We had the good fortune of connecting with Amanda Petro and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amanda, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
There were many reasons I started this journey. The first one and a major motivator for me was to help people. I have always been a physically inclined person and love expressing myself through movement. I grew up a gymnast and dancer, flexibility and strength were of huge importance for me. It made my feel my best, Finding yoga was a pivotal moment in my life because I learned how to move in a more sustainable and accessible way, in a way that connected me to my spirit and purpose, that taught me how to breathe in order to regulate tough emotions and challenging moments. Yoga taught me how to be a better person, to come from my heart space, to care in a way that was open and accepting of all walks of life. I wanted to share this mind, body, spirit union with the world. I wanted people to feel good when they left my class, to have more space and openness in their body and minds.. I wanted to take this transformational practice and offer it to those who didn’t necessarily have access to it or know about its multitude of benefits. I wanted to share this life changing practice to anyone who was interested in trying! Another motivator to start my own business was to be self sustaining. I didn’t want to rely on a big corporation to provide for me. I wanted to provide for myself, to be my own boss, to work with people, not for people. I come from a perspective that we can do whatever we set our minds to, to get it done if we really want it. I left traditional college when it was no longer resonating with me, when I was no longer getting anything out of it. It was wasting my time, energy and money to continue my education at a university that didn’t fulfill my needs as an individual. When I left and transitioned to my healing arts college, I knew immediately to make this business successful, I had to work hard and be in it for real. It couldn’t be half-assed. To be successful, I had to constantly be on the clock. Being in business for yourself is not easy, but it is definitely worth it. No 9-5 for me. That was always a personal goal. And I’ve done it. I made it happen. And now it continues to change and transform in ways I never imagine. I keep expanding. I honestly feel I’m just getting started.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
One thing I feel sets me apart from others is I have taken the yoga practice into facilities outside of a yoga studio or typical yoga spaces. Yoga studios are great, but can be inaccessible to many individuals whether it’s financially, demographically, geographically or just don’t have time to commit to a monthly membership. I teach for treatment centers, corporate offices, country clubs and private classes. I also have virtual classes available. This allows me to work with many different types of individuals and I can create classes for their specific needs rather than teach a class that is more generalized. Getting to where I am today definitely wasn’t easy. I have overcome my fair share of challenges and set backs. It takes time, dedication and persistence in order to find success. Because I was starting my own business, I feel I was constantly on the clock. No matter what time of day or which day of the week, I was working. Whether that be answering email, texts, calls or teaching. I made myself available and I usually always said yes. I didn’t have the privilege to say no or turn down opportunities because I was still building myself up. It took a lot of sacrifice, a lot of time being underpaid and undervalued, but eventually I found my way, learned how to put a price on my work and learned how to say no when I needed to. Over time, I started getting referred, my name was getting out there and I was getting called back for more freelance work. This took years. I never gave up, even when I was overworking myself. It paid off eventually and now I’m in a space where I can expand on my skillsets. I am starting to lead teacher trainings and retreats. Being able to teach teachers and travel to beautiful places for work has always been a goal of mine, and now I am making it happen. It all started when I decided to go off the beaten path and create the life I wanted for myself.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Like I mentioned before, I’m a very active person. I also love the outdoors. I’m constantly spending time outside in my garden, local parks and going on hikes or to bike riding on boardwalk at the beach. My typical getaway is to go camping in Yosemite, Sequoia or Joshua Tree National Parks. Rock Climbing at LA Boulders Picnic at Lacy Park in San Marino Beach Day at Point Dume or El Matador in Malibu Hiking any trail on Angeles Crest Hwy Kinship Studios in Highland Park South Pasadena Farmers market Seed Bakery for breakfast or lunch in Pasadena Jameson Brown Coffee Roasters Daisy Mint – best Thai Food! All India Cafe Real Food Daily – yummy vegan food! Cafe Birdie in Highland Park for great food and drinks Gracias Madre in West Hollywood for vegan Mexican food and amazing drinks Bon Vivant Market & Café in Atwater Village Zinc Cafe Downtown LA
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
The first person who comes to mind is my first 200 YTT teacher, Monica Paige Subia. She taught me how to teach others, and in turn I learn so much about myself. I learned how being my most authentic version is what provides the best service to others. Her selflessness, her kindness and unapologetic authenticity is what inspired me to be of selfless service, to teach from my heart. She provided the tools I use to teach my students that healing is possible and that it comes from their personal work. Everything I teach came from the foundation she set. Her devotion to her practice and sharing wisdom with her students is what sent me on my own personal journey to do the same.