October 4, 2013

Why Yoga Teachers are Poor: Overcoming the Plague of Limiting Beliefs. ~ Taylor Jacobson

“Watch your thoughts, they become words;
Watch your words, they become actions;
Watch your actions, they become habits;
Watch your habits, they become character;
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”

~ Unknown

All the yoga teachers I know are poor.

Teachers like Elise*, who works in one of Boston’s top studios but has two jobs and lives with her mother. And, like Alan*, whose every weekend is booked doing teacher trainings yet can’t afford to upgrade his website, built circa 2005.

These two are no exception. Healers of all kinds, from acupuncturists to ayurveds and holistic nutritionists struggle to make ends meet, earning less than $40,000 in even the rosiest cases.

Most people jump to the conclusion that society simply does not value healing work. But the health and wellness industry is a behemoth, at nearly $2 trillion as of 2010. The money is there.

If you’re a healer who struggles with money, what’s holding you back is likely nothing external—it’s your own limiting beliefs about money.

The Plague Of Limiting Beliefs

Yoga teachers and other healers suffer from a unique set of thought patterns and beliefs about money. For example: Business is for superficial people; business exploits people; my integrity will be compromised; selling is manipulative and dishonest; I’m not good at business—I’m a healer type.

Money doesn’t buy happiness, so I don’t want it. I value the simple things in life. I can’t charge money for this—it’s my passion. People won’t pay big money for this kind of thing.

These limiting beliefs are the root problem and like all limiting beliefs, they are created to protect us from our root human fears.

In a world where these beliefs are held as truths, we avoid the possibility of failure that becomes inevitable when we set ambitious goals, goals such as creating a thriving business.

To the ego, failure is death.

So long as you believe that business is bad, you never have to face this fear.

Sadly, these beliefs also limit you by creating a false choice between doing healing work and creating personal wealth.

Not only is money not evil, it is also a powerful platform for your own wellness and ability to support others.

If you feel an objection crying out inside of you, there’s a good chance that you have a limiting belief related to money. In other words, you’re blocking your ability to create wealth.

There’s More At Stake Than Your Paycheck.

This shift isn’t just about you.

The first and more immediate benefit of charging what you’re worth is that you create a more stable and powerful platform to reach more people with your work. When you’re hustling to scrape together the rent, you can’t spare a minute to work on building your business. You are stuck forever working in your business—teaching classes, preparing the space, searching for clients.

You have no time to work on your business—building your brand, creating a compelling online presence, developing new material, reaching out to potential partners and collaborators.

You may not have a goal to become a celebrity teacher, published author or renowned speaker in your field. But, if you never graduate beyond the hustle, you are robbing the world of your gifts. The more you build your platform, the more people have an opportunity to receive what you offer.

The second, broader benefit of developing your business is that you help infuse the business world with the sustainable values of the healer community.

Today, celebrity healers are outliers. What if we had more healers like Louise Hay, Wayne Dyer and Martha Beck, people who built enterprises with the clout to reach into our collective consciousness?

Imagine the societal shift that could happen if yoga philosophy were more embedded in mass media.

Rich Yoga Teachers: What Will it Take?

What will it take for healers to start making money?

The key step is for healers to see themselves as entrepreneurs and innovators.

The yoga studio is not the only business model in the world, and there’s no law that says you need an MBA to do well in business.

Oprah began as a journalist but was able to build an empire because she was able to see past pre-defined opportunities. She used the power of business to give full expression to the healing value she has to offer.

The power of business is available to all of us, including you, if you’re willing to let go of your limiting beliefs.

Like Elephant Yoga on Facebook.

Assistant Ed: Steph Richard/Ed: Bryonie Wise

{Photo via: FinancialTimes.com}

{*Names have been changed.}

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