Tagged: Health

TR Profile: Yoga for the Arts

Nicole Lotus FluteI love to feature artists on this blog who are passionately sharing their art and/or craft with others by means of their own entrepreneurship. Several months ago, I had the pleasure of being introduced to Nicole Newman, founder of Yoga for the Arts. After five minutes of conversation, I knew that I had to share Nicole’s work with all of my readers.

So what is Yoga for the Arts exactly? It’s stated mission reads:

 “Yoga for the Arts combats performance-related injuries and anxieties, which undermine confidence and performance potential. Yoga for the Arts is about preventing the preventable and early intervention through changes in habit. Artists are empowered to take ownership of their health by fully inhabiting their bodies through breath-centered yoga sequences, tailored to meet the individual’s specific needs and goals.”

When speaking with Nicole, I was captivated by her passion and commitment for the fusion of entrepreneurship with artistic training. While interviewing Nicole for this profile, I came to understand that for her, creativity and imagination drive both her artistry and business. I asked her to describe the moment when she came to realize that she needed to pursue an entrepreneurial path in order for her to find career fulfillment.

“I became an entrepreneur out of a deeply rooted conviction to help the countless musicians who unnecessarily endure debilitating performance-related pain and injury. A coherent health and wellness curricula for musicians does not currently exist, in spite of the very real need. I am responding to this unmet need – especially for young musicians, where early intervention is paramount.”

Filling the gaps that result in the absence of a well-rounded approach to a musician/performer’s training was an area of common ground between Nicole and myself. On this blog and in many public forums I have both spoken and written about the importance of building a complete ‘toolbox’ of strategies, skills, and resources that musicians can draw upon when they leave school and enter the world as professional artists.  I asked Nicole how Yoga for the Arts fits in the larger structure for the need of “life skills” in a musician’s training.

 “In addition to being an accomplished performer, the modern musician must excel in marketing, sales, networking, opportunity evaluation, mental fortitude and time management skills, just to have a chance of earning a living. Unfortunately, health and wellness falls to the wayside, to the detriment of all their other responsibilities. A simple approach to preventative wellness, however, can easily fit into a daily routine, but it needs to be made a priority and taught in concert with the other mandatory skills to create a sustainable career.”

As I usually close my profiles on The Tuxedo Revolt Blog, I like to ask my guests if there is any advice they’d like to share with readers about their entrepreneurial/artistic experience. Nicole has 5 tips to share with you:

1. Answer the 10 Questions inspired by Guy Kawasaki:

  • What is the problem?
  • What is the solution?
  • How big is the market?
  • What makes it so special? (Find the underlying magic of your solution and package it in your 30-second pitch.)
  • What is the competition?
  • What exactly is your business model?
  • How exactly will you make sales?
  • Have you assembled a qualified team?
  • How will you secure required resources?
  • What are you proposing for an investment?

2. Network relentlessly. Tell everyone – even people who you think have no connection to your market.
3. Take reasonable risks and embrace failing forward.
4. Know how to pivot and innovate to readjust your business by listening to your clients, not your critics. (Tip: Read the subtleties of your clients’ micro-expressions)
5. Give back. What goes around comes around. You will find that paying it forward not only spreads the word – it contributes to your growth as an entrepreneur.

“And, as my teacher in India avows, “Be strong. Don’t fear. Lift higher.”

Thanks for stopping by to read today’s Tuxedo Revolt Blog post. I have more profiles planned in the coming months.

Stay tuned,



4 Ways to Deal With Criticism– and Win.

from www.chic-type.comAs a performing artist, you are going to face opposition. Sometimes it can be constructive, sometimes you may want to crawl under a rock. Criticism may come from others, and more often than not, it may come from within you. When you are faced with criticisms coming at you from many sources at once you have a choice: either be blown away or lean into the wind.

That’s right, you have the power to decide how you will let criticism affect you. Most people don’t know this. For some reason, so many artists immediately defer to their critics rather than simply not accept the criticism.  Very few of us know that we don’t have to validate someone else’s criticism. Today, we’ll look at some powerful tools with which you can protect your artistic growth and integrity in a storm of tough criticism.

4 Ways to Deal With Criticism:

1. Consider the source. This is best way to protect yourself from 90% of negative criticism. Don’t let people who have no influence over you or your career make decisions for you. Ask yourself, does this person have a personal stake in your long-term success? If the answer is no, then don’t give them the time of day. If the answer is yes, move to step no. 2…

2. Strip the criticism of emotion. Take out a sheet of paper, and write the criticism down. For example, after slaving away for a lesson, your teacher might say to you–

“Please don’t come to your lesson without having looked at your music. Don’t waste my time.”

Now let’s get rid of the emotional content:

“Please don’t come to your lesson without having looked at your music. Don’t waste my time.”  

3. Take the “meat” of the criticism and explore it. Clearly there was a misunderstanding about how much work you put into your lesson preparation. This is where you make your decision– either you kill your momentum by letting your teacher upset you or you turn this into an opportunity for your growth.

4. The last step in the process is to be proactive. Harsh criticism can become toxic to us if they go unchecked for a long time. They sit in the dark recesses of our self-concept and seep out negative thoughts. Don’t allow the situation to get like that! Confront your critics. Ask them to explain themselves and fully outline their criticism. If they can’t defend it, then you don’t have to acknowledge it.

Try to employ these 4 steps the next time you encounter some harsh words from others. You’ll find that when you gain the ability to disregard only but the most meaningful and constructive critiques, you will find yourself in a much happier place. Remember, critics can be tough, but you can always be tougher.

Stay tuned,