Today we’d like to introduce you to Linda Freeman.
Hi Linda, thanks for joining us today. We’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I was a corporate executive for 11 years when I decided to leave the corporate world and create the life I truly wanted. I had a three-part plan: to make a living as a professional yoga teacher, swing dance teacher and writer.
My husband and I had met in the MFA program at Bennington college, and although I was head of communications for a global firm, I really wanted to focus on poetry and fiction writing. I had also been doing yoga since the 80s, so the first thing I did was get certified in integrative yoga therapy. And most importantly. I wanted to teach swing dance with my husband, who was a gifted choreographer and blues and jazz dancer.
My life purpose is to live an inspired and inspirational life of creativity, vitality, productivity, financial freedom, gratefulness and love and to help transform people’s lives.
Following that purpose, I began Bliss Body Yoga, specializing in helping older adults rediscover their own vitality. During the pandemic, I expanded to Bliss Body Yoga at Home with virtual classes reaching people around the world. I am now certified in Yoga for Osteoporosis and more. www.blissbodyoga.com
In 2004, my husband, Chester, and I began Got2Lindy Dance Studios. Since then, we have taught all over the world, in person and now virtually. We specialize in Lindy Hop, the authentic form of swing dance, blues, balboa, vernacular jazz and Charleston and are highly sought instructors and choreographers for wedding couples in all styles of dance. www.bestweddingdancelessons.com and www.got2lindy.com
In 2017, at the urging of my students to share my secret of living such a powerful and fulfilling life, I created Create Your Life Workshops, which teach exactly how to discover what they want most and set out to attain it. I’m proud to say my workshop participants have gone on to get the job, relationship, house, or retirement they discovered they truly wanted. www.createyourlifeworkshops.com. This workshop is delivered virtually and people all over the world have attended.
And I am now also a widely published poet under my full name, Linda McCauley Freeman. www.facebook.com/LindaMcCauleyFreeman
Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Both of us quit our day job to begin our dance journey. We started with just a handful of students and a lot of faith in our ability and passion for our dance. I was a corporate executive and my colleagues thought I was nuts to give up a lucrative career at the top for a “hobby.”
One of the things I always knew about myself is that I am a self-starter and really good at creating something from nothing, which is exactly what I needed to create three successful businesses and a writing career!
Obviously, the biggest recent challenge was COVID. While my yoga business flourished because it was easy to do from home, our dance business took a big hit because no one was having weddings and most of our weekly students were not living with a partner at home so they had no one to dance with. We quickly created a series of solo jazz classes that became very popular and converted the carriage barn on our property to a dance studio where we could hold private masked lessons for couples. Now that weddings are happening again, we are now inundated with wedding couples both in the studio and virtually.
Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
I’m all about transformation.
1. In dance people transform in capabilities and confidence. It’s satisfying. You see the transformation in their faces. There is a physical transformation too. My purpose in life is to be inspirational. I wasn’t always a good dancer. I didn’t always know what the hell I was doing. I had no music or dance background. My husband and I both learned to dance as adults. I transformed myself. I know how to explain to people who are not natural dancers because I was not a natural dancer. I know how to teach non-dancers because I’m one of them. This was a struggle for me. It was on my goal list forever. I had to learn how to dance and have the confidence to ask people to dance. Our biggest regret is that for our own wedding dance in 1999, we stood and swayed and wished that we had taken lessons. So once we got married we started to take lessons for fun. Then it became a hobby…a passion…a career! Who knew we would get so good at it!
2. In yoga, I see people transform from tired old bodies to flexible invigorated bodies. Each class is created specifically for those who show up. So if we have a lot of neck issues, we work on relieving that. My students are so dedicated and loving that during a period of time I was hospitalized, they gathered together to watch my instructional DVD and paid me as if it were a class because they knew I had no income. During COVID, they have increased their attendance in my virtual classes so I actually have more students then I ever had in person.
3. In Create Your Life Workshops, I have the hands-on opportunity to help people discover their dreams and transform their lives.
Do you have recommendations for books, apps, blogs, etc?
I read everything all the time, but there isn’t anything specific I can point to except that I was involved in practically every self-improvement and enlightenment course possible throughout my life from EST (what is now the Landmark Forum) to The Options Institute to Omega (where I have also taught) to Toastmasters. When you set yourself on a course of curiosity and a quest for self-improvement, you can’t help but learn and grow.
This year, we have been holding free virtual Zoom presentations on the 3rd Friday of every month on various subjects such as Harlem’s Contribution to Music and Dance for Black History Month in February and our very popular Slummin’ Uptown: A Virtual Tour through Harlem Hotspots of the 20s and 30s. They are available on our YouTube channel www.youtube.com/Got2LindyDanceStudios.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.bestweddingdancelessons.com, www.blissbodyoga.com, www.createyourlifeworkshops.com
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/got2lindy
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/got2lindy
- Twitter: www.twitter.com/got2lindy
- Youtube: www.youtube.com/Got2LindyDanceStudios
- Other: www.facebook.com/LindaMcCauleyFreeman | www.got2lindy.com