. But in order for me to stand out, I not only have to differentiate, I have to HUSTLE.

So I hustled.

I would love for you to join me in LA at the 2014 Business of Yoga Conference sponsored by Yoga Alliance.  I will be hosting a breakout session discussing  The Affordable Care Act: Your Ticket to Abundance.

Yup. Everyday I’m hustlin.

Business, Yoga

8 Tips for Studio-Teacher Retention + Loyalty

This blog goes out to all of my studio owners out there.  If you want the best studio in your area, you have to attract, fill and retain teaching talent. Pretty simple, right? Not always.  Most teachers pay their bills by packing their schedule with classes taught at any number of studios.  While I don’t think that’s the best way to build a sustainable business as a yoga teacher, that’s for another blog post entirely.  For a studio to be off the charts successful, hell even if your goal is just to operate out of the red,  loyalty is essential for your success. I’m not talking about the loyalty of your students, right now I am talking about the loyalty of your teaching staff.

Let me take a moment here, take it back to my law school days and set up a little hypothetical:  

I stole and edited this image from http://musicorspaceshuttle.com/tag/indie-rock/
I stole and edited this image from http://musicorspaceshuttle.com/tag/indie-rock/

You’re the owner of Rockin Yoga Studio and you just hired Candace to teach a Vinyasa class. You didn’t give her the best time slot, but she’s new and of course she needs to prove herself to get the killer class times, right?  You decide to pay her a flat rate and a per head bonus for every additional student over a certain number, let’s say 10.   You verbally agree to the terms of “employment”, add Candace to the schedule and website.  Candace also teaches at Yoga Studio B and Yoga Studio C, both about 5 miles away in different directions.  You have no idea what the other studios pay Candace.  Candace is socially active in your town and very friendly. She can be seen chatting up strangers at the local health foods, store, juice bar and even Target.  You have no idea what Candace gets paid to teach at Studio B and Studio C.  You DO know that if she’s chatting up potential yoga students, you want them coming to your Rockin Yoga Studio.

How are you going to ensure that Candace is loyal to your Rockin Yoga Studio and not Studio B or Studio C?  You could make her sign a non-compete clause stating she won’t teach within a 20 mile radius of your Rockin Yoga Studio, but that’s not very yogic is it? You definitely don’t want to be known as the Rockin Yoga Studio owner asshole, right?  Remember, we need to come from a place of abundance, not scarcity.  {if you feel that a non-compete employment clause is the way to go for you, you best sweeten the deal by offering a banging salary, health insurance and retirement 401k options}.

This may sound like a bunch of business mumbo-jumbo, but DO NOT FORGET, you are in fact running a business! It’s essential to focus on hiring strategies, employee development and career succession and planning…even in yoga studios.  Most studios are not well prepared to fill vacancies in leaders of their teaching staff. Many can barely find last minute subs! By employing consistent, studio-wide “talent management programs” at all levels studios can develop effective teachers and ROI (that’s return on investment for the business acronym challenged). So here 8 tips to build studio-teacher retention and loyalty:

Live Your Brand.  This tip is my #1 go to for every question about the business of yoga. for a studio to flourish you need to determine your studio style, tap into your awesome sauce and ensure your studio is living its brand. Make sure the teachers you hire are aware of your studio personality (brand) and will meet its expectations. Do not forget to clearly articulate what your expectations are. If your studio is known for post class tea time, let your teachers know you expect them to mingle with the students after class for at least 20 minutes.  Set expectations so your teachers understand and can live your brand.

Identify the Gaps Will Rockin Yoga Studio be headed into the red if you pull your hamstring and can’t teach for a month or if your star teacher decides to up and move to Taos?  If so, that’s a big red flag.  You need to determine the studio’s current and future leadership needs. Compare those requirements with the current staff. Identify current teacher(s) that may be at risk as well as current teacher(s) that could step up to the plate in times of needs. How is your teaching pipeline, do you have a robust sub list?

Identify Your Teaching Talent It is important to gauge your teacher’s talent beyond the teaching audition to get the job. While you can probably decipher teacher popularity by running your class metrics through MindBody Online, you should also get regular feedback from your students and other staff members. Using this feedback you can develop the talent of your teachers.  By implementing competency modules for your teachers you can identify teaching potential as well as fill deficiencies. You can also implement a mentoring program by teaming up seasoned teachers with the less experienced. Competency modules and mentoring programs can also be used as a performance review, which is essential ensure teachers are keeping your students safe and developing their profession.

Develop Skills Roadmaps – once you have identified your high-potential teachers, develop a skills road map for your future superstar teachers. People learn and develop new skills inside and outside the studio. To support informal learning, you should consider activities such as coaching, rotational assignments, shadowing/mentorships and project (Seva) leaderships. At the core, the very definition of learning should reflect today’s non-traditional learning approaches and incorporate social networking tools into the process.

Staff Development Program To build loyalty and retention, it is essential for studios to give back to their teachers. The majority of studio owners give little thought to staff development and education.  Studio owners tend to be essentially non-linear in their thinking and business planning -they know they have to hire teachers and staff (usually as independent contractors, not full employees) and they see this as an expenditure or cost to their bottom line, when in actuality, their teachers and staff if developed properly are their greatest asset. The ROI on staff development is easily quantifiable.  It includes retention, morale, efficiency, competency and customer satisfaction. (could literally talk for hours about staff development and return on investment, so I’ll save the deeper insight for another blog post).

Career Development  – This is tied directly to the Staff Development Program. Career planning may not be something the average yoga teacher  or studio owner thinks about. We tend to live in the moment and possibly plan our next class, next workshop or next retreat. Thinking about it as a career is a switch that needs to be flipped. In a traditional business setting, research shows that companies that support career planning for their employees earn business benefits in both retention and engagement.  If your studio doesn’t provide employees with career planning, someone else will.  Self-service career planning will help motivate and retain talent by empowering them to generate a view with a career plan.

Develop Retention + Rewards Programs – If there’s one thing every yoga teacher has in common, it’s our insatiable desire to learn more about everything yoga. Every single teacher out there wants to continue to learn and develop their skills, and they’ll move mountains to be able to afford to do so. – offer trainings, workshop scholarships etc. linking pay to performance can be a strong employee motivator (paying per student) , however goal  alignment may hep potential leaders stay focused on what is important for the studio. Recognize excellence in performance with a retention program., base the upside of any bonus potential on the success of both the company and the student.

Create Community – Your studio doesn’t simply serve your students.  If there’s one thing you need to remember, it’s that your studio is also a kula for your teachers and staff. As with any relationship, familial or otherwise, you need to foster its connection. Schedule regular staff meetings.  Implement quarterly staff events and trainings. Give your teachers a reason to be loyal to your Rockin Yoga Studio.

YHC Yoga Teachers Family '10.
YHC Yoga Teachers Family ’10.

You will notice that each of the above tips on building studio-teacher retention + loyalty all build from one another. One grows from the next and each are important. If Candace knew your Rockin Yoga Studio was there to foster her skills as a teacher, was interested in her career development and had her back like a family member don’t you think she’d be pimpin out your Rockin Yoga Studio in Whole Foods instead of Studio B or C?

Do you use any of these strategies for teacher retention? Do they work for you?  I’d love to hear from you!

Business

Stick With It!!

How to Stick to Your Goals and Stay Motivated

Have you ever been working your way toward a goal that you really wanted to achieve, only to suddenly lose your way? How does that happen?

When you’re working toward a goal, it’s not enough to simply want it. Even if it’s the attainment of your life’s dream, you have to keep yourself constantly motivated or else you won’t stick with it. Here are some tips on how to stay on course and make it happen.

Keep Your Momentum

An object at rest stays at rest. That’s what Isaac Newton discovered and it’s just as true about human beings as it is with physical objects. It’s easy to give up a goal when you take too long of a break from it. The momentum you need to keep going comes from taking action toward your goal daily.

Faltering Confidence

If you have a big goal, the fear of failure might be lurking somewhere in the back of your mind. This can cause problems with your confidence that can result in you falling out of step and giving up. The best way to keep your confidence up is to remember your past successes and achievements. Write these down and keep them handy in case you need them

Consider the Evidence

In just the same way, it helps keep you moving when you can see how much progress you’re making. Keep track of your progress and every time you feel like giving up, look at the evidence. If you’re losing weight, keep records of how much you’ve lost. If you’re saving money, look at the growing pile of cash.

Make It Positive

Positivity is a much better motivator than negativity. If your goal is to get out of your current job, quit smoking, or break your bad habits, try to put a positive spin on it. For example, instead of saying you’ll quit smoking, make your goal to become a non-smoker or to make healthier lifestyle choices. Negative motivators can help, but it’s much better to make the main overall goal a positive one.

Get Around Obstacles

There are always going to be roadblocks along the way and these obstacles can stop you dead in your tracks. It’s easy to let them. But an obstacle is really nothing more than a challenge. What it requires is a change of strategy and that’s all. When you get stuck and feel that you can’t move forward, review your goal and the process you’ve created for getting there. Brainstorm some small changes that you can try out.

Learn from Mistakes

When you mess up and make a mistake (or you’re weak and let yourself slip), don’t beat yourself up about it. Instead, separate yourself from the situation and look at it objectively. Why did the mistake happen? Where did it come from? Look closely at it and use it as a learning experience.

Ask for Help

Lots of people try to do everything themselves and avoid asking for help even when they need it. It’s incredibly hard to achieve a goal without any support whatsoever. When you first get started, identify some people who can help you. When you have tough times, turn to them.

Don’t forget as you work your way to the attainment of your goals that you need rewards. It’s not enough to always anticipate the big day when the goal is reached. Schedule rewards for yourself after you complete your tasks or reach your sub-goals. Rewards are the best motivators. Besides, you deserve them.

In the words of my favorite mentor, Marie Forleoeverything is figureoutableset a goal

Business

Get Out Of Your Own Way

What’s Stopping You from Setting Goals?

Do you have a goal that you want to achieve but something is standing in the way? I have lots of goals..and let me be honest here, 9 times out of 10 the biggest thing standing in my way is ME.  If you’ve found that you’re the biggest thing in your way, here are some questions to ask yourself.

Are You Afraid?

Often, it’s fear that’s stopping you from getting started. In order to reach your goal and make a big change in your life, you need to get out of your comfort zone. You may also be afraid of failure. Surprisingly, many people are afraid to succeed and attain their goals. The way to handle fear is to plan well, stop negative self-talk, and focus on your past achievements rather than what could happen in the future.

Do You Really Want It?

When you answer this question honestly, it can be an eye-opener. You may discover that you’re not ready yet to make the change. Sometimes we like the idea of attaining our goal better than the reality. The best way to find out if this is the case is to realistically consider all that you’ll have to do to achieve your goal. Listen to the stories of others who have done it and ask yourself if it’s worth it to you.

Is It Somebody Else’s Goal?

Is the goal actually your own or is it someone else’s? It’s very common for us to internalize the things others want for us. The other person may be a family member, a romantic partner, or people at work. When the goal isn’t really yours to begin with, it’s much easier to buckle under pressure when things get tough. Ask yourself if it’s what you really want or what they really want.

Are You Too Busy?

Do you really have the time to fit this goal into your life right now? Attaining any worthwhile goal takes a considerable amount of time. Many of us are ‘time poor’ and just don’t have room for it. You can learn how to manage your time better and shift your schedule around, but sometimes even that doesn’t help. Set a realistic timeframe for your goal and figure out what you’ll need to do each day in order to achieve it.

How to Get Started

Probably the biggest thing that stops people from starting on their goals is that they don’t know where to start. Goal planning is a skill just like any other and most of us aren’t good at it.

Start by clarifying what you want and then set a timeframe for when you want to achieve it. Next, break your big goal into small sub-goals and make a list for each of the actions you need to take to achieve them. Organize your goal setting but leave some room for flexibility too because things change along the way.

Cowgirl up

Need to play a little catch up?

Failure Sucks, Dude
Creating Time Frames + Being flexible in Goal Setting
Dream + Hustle
Keep it Real: Goal Planning and Taking Action
Learning to Love Metrics
The Dirty Details.
Lets Go, Smarty Pants.
Ready Set Goal!
Resolutions Suck, Goal Setting is Awesome!

Business, Inspiration

Failure Sucks, Dude

4 Surefire Ways to Fail at Reaching Your Goals

Napoleon Hill said, ‘A goal is a dream with a deadline.’ Are you great at dreaming but not so good at attaining your goals? I could dream up business ideas and strategy for days. I literally have 100s of URLs and journals filled with the next amazing thing. It took me a long time to figure out how to tap into that talent and transfer it into a service. Once I did, the Darshana Collective was born, the company is flourishing and I am finally getting paid for something I am naturally good at – creative, organizational, business strategy for yoginis.  I failed a bunch of times before I got it right. The reason I got it right this time? I set strategic goals. Once I got strategic about it, the walls came down and everything fell into place.

If you’re stuck dreaming, and not doing, something is holding you back. Here are four of the most common reasons why people fail to reach their goals.

1. The Reason Gets Away from You

It takes a long time to reach your goals. During that time, it’s easy to stray from the real reason why you ever wanted to achieve it in the first place. In fact, you may very well forget it entirely.

How do you keep from doing this? A great way is to write this reason down. Ask yourself why you want to make this change and answer it as honestly as possible. Take that piece of paper and keep it with you constantly. Tuck it in your wallet. Look at it every time you have to bust out your ATM card to pay for something. Reminders are key!!

You may also find your motivation to reach the goal waning, especially when you encounter challenges along the way. Keeping a written statement of why you want to achieve your goal keeps that initial excitement with you to push you forward.

2. Too Much on Your Plate

The expression ‘Jack of all trades, master of none’ applies to goal planning as well as many other things in life. If you try to take on too many things at once, you’ll be spending your energy all over the place. You won’t have the focus that you need to reach even one, and you’ll most likely burn out quickly. Be laser focused in your passion.

But what can you do if you’re an ambitious person with lots on your plate? The solution is to make a huge list of goals and just pick one. Work on one until you get comfortable with it and start seeing results. Then, you can add the next goal to your already busy schedule.

3. Choking on Negativity

Often, we fall short of what we want because we focus too much on negatives. You think about what you don’t want or where you don’t want to be, instead of visualizing yourself in a good place in the future.  If you’re not sure visualization is powerful, check out my friend Lana Shlafer. She’s a master at manifestation and visualization techniques.  I am not one for pudding, but the proof is there.

If your goal is to get more private clients, stop thinking about the ones you don’t have right now. Sure, it may be a good motivator to get you job hunting; but the negative thinking it’s causing you can stand in your way. Instead, focus on the wonderful new job you’re going to get.

4. Kill the Fear

Many of us fail to make progress on our goals because of fear, which is perfectly natural. If you’ve got a big goal you’re working toward, there’s a good chance it’s something you’ve never done before, and that can be terrifying.

When you’re afraid, it’s usually because you doubt your abilities. But with proper planning, this isn’t an issue at all. If you break your goals down into sub-goals and daily actions that will get you closer to them, it just becomes a matter of logistics. A good plan with concrete steps helps you overcome fear.

5. Take Action Today

Ultimately the main reason we fail at goals is that we fail to take action. This could be because of the fear mentioned above or for other reasons, but it’s essential to do something each day that gets you closer to your goals. This helps you understand your own abilities and skills better, and it gives you more confidence when you see yourself getting closer to getting what you want.

Kill the fear

Need to play a little catch up?

Creating Time Frames + Being flexible in Goal Setting
Dream + Hustle
Keep it Real: Goal Planning and Taking Action
Learning to Love Metrics
The Dirty Details.
Lets Go, Smarty Pants.
Ready Set Goal!
Resolutions Suck, Goal Setting is Awesome!