Jamie Kalynuik had a dream to open her own yoga studio. After becoming a doula and a yoga teacher while working her day job in marketing, she made her dream a reality. In 2012, Jamie opened Toronto Yoga Mamas, a studio that caters to the needs of pregnant moms, new moms and their babies. In the following Q & A, Jamie talks about how physical health affects her financial health – and vice versa
Q & A
You are in the wellness business, but do you make time to be fit yourself?
Absolutely, I make it a priority. When I’m physically fit, I notice a huge difference in my energy. When I’m not, I’m slow and sluggish and my motivation levels are lower. As soon as I rebalance my health routine, get back on the yoga mat, get back to eating healthy and get back into the gym, my energy level increases. I’m more motivated and I’m more positive.
How does that positivity help you at work?
I’m a happier person when I’m feeling strong and healthy, and I bring that happiness and positive attitude into the studio with me. It helps the overall work environment and it rubs off on other members of the team. It allows us to overcome challenges together. And my clients feel it too, which makes them want to come back more often.
Your business does seem like it’s growing. Do you attribute that to your own wellness?
The two are linked, for sure. When I’m healthy, I have the stamina to build the business every day and keep up a fast pace. Plus, I concentrate better and have more clarity, which helps me avoid getting lost in the details so I can focus on how to create the best experience for moms.
What about during hard times? Growing a business must have its ups and downs.
Sure, like any line of work, I encounter challenges, but when I’m in a healthy routine, I can tackle them from a place of positivity, a place of strength. I surprise myself sometimes with how physically strong I can be, whether on the yoga mat or in the gym. And that sense of strength gives me a high that I carry into the rest of my day. If I’m feeling strong moving through the day, I take on challenges from a different place.
It sounds like there’s also a mental and emotional factor here that supports your financial success.
Mental fitness is a big part of it. I need to be present, mindful and accepting. Being mentally fit allows me to accept things as they come, instead of pushing against them. I’m able to put things into perspective and align my decisions with the overall goals of the studio, rather than out of fear or anger or other less constructive emotions.
Would you say your financial health affects your physical health.
For me, uncertainty is a big source of stress, so being aware of where I’m at makes me feel a lot better. I’m doing things actively now on the financial front that are helping me in the long run and that gives me peace of mind. It gives me a sense of calm, a sense of control over my finances and over my life, so I feel more grounded.
So you’re relaxed about your finances?
I wouldn’t say I’m relaxed – I’m prepared. I maintain a tight budget. I have cash flow statements for both the business and myself personally where I project out the next 12 months. I make sure my personal and business finances are on track. The only way to do this is to be aware of what you’re budgeting and spending.
What’s the best thing about having your finances in order?
I never have to wonder if I can afford something – I always know if I can or can’t buy it. And so I’m able to spend my money, without guilt, on things that I need and want. I’m able to invest in my health and happiness. Because I know where my finances are at, I know that I can take time off at work, whether that’s taking vacations and walking away from the business or taking time off to see my family. It allows me freedom to spend time with people I love.
The views and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily imply endorsement by Manulife.