Today Krystal from The Luscious Life is here to share how she made the transition from scientist to a yoga therapist!
Tell us about yourself, what you did pre-escape, and what you do now
I am a reformed and recovering environmental scientist. I had been working for government on and off for years. Every few years I would need to at least try to escape, but it was never sustainable. So I decided this time to make it a sustainable switch. I ended up getting the most coveted job, a permanent job with the federal government, and for 3 years built my yoga therapy business up on the side.
I am now working full-time as a professional yoga therapist and I couldn’t love it more. I see my move to being a yoga therapist as a natural progression from an environmental scientist. I chose environmental science because I want to help make the world a better place for those that do not have a voice: the water, the air, the land. But after years of working in that way, I realized that those who needed the most help were the humans, so now I am working to make the world a better place by helping humans through yoga therapy.
How long ago did you make the escape?
I fully broke free March 1, 2014. My last official day at the government was actually spent on vacation in Maui at the beach with my besties.
What roadblocks did you face when preparing to leave your job?
My biggest roadblocks were mental. I knew I didn’t want to repeat the mistakes I had made before when I had jumped out of government and into the unknown without a clear plan. But even though I spent three years building a pretty successful side business I was very afraid to leave my guaranteed paycheck behind. Money and debt were my biggest concerns.
How did you know you were ready?
Before I knew I was really ready a friend came to me with a plan to live at a cabin in the woods for a month and write music. Music! Not even yoga or anything to do with my business. I loved the idea and miraculously the universe brought a cabin my way THE VERY NEXT DAY! And it was FREE!!! And I could stay as long as I want! So I felt like I couldn’t use money as an excuse. I had a free place to stay for as long as I wanted.
But I was still afraid and delaying my escape as long as I could, when one day I went for one of my regular acupuncture appointments. My acupuncturist is also an escape artist, having left behind government a few years ago and then never looked back. He is wildly successful. So he called me out on all my delay tactics (we have that kind of relationship), but I still pushed back asserting, “I just don’t feel ready! I don’t feel it in my body! I don’t know what else to say.”
The appointment proceeds as usual and I feel good afterwards, but nothing had changed on the escape plan front until…. I woke up the next morning and the energy in every single cell in my body had changed. I am not sure what he did, but it was done. I was different. I walked into work that morning knowing that I would be handing in my resignation. Nothing had changed financially. None of the fears or roadblocks had disappeared. I just had the energy of every cell on my body changed through acupuncture and that’s how I knew I was ready.
What is the best part of being your own boss?
I am creating the life I want to live in every single way. I love getting to make all the decisions and only being accountable to me. I love not being held back from going big and going after everything I want. Part of living my dream life is planning yoga retreats in Mexico, Maui, Bali, Italy…
What challenges have come up?
The biggest challenge has been to not work 24/7 and to not think and stress out about work 24/7. Being really strict with work hours and making sure every day included social time and me time definitely helped in the beginning.
What are your work days like now?
Now I find my workdays to be much more fluid. I have been doing this for almost a year and half and I finally feel like I am settling into the rhythm of working for myself, which is of course so different from working for the government. I can now allow myself to enjoy an afternoon swim and not feel guilty and I also see that it actually makes me more productive and efficient. My days are full of so many exciting and new experiences. I am always learning and I thrive on that.
Any advice for those working to make the escape as well?
If you are like me and you need to have a clear plan and some solid business numbers before you will feel comfortable try building your business on the side for a bit. See if you can cut back on your hours at your regular job, so you can put more time into your passion for a few years. Once you have that clear business plan and have safely tested the waters, don’t be afraid to try something a little different to shake up your perspective. Travel somewhere new. Begin a meditation practice. You could even try acupuncture. Hey, it worked for me!