Today on The YogaRevealed Podcast, we tune in with Colorado’s Hanuman Festival Director, Yoshi Aono! Yoshi reveals how he stays focused to the purity of yoga while running a successful business. Yoshi began his journey on the beaches of Kauai, Hawaii in 1989. His Asana (postural) practice evolved overtime, after he was through touring America in a rockband. Boulder, Colorado has been home base for 26 years, which spawned the birth of one of the Worlds most prestigious yoga gatherings, The Hanuman Festival.
“Whatever you do in life, you gather your skill sets so you can go into your next endeavors...and do it with that much more experience. It is apart of being an entrepreneur.” Yoshi, Yogi-preneur, believes we all have a purpose and we are here to make a difference, thus creating a better existence for us all. His offering to the world is through creating and maintaining The Hanuman Festival. The Hindu God Hanuman is the ultimate devoted yogi, in undying service to Sita and Ram, thus inspiring the name of the festival, Yoshi explained. This festival is committed to the transformation that yoga provides, which is Yoshi’s fuel to keep going. Hanuman Festival brings in the worlds most renown yoga instructors from across the world, from dozens of styles and lineages of practice.
Going into their 6th year, Hanuman Festival has gone through challenges and stipulations. Success in any business takes time, persistence, and trust in order to get out there and make a difference through your business. Having a business connected to a self-transformational practice is an entirely different conversation. How to be profitable while honoring both parties involved is the unique challenge brought to the table. The receiver and the presenter must be in unison to the intention; to transform and evolve. It takes balance.
What is yoga? Yoshi found in the financial world that money could be made from endeavors. But he asked deeper questions. Why are we here? What are we contributing towards the evolution of humanity and what are we doing for our community? Creating this festival gave Yoshi the drive to move past the challenges and shadow of having just a normal business. He wanted to create something special. He creates a safe space for internal transformation to take place inside the festival grounds.
“GO OUT THERE AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE!”
Yoshi and his partner, Dayna, created Hanuman Adventures which takes on the normal yoga retreat and vamps it up with how to give back. Yoshi takes you to sacred sites around the globe and yes, you eat great food, practice yoga in amazing places, but you enter the culture and the community. Hanuman Adventures help build community homes, clean up underprivileged areas, and work with kids. You truly tap into the sacred land itself. Understanding and gaining a perspective of how other people live on this planet offers gratitude to us for the life we live. This is why Hanuman Festival exists. To create a profound transformation on and off the yoga mat. Yoshi will go to Bali in March 2016 and Peru in October 2016.
5 Tips on how to run a business in the Yoga Industry
- Be realistic, be viable as a company. Have a business model and plan.
-Have a positive relationship with money. It is OKAY to make money. Provide something of extreme value.
-Have devotion to community & create something unique.
-Never give up. Be committed.