10: How to Align Your Yoga Studio with Human Psychology

yoga human psychology

What Is This Episode About…

In this episode, we are going to talk about 4 out of the 6 basic human needs that every entrepreneur should understand and endeavor to satisfy with their business to always stay ahead of their competition and sustain a low attrition rate.

These 4 key things that your yoga studio must satisfy are…

▶️ Certainty

▶️ Variability

▶️ Significance

▶️ Connection 

Every business, not just Yoga Studios, MUST satisfy these 4 key elements of human psychology. 

Humans seem to be complex creatures but if you step back and look at the fundamental needs, we are actually quite basic. Your entire business should be built around satisfying these and when you accomplish that, your business will grow faster than you could ever imagine. We’ll dive into how you can structure your studio to tap into these 4 areas and create an ideal experience for your customers.

Key Points Discussed:

  • The most important basic human needs every business should satisfy   (00:54)
  • Classes that offer certainty and variability (03:25)
  • The high attrition rate in the yoga studio business (05:35)
  • Giving students the feeling of significance (08:22)
  • Being authentic in this social media world (12:23)


Learn More About The Content Discussed…

Join The Facebook Group –> http://bit.ly/yogaentrepreneur

When Was It Released…

This episode was released August 28, 2019

Episode Transcript…

Disclaimer: The Transcript Is Auto-Generated And May Contain Spelling And Grammar Errors


00:00          Certainty, variability or novelty, significance, connection, and love. These are the basic needs that as yoga entrepreneurs, as really, any entrepreneur, any business owner, we need to understand if you’re touching on these basic needs, you’re satisfying them on a level that they’re not getting in most places.


00:26          What’s up everyone? You are listening to Yoga Entrepreneur Secrets. I am Chris Yax, and I’m John Yax. We are part of a small group of yoga entrepreneurs who are committed to making a living, doing what we love, without feeling guilty about making money, or ashamed of being successful, because we know the real value of yoga and how the world needs it now more than ever. This podcast is here to teach the strategies and tactics so we can thrive financially as yoga entrepreneurs. We are the Yax brothers and welcome to Yoga Entrepreneur Secrets.


00:54          So, I was listening to Tony Robbin’s podcast a while ago, and he was talking about six basic needs of humans. And, the four… most people are kind of living on the four first, and so we’re going to talk about that. But what struck me when I was listening to him describe these is, is that, these are the basic needs that as yoga entrepreneurs, as really any entrepreneur, any business owner, we need to understand, because when people come into your business, when they’re… when you’re offering your service to them, if you’re touching on these four basic needs, you’re satisfying them on a level that they’re not getting in most places. And so, the four basic needs, they’re six, we’re just gonna talk about the first four today, are… the first is consistency. It’s kind of our control thing, right? We… consistency, but more certainty, right? We want to know what’s going to happen every single day.


01:55          This is why you love your patterns, right? Because you know, when you get up in the morning, you’re going to do X, Y, and Z. Every morning X, Y, and Z. This is… there’s a feeling of comfort. The next one, it’s kind of converse to the first one. It’s we want variability. We want the novelty, we want the shift, the change. We love that piece. And some of us lean into one of those more than the other. Some of us are just die-hard in wanting consistency and some of us are diehards, and wanting variability. Right? The next one after those two, the next one insignificance or status. We want to feel like we… there’s a… that we matter. That we matter, right? We’ve… that we’re significant. That people recognize that we’re… we’re meaningful in this world. Right? That we have a … There’s a bigger part of us, and that we want people to know that there’s a bigger part of us.


02:38          We feel significant. Essentially we want to be seen. Right? We want to see and be seen. The last… really not the last one, but… but the last one wants to talk about is connection and love. So, certainty, variability or novelty, significance, connection, and love. And so, just right off the face value of that, you’re like, “Okay. So, how do set up my business to have certainty, to have variability, to have significance for people, and to connect and love?” And you’re like, right off the face value, you’re like, “Man, I think yoga is all about connection and love.” Right? We got that in spades. Right? Yeah. So, in the last episode, what we talked about was like what’s your style? And we were saying like, if you get out of the world of styles, which is always like, “I’m better than you. Your… my style is better than your style.”


03:25          Or like you get stuck in traditional styles and then all of a sudden you’re stuck in this way of being that may or may not support the success of your studio and or your business. And what we talked about was like to look at it from that 30,000 foot view of like what’s the methodology? Right. And so when we were kind of want to dovetail off of that a little bit and talk more about as far as these knees are concerned, how do we set up our classes so that it fulfills those first two needs where there is certainty and there’s variability? Well we have two styles that we teach. We call it stability and then we have flow Miata and Vinyasa for, are you a Sanskrit for [inaudible] nurse? So our stability classes don’t change. Every single stability class that somebody comes to in our studios is the exact same.


04:18          Now the teacher brings a different experience, right, and I say that. What I mean by that is they bring a different theme, a different story, a different message into each class. They may emphasize a little bit, they may emphasize something, a part of the class more so than another part of the class, but essentially every single class is the same. This sequence is the same. You cannot extract the humanity from every single teacher. Every person is unique in how they present the information and their voice is totally different. The energy they bring, are they more commanding? Are they soft, are they more nurturing or are they more assertive? Like all of that is embedded in being human. But what we’re saying is the certainty that people can rest their heads on when they come into the studio is they know that the sequence they’re getting, regardless of the teacher is going to be the same.


05:02          Now think about that as beginner. When you’re coming in to try to learn something and you come to a class and every single class is the same, think about the results that they’re getting, how fast they can learn and understand what they’re doing, right? They’re progression skyrockets as opposed to coming to a class that’s different every single time that the teachers just from shooting from the hip, we’re going to do this pose and this pose and this and this and this, and there’s no traction for that new student to be able to learn what they’re doing and think about this. The rate of attrition over a year for most studios is upwards of 80% attrition. Meaning people are leaving, they are not coming back. 80% of the people that are with you right now will not be with you in a year. That’s pretty big and what that means is that the majority of people that are coming in are new.


05:52          They need consistency. They need something that gives them that that is the same single time so that they can create a practice. This is vital. They have to understand how to create a practice and unless they’re going to go into privates and do something one-on-one and really build it from the ground up, which is really challenging, right? Maybe expensive for some people to do. They need a class that offers that. Now you may be saying, well, I offer a one beginner class or two beginner classes a week. How do I use endow? Does anybody get any traction with once or twice a week? And so what you’re also probably thinking if you lean more into the second human need is, oh my God, that would just drive me crazy. Having the same exact sequence every single time. Shoot me in the head and that’s why we have flow.


06:37          Now the flow class is the class that it changes. The sequence is not the same every single time. Now what is the same? Is the methodology that we talked about in the last episode, right? The way in which we sequence to open up the body in the way that it’s designed to be open is the same, but how each teacher approaches that is unique so you get introduced to different poses. You get introduced to different transitions, you get the experience of variability, the experience of novelty, of seeing opposed of being, of seeing a transition that you may have never done before and then there is the second need fulfilled and so and what that does, that flow class, what it also provides is a stepping stone for our students to say, okay, listen, we have beginner classes by the way, we have every single day for half of the classes, every single day, morning, noon and night.


07:35          We have an opportunity for you to take a beginner level class. What’s beautiful about that class is we’ve been open, we’ve had studios for 15 plus years and we have students who have been practicing for that amount of time if not longer, and they still take quote unquote those beginner level classes because the amount of progression within each pose itself, it’s almost limitless. I just think about like one pose that you started with when you were like just beginning out and the journey that you have gone on in that one pose from the very beginning to the intermediate to the advanced and then you get to the advanced. It’s not like it ends now, it’s about daily maintenance. Now it’s about understanding where your edge of that day is and do you want to be more muscular and more engaged or more open and try to go a little bit deeper.


08:22          And so like it’s just limitless. So what we’re saying is we provided the first need with the class that does not change and its sequence. We provided the second need of with a flow class where now they get variability, they get novelty, they get changes in the sequence. And now how do you provide? The third need? Significance comes when people continue to practice and they get better at the poses themselves. They’re obviously in a room with other people. Lots of times when people are watching, some were like, no, pay attention to your practice, but a lot of times people are so when they go to another level in the pose, they get this, that a girl or that a boy right there. Fellow Yogi said, wow, I just saw you do that next thing. That was amazing. Or as teachers in the class we can say, Hey Chris, that was awesome.


09:09          Good job. They give that oxytocin, that spurt of a of, okay, I feel like I just made that next level. Along with what Chris said, in the beginning, is when they walk into our studios, we say, hey, how are you Susan? How are you doing that? We call them out by name. It makes them feel okay. I feel like I’m significant. I’m, there’s that level of, I call it status for lack of a better term, but it’s that feeling of like, okay, I matter. People are paying attention. They see me, right. They see me and that is huge for people. The last piece I was like, oh we have it in space but not all studios do. The connection piece, the love piece, connection and love and what that really means is the feeling of belonging. Right. The feeling that when you walk into a studio, when you see people you know that you feel at home and it’s unfortunate I think, I don’t know if like I was about to say, I think like most studios could do better at that but I don’t really know.


10:07          Like for us we just make it what I guess this is what I’ll say is at the beginning when like you’re running it all by yourself. Like when you and John, when you and I at the beginning like we were teaching almost every single class. We’re at the front desk before our classes we are managing like literally every single person that came in the door. We saw every single day that they practice like we were here. We did not miss one of their practices because it was either him or I or our one other teacher. By the way. We were there anyway. We were saying hi to him. We are, we’re meeting them, we are greeting them. And so that, that connection piece, because I mean you can’t avoid it. But what happens as we grew from one studio to to studio two studios to three studios, three studios to four studios is all of a sudden we couldn’t be there and we couldn’t be there to say hi to everyone to know everyone’s name.


10:52          So what has to happen at that point was creating a process, a system that, hey, when we hire a front desk person, they need to know that priority number one, not because we’re trying to like make more money or trying to be successful, but because we understood that when people come in, we need to see them as human beings who are worthy of our attention and our love. And what’s crazy is like a side tangent. Like we’ve traveled all around, we’ve been to other like yoga studios. There’s trying to, you know, get our practicing and there are certain places where I walk in and I felt like I was doing them a disservice by being there and it was like, wait a second, do you not understand you are not spiritual enough to be in my studio. It was crazy and I pleased if that’s you like relax and say hi to people and like we literally say that people that walk in the door, we’re like listen, you must shake their hand and tell them your name and ask them their name.


11:42          Like very first thing, say hello to them, shake their hand, tell them your name and get their names so that you can like just create the connection. And my point is it’s easy in the when you’re doing everything, but as you grow and as you, if you decide to expand and open up more studios, it’s really, really important that that culture remains by putting a system in place, by putting a policy in place. Like listen, when someone comes in, I don’t care what you say after this, actually I do care what you say after this. But first and foremost what you have to do is say hello to them and we are even like, listen, if you have the opportunity, get out from behind the desk and like remove the barrier so that they can feel like you are with them. Like it’s so subtle.


12:23          It’s so subtle, but it means so much. Something as simple as come around from behind the desk and shake their hand, introduce yourself, ask them their name, be real and raw with them. It’s so important to be authentic. This is what is missing from this social media world. The last thing I want to say about the connection that just automatically happens with the fact that you’re offering yoga classes, is that right? People come into the class in this Beta state, which is the just a state of mind where they’re very task-oriented, very, okay, marking off my to do list and they move to practice and by the end, they’ve shifted to an Alpha state and then the Alpha state. We are more receptive to sitting down and getting to know people and having conversations. So just the simple fact that you’re offering this and then people come out of the class and they sit down and talk to each other.


13:14          They make these connections, they talk to each other in the locker room. There’s all of a sudden there is a connection. I think it’s more so in the yoga studios around the world then the are probably in most places. So just the fact of the work that we do creates that connection piece. Yeah, absolutely. So the four basic needs, that’s our take on them as far as business owners and entrepreneurs and how you can implement that into your business to make it more successful and having a bigger impact. Yeah. So really take a look at your, what you’re offering and look at like, and look at it now through the filter of certainty, through the filter of novelty, through the filter of significance and connection and see like what you’re doing well and what you’re not doing well, and see what you can do to make some adjustments.


14:00          Maybe it’s in classes, maybe there’s so much variability. You have no control over what’s going on in the classes. And there’s only one beginner class and you can say, listen, let’s tighten that up a little bit. Or maybe it’s you’re so, so set on this one sequence and there’s no variability and there’s no novelty like that may work for you. But is there an ability to maybe offer a workshop that it doesn’t change the structure of like what you’re offering on a weekly basis, but it provides this one-off experience that people are like, Hey, I’ve never done like inversion, let’s try and inversion workshop, but let’s try a hip-opening workshop. Or like something where it doesn’t change the core offering of your business but allows for some of the novelty and variability that as far as a human being is concerned is what we’re looking for.


14:43          And are you or your teachers giving shout outs during classes or do you know the people’s names that are coming into your class and are you giving him that a girl at that a boy. I don’t suggest actually saying that a girl that a boy, John’s using terminology, channeling his 1950s sell out a girl, not a boy. Oh my God, no, don’t use that please, but give them an acknowledgment. Let him know that you see their growth in their practice and then the last piece for connection is just real involved with people, talk to them, let them know in the rest of the connection happens naturally as you teach more people and they come out and connect with each other, so that’s our take on it. Yeah.


15:24          Thanks for listening. We hope you enjoyed this episode and be sure to tune in for the next one. Thanks. Peace. Thanks. Yes, thanks so much for listening to Yoga Entrepreneur Secrets. Do you have a question that you’d like us to answer raw and uncut on the podcast? If you want your questions answered, all you need to do is head over to Apple Podcasts, and do three simple things. One; rate and review telling us what you think of the podcast. Two; in that review, ask anything you want related to yoga, and three; if you want to shout out, leave your Instagram handle or name and that’s it. Then listen in to hear your question answered Live, raw and uncut. Join us next time on Yoga Entrepreneur Secrets Podcast. Thanks.

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