Smart, authentic bios are essential for any yoga teacher. They serve as a mini resume, highlighting our credentials and informing potential students about our mission statement and style of teaching. Biographies are used on your personal postcards, flyers and website. The studio or gym you teach at may also ask for your bio to include on their website. Remember that often all a student has, in order to decide whether or not they want to take your class, is your personal story: your biography. It is important that you feel empowered by how you tell that story.
I also understand that for many of us it is not easy to write about oneself. Do you write in first person or third person? What do you include, and how much is too much?
Try taking these steps to write your best biography. Most of all, honor yourself in what you write. By doing so, you honor and elevate the profession of yoga!
Step 1: YOUR PHILOSOPHY
- Write out your personal mission statement.
- Write out your teaching intention: why do you teach?
- Write out your vision statement.
- Write out what yoga means to you.
Step 2: YOUR BRAND
- If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?
- If others described you in three words, what would those be? Ask a couple friends, and find out if this is an accurate portrayal.
- What would a Yelp review of your personality say about you?
- If someone followed you around with a video camera all day, what would the reality TV show about your life be called?
- Your life has a soundtrack: what is the name of your theme song?
Step 3: YOUR SPECIALISM
- Write out ten things that make you a great person.
- Write a list of five things you are passionate about.
- Write out three things that keep you inspired.
- Write a list of three things you are most embarrassed about, and the expert lessons you’ve learned from them.
- Write out how yoga came into your life. What was your first class like for you? What brought you back to a second class?
Step 4: YOUR AUDIENCE
Does how you teach meet the expectations of what you say about yourself in your bio? Please don’t falsely advertise one thing and deliver another. It’s not fair to your clients.
What kind of students would you recommend taking your class? Does your bio speak to them?
What style of yoga do you teach? Be honest; just spell it out.
Offer a brief description of your class so students know what to expect. Include things like whether or not you use music, what the pacing is like (slow, medium, fast), whether you are alignment oriented, if your class heated, what level of physical strength is expected when you teach.
Step 5: YOUR TEACHERS
The best teachers remain lifelong students. Honor your teachers in your bio, those that have taught you through ease or challenge, and the lessons for you now as a teacher too. Model politeness and respect and your students will do the same for you. Karma keeps us real and humble. You are there only because your students show up as you showed up for your teachers. Give good, get good back.
Now take the input from these five steps and write out four different biographies for yourself.
- Twitter-size bio 150 characters
- Short 50 word biography
- First person biography 250 words
- Third person biography 250 words
Some tips in finalizing your biographies:
- Read them aloud to yourself.
- Stand up and read them to a friend.
- Have a friend read them aloud to you.
- Make any necessary edits; every word counts!
- And remember, as you evolve as a teacher, so should your bio. Make a point to revisit it annually.