We had the good fortune of connecting with Nicole McIntyre and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Nicole, what habits do you feel helped you succeed?
Habits are absolutely fascinating. The one most impactful habit that I have developed is the habit of learning. While cooking, driving, and doing chores, I listen to educational podcasts. Not only does this help me pass the time, but it makes everyday chores so much more enjoyable. Further, I have now built the habit of creating rules for my life. If I find that something is not working (i.e., I am inexplicably irritable or having a bad day), I stop myself and try to identify what the underlying cause is. Then, I think of a way to prevent myself from ending up in that situation again. For me, this often comes in the form of a life rule. For example, I have now created a rule of not making any plans for Sundays. This gives me one day of the week that I have nothing planned and no responsibilities. It allows me to turn the day into whatever I so desire; sometimes it starts with coffee with a friend, but often times it turns into something much more solitude, such as doing a paint-by-numbers or writing poetry. I have given up on the belief that analytical and creative thinking are enemies, and I have finally learned to love my imperfect, creative side. When the weather is nice, my Sundays are often spent reading at a park. I read everything from anatomy and physiology textbooks to fictional thrillers. I feel that Americans in general undervalue education, and I am grateful every day for all of the free educational material we have at our hands. I hope that we will someday rediscover a love for learning in our culture.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Along with the trend, I have recently added a slash to my title; I am now Tutor/Educational Manager. I call myself a tutor because it is the label that most people relate to and understand, although I personally feel that I am more of an educational manager. My business is not just tutoring. It is creating a relationship with the student, understanding their life goals, and working backwards to develop a plan that identifies how I can help them to get there. For some students, this means simply providing some educational human interaction because they are struggling with the solitude nature of online learning. For other students, this means figuring out how they can get a C in their course so that they don’t have to retake it over the summer. My business is different because I treat every student differently. Teaching is a privilege, and it is about understanding how people think. If I can understand their thought process, then I can identify the problem with their thinking and more effectively communicate with them. It was certainly not easy to get to where I am today. I actually built my business with Craigslist ads. In the beginning, not having a steady income was incredibly difficult. I had yet to have built the referral network that I am so fortunate to have today. To overcome these challenges, I worked as hard as I could to be an excellent teacher and provide an excellent service that people would want to tell their friends about. I find that word-of-mouth advertising is the highest form of praise, and still today, it is the backbone of my business. I do very little online advertising at all, and in fact, consider myself somewhat of an internet hermit. Although I fully appreciate the internet, I often feel that we have given it a bit too much power. Everyone says that you have to be online, but I have learned that this is not necessarily the case. Being offline has given me more freedom and control over my business. It has protected me from the addiction of social media, and it has allowed me ample time to read and do other self-development work that I believe has enhanced my business far more than any social media ad could have. My business is built on empathy, understanding, and people first. In teaching, as life, there is not a one-size-fits-all solution.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Coffee/breakfast spots: Chit-Chat Cafe on Sawtelle Bodega Wine Bar La Monarca Philz Brunch: Bodega Wine Bar The Independence Sonoma Wine Garden Lunch/Dinner Spots: Forma (must try the tortellini!) Fritto Misto 1212 Santa Monica Santa Monica Seafood Sugarfish Daikokuya Tatsu Activities/Other: Yogaworks (in non-covid times) Santa Monica stairs Old Muscle Beach to watch the slack-liners Venice Canals Walk down Abbott Kinney The Last Bookstore Entertainment/Shows: Magicopolis West Side Comedy Club To satisfy the sweet tooth: Choco Vivo (an absolute must for chocolate lovers) Van Leeuwen for an ice cream run! (must try the vegan chocolate) Sweet Lady Jane (must try the triple berry cake) La Monarca If you’re in the mood for a drink: Santa Monica Brew Works The Dudes Tasting Room Shangri-La rooftop Élephante Beach House Bungalow Hotel Erwin.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shoutout to Kami Dexter for encouraging me to continue down the path of education. I wouldn’t have done it without you!