Jess Lynn: Yogapreneur
If I told you that you were capable of becoming anything you wanted, would you believe me?
As women we tend to underestimate ourselves and what we are capable of accomplishing. Somewhere along the way it has become ingrained in us that it is okay to take a backseat to other people, priorities and projected timelines deemed important by society and the role we are expected to fill. You have permission to be unapologetically you. My name is Jess Lynn and I want to share with you how following my passions led me on an incredible journey from corporate finance to freelance yoga.
Explore early on
I graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Finance and went off to my first post-grad job working in mutual funds at J.P. Morgan. Although I loved the job, it wasn’t enough and I left soon after I began for State Street Bank chasing the almighty dollar. Same job, same position, higher pay. I still wasn’t satisfied in my career, I started to feel very unappreciated and it became suffocating that I couldn’t advance due to a very male dominated environment. I took a leap of faith and decided to find something that made me want to jump out of bed in the morning.
Through networking in the city, I met a woman who would take me under her proverbial wing and teach me about marketing and public relations. I quickly gained vast knowledge and a client base but got left again with the feeling that it still wasn’t enough. One client owned a retail shop in Beacon Hill and took me on as a manager as well as handling the marketing side of the business. Retail ran through my veins because that was my family business and so this position resonated with every fiber of my being. Within 2 years I branched out and built my own corporation.
Trust your GUT
By the age of 28, I accomplished everything I thought I wanted to do. The business had grown from a little shoe store into an actual retail brand carrying a cosmetic line I crafted, shoes I designed, apparel, etc. Shortly after, I was burnt out and decided to switch gears again. I took time off and traveled in search of what I really wanted, what would really be fulfilling as a long time career.
With that, I felt my love of yoga (which I started to practice in 1999) would make me feel whole again. After completing multiple certifications, I kept my teaching as a “jobby,” a hobby that pays a little money. I re-entered the workforce, this time in hospitality (building and collaborating on establishments in the Hamptons and Miami) I decided I would just go for it and see what I could make of myself.
Despite the naysayers, I knew it made me feel the most authentic and alive when I was helping others so I just kept knocking on every door and reaching out to everyone who would listen. You never know who is willing to take a chance on you unless you ask. And now, nearly 10 years later, I have an established career I am passionate about that is still evolving and growing on a daily basis.
PREPARE FOR THE LEAP
The leap from a nice cushy job with a salary and benefits to being a yoga instructor with an undetermined income was terrifying. To prepare for such a change, I made sure that I saved enough money to cover my rent and expenses for a few months just in case I didn’t land any paying clients. Rightly so, I spent the first 6 months teaching free classes anywhere I could just to get my name out there and to connect with people.
It’s important to note that making a career change does not mean that your previous experiences go to waste. There’s a way to repurpose the skills you already developed in your new venture. The skills I acquired from my previous jobs were exactly the tools I needed to be a successful entrepreneur.
My background in marketing came in handy as I reconnected with clients to teach corporate classes and worked to create brand awareness.
The years I spent in finance played a role in managing my own business expenses, budgeting, and even being responsible for my own accounting.
The time I spent in public relations was incredibly important as I had learned how to get recognized on a broader scale and most importantly outside of just the town I lived in.
When I look back on it now, each step, every job, every role, every person I met along the way played a role in my success. At the time, everyone was concerned and had no idea what would become of me because I was a workaholic who just couldn’t get her fix. But we are all on our own journey and allowing yourself to explore and find what feels right to you is how you find your passion.
Some people are lucky and they know from a young age, and some are like me, wandering and experiencing and touching everything we can until we meet our hearts content. I would not change a single step in my journey because it led me to where I am today. Embrace the good and the bad, because it’s all just experience and when you finally get to the end, it will all make sense.
Jessica is currently teaching fitness and yoga online through Socialive.tv (www.socialive.tv) as well as hosting private clients in-home and online. She continues to life coach and specializes in helping men and women achieve balance in their lives. She has over 8 years of experience with clients reaching optimal health through changes in lifestyle, nutrition, movement, career and environment. More info available on her site.