The Key to Unlocking

Your Potential

Ep. 220 with Shay Kostabi

“What you present to the world needs to be specific and consistent.”

Shay Kostabi

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Bio
I am a fitness business coach with expertise in talent development, program design and member experience. A creator, educator, and consultant.
Show Notes

In this insightful episode, Shay unravels the importance of consistency and persona development, and brand building. She delves into the concept of flow states, showcasing its essential role in crafting immersive experiences, and unfolds the power of recognizing one’s superpower.

If you have any comments or questions about the Be It pod shoot us a message at [email protected]. Or leave a comment below!

And as always, if you’re enjoying the show please share it with someone who you think would enjoy it as well. It is your continued support that will help us continue to help others. Thank you so much! Never miss another show by subscribing at LesleyLogan.co/subscribe.

In this episode you will learn about:

  • Why consistency is as important as authenticity.
  • How to utilize your public persona and personal identity.
  • The Neuroscience of flow states for client retention.
  • How to build a safe community and good experience.
  • Aspirational identity and importance of niching down.
  • How to find your superpower to unlock your potential.

Episode References/Links:

Transcript

Shay Kostabi: What you present to the world needs to be specific and consistent. I’ve been saying this a lot lately. Authenticity is overrated, particularly when it comes to business and being a, a public figure, a speaker, a teacher, a presenter, somebody that’s in front of people. Your clients aren’t paying for your authenticity.

They wanna know that you’re authentic. They’re paying for your consistency.

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INTRODUCTION

Lesley Logan
Welcome to the Be It Till You See It podcast where we talk about taking messy action, knowing that perfect is boring. I’m Lesley Logan, Pilates instructor and fitness business coach. I’ve trained thousands of people around the world and the number one thing I see stopping people from achieving anything is self doubt. My friends, action brings clarity and it’s the antidote to fear. Each week, my guests will bring Bold, Executable, Intrinsic and Targeted steps that you can use to put yourself first and Be It Till You See It. It’s a practice, not a perfect. Let’s get started.

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Lesley Logan
Oh my goodness. Get ready, get ready. This, um, this interview is just going to have so many amazing pieces of advice no matter who you are, what you do, you’re going to love this. If you are a fitness instructor, you’ll absolutely dive into this. If you are not, but you are someone who’s wanting to work for yourself, works for yourself, or is trying to show up in a room that you have imposter in Iran, there is good stuff in here for you.

And so my guest today is she Kaabi. I was on her podcast, fitness Career Mastery. Um, she and her husband have an incredible program that they work with, um, fitness instructor, studio owners, and, and you’ll hear all about it in this episode, but I met them through a mutual friend who tagged us in a post and then we stalked each other and we love the same blue blockers and we got to know each other.

And I was on their podcast. She’s now finally on my podcast. And, um, this will be the first of many amazing conversations. I hope you leave this as inspired and lit up as I am. And so after this little ado, here’s Shay Kastabi.

And stick around to the very end because we got some outtakes that’s been happening. There’s always outtakes. Um, and the team does collect them for bloopers on the YouTube, but uh, we’re adding them into the end of the pod because you know what you need to know that we are not perfect. You’re not perfect, and we’re enjoying the process and we are enjoying that.

So have a good laugh on our behalf. Love you.

Right. Be it babes. I am super excited to have our guest today. I’m gonna be really honest. You already know I’m a fast talker when Shay and I are in the room, you may wanna just put this on a normal speed. Because we’re gonna get ready to laugh. You’re gonna learn a lot. Shay Kostabi is our guest today and I am just so thrilled to have this bright shining light in your ears.

Shay can you tell everyone who you are and what you’re rocking at. I’m

Shay Kostabi: dying. Um, I’ll give you my labels. Is that, that’s like the easiest way to introduce, um, who I am. I mean I, uh, I am a creator. I’m a mentor, I’m a teacher. I am an experience designer. I’m a brand builder. I’m an idea generator. Um, I’m a fitness business coach.

My husband and I have a business called Fitness Career Mastery Podcast of the same name, which is currently on pause. But there’s something like 200 episodes for you to listen to if you’re interested. Um, Everything about how to create a successful heart led business in the fitness industry, and also how to create meaningful experiences that keep people there and, and really change people’s lives.

And, um, I also do what you do. I travel to train instructors. I build programs for boutique studios, primarily in cycling bar and hit training. I’ve, you know, lived all over the world doing that. And we were just talking about your upcoming trip and I love getting paid to go to like an exotic location to work and like explore.

I love travel, adventure or culture

Lesley Logan: all over the… I agree. I’m not saying that if you’re in a non exotic place, I won’t go. But I am saying that if it is an exotic place, you’re more likely to get a yes.

Shay Kostabi: I I’ll, I just got back from Indianapolis, which is like a super cool city, like

Lesley Logan: in mind good things. I have heard good things.

I have not been there. Um, we’ve actually, in Indiana, we’ve spent many a days in Fort Wayne, which people are like, you know, Fort Wayne. We’re like, yep. Actually we’ve, we’ve done us some, some stuff there.

Shay Kostabi: We could swap stories. I’ve been there too. I love it.

Lesley Logan: Well, okay, so what I love is how multifaceted you are, and I know our listeners, um, what I hope you all heard from that is sometimes I think people think, oh, I’m not just one thing or I have to be one thing, and it’s like, actually you, you’ve, you’re layered, you know, it’s not like you started out doing all of these things, but you, you, you have, it’s grown into these things and I’m wondering like, can we take a step back and just how did you get into like working for yourself?

Because I feel like that is always its own story and own

Shay Kostabi: journey. Yeah. Ooh, okay. Keep it short. You know, I come from a family of artists and entrepreneurs, everybody around me was running their own business in some way. My dad has always been, um, self-employed. Um, my uncles are famous artists and musicians.

My grandparents are immigrants who made their own way. And so, and I’m very proud of that. And I think I just had role models who are like, you don’t have to subscribe to the status quo or the norm. You can be whatever you want to be and you can create it yourself. And it was almost expected that you would do that in a way.

Nobody pressured me to go to college. Nobody said I had to be a certain thing. Um, so

Lesley Logan: That’s so cool. I just wanna highlight that because I feel like. That is, I was the opposite. It was like getting to college. Cause that’s the only way you’re gonna get out, no one works for themselves in my family, like the one that did, they’re like, he’s kind of crazy out there.

He thinks he’s got this

Shay Kostabi: idea. I I, I’m from a family of crazies, so, you know, uh, so that feels good. And I, I, I’m so grateful for that. Um, so I’ve kind of always wanted to do my own thing. And we talked about this on our podcast, you know, making jewelry or shoes or whatever it is. I’ve just been doing it since I was young.

I’ve also, like, one of my favorite things to play when I was little was teacher. So I would always invite my friends over and give them spelling tests. So these, these, these things that I list I’ve been doing since childhood and, and I, I think we’re gonna talk about this day, it really comes from like knowing your superpowers.

Like knowing Yeah. At, at the core of who you are and what your interests are and what your skills are, and then going out and finding new skills and abilities. But I fell into fitness is like my fourth career. Yeah. And I was working for a corporate business and also doing some things on the side like product development and programming and some other stuff kind of under the table.

And that, that was really starting to pique my interest and I really don’t fit into corporate atmosphere. I am such a rebel.

Lesley Logan: Oh my gosh. I didn’t think I was a rebel, but I was, I was asked to, to, to

Shay Kostabi: quit. I really have a difficult time following rules that don’t make sense. I love rules. A and I’m really good at making them for other people.

Yeah. But they really have to make sense. And I have so many crazy ideas. I think there’s a line in Alice Wonderland that’s like sometimes I wake up with as many as a hundred new ideas before breakfast. Yeah. And I used to have that written, I’m like that’s me. Yeah. And that’s annoying. You work in a corporate infrastructure, like, we should be doing this.

And they’re like, shut up and teach your class. You know,

Lesley Logan: they’re like, it’s like, and they’ll, they’ll do it next year and that’s fine for them, but like, you’re like, I wanna do that. I’m beyond that idea now. Now I moved onto this one.

Shay Kostabi: Um, yeah, I could tell you stories about of, you know, I saw a vision of like where the company should go.

Um, that actually has happened, is in the world now, and is something that everybody knows. And I was like, we should do this. And they were like, no. And now the company’s not in business anymore, so whatever. Um, you know, it’s like, I wanna just make this stuff happen. So, yeah, I, um, I had like a big life change, honestly.

I had a divorce, I went through divorce, um, a bunch of other things. I, I was living in New York. I moved to California and I was like, I wanna start over. I just wanna do my own thing. And, um, I was teaching part-time at a studio, but I just started, I don’t, I honestly, I don’t remember people just started calling me.

Yeah. Like, can you help me build this program? Can you teach my instructors this? Um, when you just out there and you make yourself visible and, and you, and you’re presenting your skills and your abilities, and people see who you are, they offer you things. You know, I, I got a sponsorship from New Balance that helped, like, I was one of seven female ambassadors and, you know, on a salary and traveling all over the country.

So I met a lot of people and that gave me the freedom to be like, well, what do I wanna create?

Lesley Logan: But I think that you just hit the nail on the head. Like you, I think a lot of people, one will say they don’t know what their superpowers are, they don’t know what their strengths are. They don’t know these things. And I actually think that they’ve, they’ve been looking and comparing so much to so many people.

They’ve actually stopped look at the mirror and realizing what they do have. And they’re afraid to actually be different. They’re afraid to be the person with the ideas in the room that gets turned down. They’re afraid that no one will listen to ’em. And as you and I just found out, like. We’ve had many ideas that we’ve had, and people are like, nope, nope, not doing that.

And, and yet the people in the room that are hearing you, they talk to people like, I can’t. I, the, some of the opportunities I had in the fitness world in LA was not because of like, like I went pounding the pavements to like knock on that person’s door. But it’s because I would not shut up about the thing that I loved and was so passionate about.

Yeah. And someone told someone, I even heard someone tell someone about me in a woman’s bathroom in LA which was hilarious. I was like, should I come out of the stall or should I just sit here while they’re talking about me? But they do, because people wanna help people and they’ll say, I need someone like this.

Like, oh, I actually know someone. She might, yes, maybe she knows. Like, it’s like that kind of a thing. But if people don’t know who you are, what you do, how you rock at it, they can’t, they can’t put your name in the

Shay Kostabi: hat, you know? Right. And the trick is truly like authenticity is, you need to be authentic.

You need to be real, you need to be true to you, to your spirit and, and what really resonates with you. It has to be real. But beyond that, it needs to be what you present to the world needs to be specific and consistent. I’ve been saying this a lot lately. Authenticity is overrated, particularly when it comes to business and being a public figure, a speaker, a teacher, a presenter, somebody that’s in front of people.

Your clients are paying for your authenticity. They wanna know that you’re authentic. They’re paying for your consistency. They want to know that, um, you’re gonna be there for them, right? And that there’s some accountability there and that they can bank on a certain number of things to help them get what they want.

And if you are unclear on things like your core values, your interests, your abilities, your skills your purpose, your mission, your superpowers. You know, human beings are so multifaceted. You can show up as like something different all the time. And you’re like, this feels good today. And then people are like, wait, but I needed you to be this.

Yeah. Like, that’s cool too, but I really needed you to be this. You know? Yeah. No, I

Lesley Logan: think, uh, you know, I think that is, I think so many people, like I need, like, they do wanna focus. I’m so authentic. I’m so this, and it’s like being consistent doesn’t mean you’re not authentic. It just means that people need to know that you, when you say you’re gonna show up, you’re gonna show up, that the class that you’re gonna teach is, is what they expected from last week.

Yeah. Like, people actually think you can change the music, but even that, you can’t, they don’t want country next week if they’ve been doing nineties hip hop. Like people, like there’s something about that consistency that’s what they’re paying for because people need certainty. More than anything they need to know that like what they’re paying you for is what they’re gonna get week after week.

And it’s so hard when you’re a multifaceted cuz you feel like you can be boxed in, but there’s still ways of being your authentic self. And showing up consistently. It’s a, it’s just, it’s a, it’s a practice. Yeah.

Shay Kostabi: And whether you’re a personal brand or a brand or you know, a product, you are a reflection of the consumer or the audience’s identity.

Right. Like, I see myself in that. So, you know, when you walk into a Nike store, there are certain things that you expect if, if you walked in and Nike didn’t look like Nike, you would be like, what happened? And there’s a, almost like a loss of your own identity. Like, this is what I expected. The same thing when people come to your class, right.

They’re expecting we go to this, when we go to the movie theater, we have expectations about what the rituals are like and the expectations and the services and the atmosphere. When we go to a concert, you know, our favorite artists, we expect, you know, a certain level of quality that is consistent throughout time.

Lesley Logan: I love that you’re bringing this up because I think like when I call up about being it till you see it, I am not talking about faking it till you make it. And that’s a very different thing because I think people can misinterpret this like, oh, I need to be like this so that I attract people. But it’s like, actually you said it.

People are attracted to you cuz they see something in you. So the more you can be the version of yourself, you’re like on this planet to be, the more you’re going to actually be able to be doing this, whatever this is forever. For as long as you want. Yeah. And authentically. And consistently. And, and you’re not gonna have to wake up one day going, I don’t know who I am, I wanna change course.

And you, your people are like, uh, this isn’t the, this isn’t the story I wanted to be into. All those things, they’re gonna feel like, Ugh, what just happened

Shay Kostabi: here? Totally. Oh my gosh. Have you ever gone to a class where one day the teacher comes in and she’s like, shaved her head or like done, or like has like a whole new persona and you’re like, Are you okay?

Lesley Logan: Right, right. I I, um, well, like welcome to LA um, you know, it’s a little distracting. You almost need them to address like, yeah, I donate my hair or something. Just so you can go, oh, they’re still them, but if they’re (…) ,

Shay Kostabi: yeah. Well, so you’re allowed to change and evolve. Mm-hmm. And you’re also allowed to just like abandon a persona that no longer serves you.

You know, um, this is so funny. We’re moving into, this is something that I teach that I’m deeply passionate about. I, I’m actually teaching a masterclass tomorrow and persona development for fitness instructors. And, um, it stems from my personal experience, my background in theater and playing characters, and also what I’ve just learned about, um, You know, being a public figure and stepping in, in front of people as yourself, not as a character.

Right. Yeah. And what it takes to like, play big in the arena that you’re in. Yeah. And you know, a, a persona is a, um, like it’s not a character. It’s not a mask that you put on, it’s not something, it’s not that fake it until you make it. It’s a, a version of your best self, your most refined and intentional self.

It’s the version, it’s, it’s how you are perceived by other people. So that’s really important and something that I think a lot of instructors in particular don’t think about. It’s not just, I want you to see this. You have to find that intersection between what you would like to transmit. And how that’s actually resonating and what your people want to receive.

Mm-hmm. And that takes some adjustment. And yeah, there’s a big difference between, there’s some people that just have so much charisma, you know, and talent and, um, you know, charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent to quote RuPaul.

Lesley Logan: Right. And, um, one of our favorite people

Shay Kostabi: on this planet, right. And they just seem to have this God-given gift, you know, and they’re operating purely on intuition and instinct.

Yeah. Which is great. And, and so powerful, like use that, tap into that, but that’s also very primal and very dangerous and inconsistent. Yeah. And so when you use tools and you show up with intention, the intention that you bring is what dictates the outcome. So now you have more control about how you are connecting and relating and resonating with people because you have made specific choices about how you’re gonna show up in the room.

And that starts with knowing who you are. Yeah. We do have to create a persona that seems like a, like a character, right? Yeah. Like we need that Superman for Clark Kent. Yeah. Like we need that because we play small in our lives and we don’t always use our superpowers, or we’re not conscious of them or, um, and then when you step into the arena, when you step in front of people, you need to be at your highest frequency.

Yeah. You have to be. And sometimes that requires calling in, there’s so many exercises that you can do. You might think about a spirit animal or, um a famous person that you admire. Or even like, it could be qualities of your grandmother, which I often pull in. She was such a badass. Yeah. You know, um, but sometimes we have to like, kind of put that on so that we can step into who we really are.

Yeah. And our, our most potent, our most

Lesley Logan: powerful. I mean, the persona is almost like the Be It Till You See It. Like it’s kinda like that. Yes. And some of my best classes that I ever taught when I was a new teacher, when I was sick, because like I didn’t want anyone to know I was sick.

Yeah, right. And so like, I like stepped into that and I was, and I remember going, wow, that was one of the best classes. People was like that was the best class. I’m like, what is different? And it’s because I was like, oh, I didn’t want anyone to know that my vibe was low, so I brought my vibe as high as I could.

What if I did it all the time? But because I

Shay Kostabi: And when you’re not, yeah, when you’re not sick and (…) Yeah.

Lesley Logan: Yeah. Wow. Exactly. Oh my gosh. Can you imagine Unstoppable and, and then also, I mean, I think what was unique about when I first started teaching is like when I left the class, I was still in the space, right?

I was in a high-fitness club, so I couldn’t like turn off. Yeah. Because I’m going to the locker room, the same bathrooms that everyone else is using. And then I’m going in here and I’ve been in those classes, but the person’s on, and then you see them grabbing their stuff and they’re like, uh, Yes. Like they’re just not there.

And I never wanted people to feel like I was inauthentic. I always wanna make sure that they felt like who I was and who they were taking class with was very similar. But I can’t be at that vibe all the time. Like, no, obviously there’s other things, but one of the best compliments I ever got ever is that when I met these people in Australia, they said, you’re exactly the same on in person as you are online.

And I’m like, yes. And that is, I think, where people, people get the persona thing confused. They feel like they have to act like somebody. And it’s like, no, you have to act like the person you actually wanna be and you’ll, you’re gonna bring yourself up to that level. And then, but people, the intention you have behind is what people are going to gather up and they’ll come along the journey with you.

Shay Kostabi: Yeah. Yes. Take them on the journey. Oh my gosh. I’m gonna pull it like a bunch of threads here. Yeah. Number one, you have to be able to take it off. Right. That, that high, you can’t operate at that high frequency. You may sometimes need to carry it into the lobby, into the locker room, into the parking lot.

Right. You will have to carry it, but at some point you have to be able to say that is for this space. Mm-hmm. And now I, I get to be something else because the other thing you said about, um, when the person said you’re exactly the same on camera as you are in person. Right. Those are different, but they’re also the same.

I doubt very much that you’re the same person on camera, that you are, you know, when you’re in bed reading a book or like watching a movie with your husband, like there has to be some separation there. Yeah. And, and there’s so many reasons why that’s beneficial. You teach the worst class of your life.

Somebody tells you they hate your music, they don’t like your face, they don’t think that you should be teaching this modality because you don’t look like X. Yeah. You know, or whatever the deal is. And you cannot internalize that. You can’t take that. Everybody has an, when you put yourself in front of people, you are just opening the doors for criticism.

Yep. Every single person in that room has an opinion of you. If they’re your followers, if they come all the time, they’re your clients, your members, they think very highly of you. But there’s always gonna be somebody in there like, why is she wearing that? So…(Lesley: oh yeah).

Lesley Logan: And that, and that can’t be, that can’t be something you internalize.

It’s just why there has to be the part of you that’s like for yourself. Yeah. And, and that you get to, you know, when I walk my dogs for sure, you guys, I don’t look good. I’ll tell you right now, I, my neighbors probably are like, who the hell? I like wear the biggest coat with the biggest hood up and over and I play a video game while I’m walking my dogs.

Shay Kostabi: And that’s authentic too, right? Yeah. That’s authentic to you. But that doesn’t belong in the space where you are a teacher and a leader. So that’s what I mean. It’s, yeah, it’s the ability to turn aspects of yourself on and off so that you can show up, as I said before, and you’re most potent and powerful.

And actually make the change that you seek to meet, make for the clients that you serve, or for whatever it is that you’re showing up for. And, um, you know my, like a great example, my name’s not even Shay, that’s not my name, it’s not my nickname. Nobody called me shay growing up, I was working at a studio on the Upper East Side at the front desk, and they asked me to come in and take, they were first, they were like, if you want to work here, you have to take the cycling class.

And I was like, I don’t like bikes. Um, I took the class and I fell in love. Um, they invited me into the training. A couple weeks, weeks later, I was on the podium. My mom fell over on the floor laughing because I cannot ride a bike outside. I mean, I can, but my risk of getting hit by a car is pretty high. Um, so, uh, and I was just, I, I mean, something clicked.

I was like, this is for me. But the manager came in and she was like, so, your name doesn’t fit on the board. And this was when we had, you know, chalkboards that people would, oh, your name doesn’t fit on the board. It’s too long and it’s too hard to spell and pronounce and remember. And she said, and I said, great thanks.

And she said, do you have a nickname? And I said, no, nobody has ever had a hard time saying my name. That’s not true. Everybody has a hard time saying my name. But, uh, she said, can we call you Shelly? And I said, not if you like your two front teeth. And uh, and so I said, I have one friend that one time randomly called me Shay and said, my alter ego should be Shay.

And I didn’t even, alter ego, that’s like not even something I thought about. And she said, how do you spell it? I said, I have no idea. I have no idea. Um, and I, I really wanted it to be like c h e, like Che, but I, that’s

Lesley Logan: not right. (…) No, like in, based on this whole conversation I want it to be phonetic.

Shay Kostabi: So I was like, as long as it’s not s spelled like the cocoa butter, I don’t care. Um, so she’s spelled s h a y and I became Shay and I loved it because I was a brand new instructor. Uh, I was teaching on the Upper West, upper East side, excuse me. Which if, you know, it can be brutal. And um, I was still working as an actress and so it allowed me to kind of play the character of fitness instructor and not feel like.

I don’t know. It just allowed me the space to just show up to this one place and do that one thing at that time. And Shay was like, so cool and so powerful and like funky and funny and Shalene, which is my real name, is like kind of, you know, was like insecure and still trying to find her place in the world and all of those things.

I’m all of those things. Yeah. And now 15 years later I, I’m, I don’t currently teach, like I’m not on the board anywhere, but I’m still Shay. Yeah. And she feels exactly like me. Like they’re the same. Yeah. It almost helped me. Right. She

Lesley Logan: is the real me. This is the Be It Till You See It story. Yeah. Like this is it.

Like, yeah. I, there you go. Like that. You know what’s okay. And, um, I, I definitely wanna, I wanna get into what you’re passionate about right now, but I just wanna say like, I, um, resonate with that a lot. Like I, um, I don’t know when we started, somebody started calling me LL and that I was like, oh, I like that better.

Yeah.

Shay Kostabi: When you see it in writing. So like, I got your sheet on how to prepare and it says Lesley will do this, and then later it’s like when LL says, I was like, oh, listen up. Pay attention.

Lesley Logan: Yeah.

Shay Kostabi: There’s a little bit of like, there’s

Lesley Logan: something, you’re the boss. I’m the boss. Yeah. And like, oh yeah. So when I go to things like, oh my God, LL and I’m like, it’s kind.

It’s like it is. It is. Um, Uh, it is that next level version of me that I wanna make sure I’m like stepping. That’s like, there’s this power. Yeah. You know, like Cher has one name, like LL it’s, you know, it’s two initials, but there’s just something about it

Shay Kostabi: that makes it like, you know, it’s, it’s yours. It’s unique to you.

And what’s interesting is that it’s been given to you. So it’s a reflection of how people perceive you. Yeah. And then you have a responsibility to kind of live up to that. Yeah. Which means you have to be intentional. You have to be consistent. Right. And it has to be clear because that’s what people are expecting of you and it pushes you to like evolve and like be at your best.

But also in the appropriate arenas. So that you can. You know, it’s so many things, protect you from burnout. Guide you on a very clear career path. Attract brand partnerships. Um, it’s, it’s, it’s a little, it is a bit of like a protection at first, but then it ends up being like, you know, it turns sort of from your armor into your sword.

Like, it’s very cool. It’s very cool. This

Lesley Logan: is so fun. Um, I think Brad’s gonna love everything about this. I can’t wait for him to listen. Um, cool. Okay. I know you’re super passionate about something right now. Yeah. This feels like you’re super passionate about. Yes. But I also know there’s something else you’ve been working on.

I would love, I wanna make sure we get into it. So can you tell everyone what you’re excited about right now, what you’re working

Shay Kostabi: on? Yeah. The persona development is part of it. I’ve been teaching this for years. I’ve been coaching people through this. I’ve been helping people define this both from the instructor side and also on the brand side.

You know, understanding, um, your persona, your archetype, and your superpowers is so, um, intrinsic to, like, you need that to build a brand. Like it’s kind of where you start. And then of course as an instructor, it’s like how you show up. And then the thing that I’m most excited about, right, like right now that I talk about all the time, kind of in alignment with persona, they’re both very top of mind, is, um, flow states in regards to experience design, particularly in fitness.

So I think that stems from, again, my background in, in a family of artists and creatives, musicians, painters, um, the like sensory experience. The visuals, like the quality of things has always been really important. And then growing up as a dancer and being an actor and also working in production, both in film and um, like in theater.

Right. Like all of the psychological cues that are like built into things to draw people into a story and into an experience. Yeah. And then, you know, through the work that I’ve done through programming and brand building for fitness studios, it’s now evolved into, and experience is such a, like a buzzword right now.

Everybody’s like, it’s about the experience, the member experience. And yes. You know, people are like, you need AI, you need tech, you need this fancy thing. And I’m like, whoa, slow down. That’s, those are important and those are valuable tools, but like getting back to the basics. Ultimately when we think about an experience, an optimal experience, it’s something that is multisensory, that is immersive, that takes you out of the mundane of like ordinary life and transports you essentially out of time.

Mm-hmm. And is so addicting, so pleasurable that you will do almost anything to get back into that experience. Mm. Despite the challenges, which in fitness could be the difficulty of the workout. Yeah. Um, the cost, right? Yeah. And so, you know, I hear all these people, it’s like, everybody wants to know, what do I charge, right?

Like pre. Yeah. That’s something that you coach to, right? …(Lesley: Oh, yeah, yeah.) Which is so important. But again, when you are super clear on the experience that you’re providing and the value and you’re intentional, meaning that you can dictate the outcome price, I’m not saying it’s no object, like, um, you do have to consider it.

And there’s so many factors that come into play, but in regards to like what people are willing to pay. It’s like if it’s good people are gonna put their money down, they’re gonna make sacrifices for it. Well, I think

Lesley Logan: you’re what? I know you’re 100% correct because I was that person I could not afford Pilates like I could afford.

So I like you with the bike. I resisted going to Pilates class. I was like, that’s not gonna be great. Mm-hmm. And I went to this class and the teacher was so good at making sure I understood, even though it was my brand new class, that I understood how to do the exercise that I, and it wasn’t too slow and it wasn’t too fast.

It was like exactly like, got me into my body and I was like, whoa, what is this feeling that I have? Yeah. And then I got a membership to the, this boutique place where I could go between their five locations. I can go to class every single day. That that membership was expensive. I had to get out of a gym membership that I had because I couldn’t afford both.

Mm-hmm. And then it was expensive for me at the time. It’s nowhere near expensive now, but it was expensive. Isn’t that funny? At the time, yeah. And when I moved to LA that membership would be more expensive and I couldn’t get to class every day. And I was like, okay. So then I found a person who could teach me, um, I could afford a private a month.

Basically, uh, but she was doing, or she found me a duet partner and I could go every other week. And so I would take my little Pilates book and do it every day at home. And then I would go to this duet twice a month and I would make sure I could afford that. And eventually I figured out a way to afford it every week.

I don’t know. Right? Nothing changed in my life, but I like made that happen because the experience was so good. And I think people like that, having me aspire to even afford that was actually a journey I needed to go on. …(Shay: Ooh, that’s good.) Um, so that, I, I just, it just was, I, I really valued, I never missed, I never missed my every other week session because I didn’t wanna go.

So, I didn’t wanna miss like a month. So I think like, one, focusing on the experience we give allows people to reason, they’ll figure the price out themselves. Like the budget is not our job. The budget is their job at our job is to make sure that they feel so seen, so heard. And so like they got so much out of that.

And too often I hear people, and this is gonna another tangent and I wanna get back to flow states, but hey, like, oh, what should I give people to get more clients? It’s like you cannot pay them to tell their friends. The experience has to speak

Shay Kostabi: for itself. So they just tell people. Give them, give them a better experience.

Yeah, give them, so when we talk about flow states, it’s, again, it’s that sensation of, well, you tell me. What does being in flow feel like for you? Like when you into that class, what, what are some of the sensations that you felt

Lesley Logan: you lose track of time. I did not look at the clock once ever, ever in a class.

Good answer.

Shay Kostabi: Yeah. Anything else?

Lesley Logan: Um, I think it’s so, it’s so easy to turn off life. Like you can have, like, you can like literally be like lifeing it and like, you know, and then the class starts and like, you forgot the email that drove you crazy earlier that day. Cuz you’re like, in that

Shay Kostabi: moment. That’s called hypofrontality.

That happens when a certain number of triggers happen and your thinking brain turns off and so therefore you have no concept of time. And it can feel, for some people it, it’s like, class started and then it’s over, and you’re like, whoa, what, what just happened? I blinked. That was so incredible. And for some people it’s like, oh my gosh, I just, it was like a lifetime, but in a good way, right?

Mm-hmm. When time drags, when you’re constantly checking the clock, that’s the wrong kind of lifetime. But there’s other times where it feels really expansive and you don’t wanna leave. And so it’s a little bit different for everybody, but the suspension of time and turning off of life, um, like that thinking brain are exactly what you’re going for.

That state is so addictive. So when that happens, your brain releases a ton of chemicals. The ones we always hear, dopamine, oxytocin, um, um, endorphins, anandamides. So there’s all of these things. And that cocktail, that specific cocktail is so addicting that humans, it’s one of the things we live for, we will seek it out over and over and over again.

Mm-hmm. One of the coolest things about dopamine is that it’s the molecule of more. So if you can turn it on, um, you know, as a facilitator, as somebody who creates an experience that, that releases the dopamine. Um, you, you are, you’ll, you’re always, it never ends. It always will want more. There is no satisfaction.

There is no end point. Mm-hmm. So this ties directly into. Um, how long your clients stay with you and how often they come back. So when you start to understand what’s actually happening in people’s brains and then learn tools to activate, right, to trigger the release of those chemicals and support that suspension of time, and then learn what the disruptors are so that you stop doing them.

Now you’re starting to create an environment where we can’t make people get into flow, right? And it’s not guaranteed, but we can create an the environment where that’s very suitable for it and it’s most likely to happen more often. And then you’ve got your clients hooked on your experience in like the best way, like the best kind of addiction.

And then you support that with all the of the other things that we talk about right In, in business and when we are all of the things I’m sure you’ve touched on in your trainings and your, right, but it kind of starts from like, really what we’re selling is an experience. And I say this all the time, nobody cares about your workout.

You know, it, it, it really isn’t the Pilates, it’s not the bike. Those, those are the vehicles. And if you, if you do it right, and you use the tools well people are like, I love Pilates. But you, you really could have given them something else as long as you understand how to get them into a flow state, you know?

Lesley Logan: Yeah. Yeah. And you know what, like, I think this is this, um, my brain is like thinking, like when people are like, oh, people talk in my classes. It’s like, you’re not, you’re not getting them into a place where they just listen to you. You’re not commanding that room. You’re, that’s your fault. Yeah. Your experience is not, uh, you’re not in charge.

They’re in charge. And so you’re not like that. And, and they will, they’ll last as long as they are entertained to talk to each other in that class. Mm-hmm. That’s not, they’re not gonna be, they’re not there for you. Right. So I think this is like, it’s such a challenge, um, because it forces us to really own certain values.

And I think people are afraid to do things like that because rules and values and, and having things in place require you to repel certain people.

Shay Kostabi: So part of building a community and, and an experience for a community is, um, everybody talks about core values, but we don’t often talk about constraints.

They go together. So you have your, if you imagine a circle, you have your core values in the middle, like that’s your operating system. That’s where everything stems from. And then you have like, A, a little metal circle with some doorways. Right. Those are your constraints. Mm-hmm. And the constraints are not to keep people out or to push them out, they’re to keep the people who truly belong in this community safe.

Mm. Right. And it, so it’s not about turning people away, it’s about making sure that the people that are right for you feel a deep sense of belonging and appreciation and trust and safety. People like us do this here. People like us do not do this here. And if you want to come play, you can’t do this thing.

And it’s not to punish you or keep you out. It’s so that when you’re in here and you, and if this is a place you feel like you belong, you feel safe. Oh, I

Lesley Logan: love this reframe so much because I do think that people start to feel bad. They’re like, well, if I’m not for everybody, then I’m not like doing this thing.

It’s like,

Shay Kostabi: actually, you can’t be for everybody. You can’t be for everybody.

Lesley Logan: You just fucking can’t. You just can’t. There are people who will hate this podcast. They’ll hate the sound on my voice. They’ll hate what I have to say. They’ll whatever. Like, right. But like if you’re like, you, everyone is welcome if you follow these things, these

Shay Kostabi: rules.

So simple things and these, so this is both about, this is so, this is so great. This ties into community and culture. This ties into experience and flow states. So if you say door, there is no late entry doors closed. Class starts at seven, doors are closed at seven. You can’t even come in five minutes late.

Right. People get mad about that, but what you’re doing is you are setting standards and expectations, right? And you’re key. You are ensuring that everybody who showed up on time and is there, is now fully immersed in the experience without distractions, the door’s not gonna open, the light’s not gonna creep in.

Somebody’s not gonna step over your mat or like around your thing or hit you in the head with their bag or whatever the deal is. Same thing with no cell phones, same thing with where you put your personal items and what’s allowed, you know, food and drink and all of, um, clothing attire. All of these things are, are really about controlling the environment in a way that again allows for the best possible outcome to happen, the best experience.

Mm-hmm. So you can’t feel bad about that because it’s serving the people that, that want to be there. It’s,

Lesley Logan: it’s all comes down to like, like for whatever reason, well, not whatever. There’s a specific reason. Our brain is so conditioned to the negative that we are not seen that there are 15 people who showed up on time and they actually want to be here on time and they put their stuff where it is and you’re like, oh gosh, I don’t want this one person who’s always 10 minutes late to get mad.

And it’s like, but these 15 people love you like that, that they, there’s 15 of ’em and we are so like, oh my gosh, with this one person, it’s like, you got that one person needs to, you have to be the lesson that that person needs to learn, which is, I have to be up on time for things I wanna

Shay Kostabi: have change in my life.

Right, exactly. Or you shift their beliefs and you get them on your page or they’re not for you. Yeah. Yes. Everything you said, you, you nailed it. It’s this,

Lesley Logan: uh, this has me like this, this has me so excited because I’ve been really trying to work on this with, with the people that we work with for years.

Because there’s this whole, like, if I niche down, then I’m not gonna have enough clients. It’s like, well, that’s not true. And there’s, there’s so many people on this planet.

that is

Shay Kostabi: a false narrative. I can tell you with all the people that we, this is what we specialize in, it’s like, you are going to define your niche and you are gonna get hardcore specific.

Every single person that has done that has tripled their income within 90 days. Yeah. Because

Lesley Logan: also you, there are people, like, there are people who will aspire to be that person and like that. So you, you, it’s like there we’re, we’re so afraid that we’re we’re gonna, um, that we’re, we’re gonna leave people out.

Mm-hmm. That we’re not really understanding that we’re, our job is to actually be there for the people that are in. And then those people have such an amazing experience. They, their friends who’ve been looking for this reason, looking for something to change their life. They’re like, Oh my gosh. I’m gonna, I wanna, like, I wanna change to be that person.

We have to be, we have to be willing to stand up for what we believe in and allow people to rise up to that level, because otherwise we’re just, it’s like a class. You, I, I, I, uh, an all levels class is really hard because you’re, if you don’t do it right. You’re teaching to the beginner who just walked into the class.

Yes. And really, you have to teach to the person you want people to be, and then offer options up and down. Right.

Shay Kostabi: But, Ooh, let, can I, can I, yes, yes. This ties directly into flow state. Is this so true? Okay. So yes. You always teach, you teach to the aspirational identity. You teach to the strongest person in the room, and then we hear this all the time.

You need the modifications and, and the options. The reason for this, the scientific reason is something called CS Level or CS balance, which is your challenge, skill, balance. This is so important and it’s kind of a reframe when you think about it this way. In order for someone to have an optimal experience to potentially drop into flow state, this really powerful place that we’re talking about where time is suspended and we just can’t wait to get back to it, right?

You want people to come back to your class over and over again. The challenge that you provide must match the skill level of the participants. How do you do that in a group fitness class when everybody’s at a different level and you have your front row people who are diehards and you’ve got this new person who just came in.

This comes down to how you coach and how you cue and how you program making sure that you are prepared and intentional and, and you and your eyes are open and you’re looking around the room. I have been in so many classes where the instructor does not even really look at what’s happening.

Like that person’s knees are buckle. I just watched the class the other day. I’m like, oh, that person can’t even squat. Why are you adding squat jumps? Why are you doing that, please? You know? So you have to have your eyes open. And I think when you understand why underneath, so if the challenge is high and the skill level is low, this turns on our fight or flight mechanism.

We go into panic and anxiety and ultimately we feel like I don’t belong. There’s multiple levels at play here. What you were talking about, that sense of belonging, right? You can’t be for everybody. Everybody just wants to belong. That’s all anybody wants. And we are so starved for it. I mean, people are sick over isolation and feeling like they don’t have a place.

You make a place for everybody and you make a place for nobody. There has to be a place. Again, it ties back to where we started, your core values, your abilities, your belief, what you believe your service can do for people. The change that you seek to make. Those have to be really specific because I love music festivals, but I don’t wanna go to stage coach, right?

That place is not for me. I just because I love music festivals doesn’t mean that all music festivals are for me, just because I love fitness or even Pilates does not mean that every Pilate studio is for me and it shouldn’t be, right? I don’t want to be one of a million, you know? I want to be a
part of something bigger than myself and I want, and you said I wanna feel seen and heard, so again, Coming back to the specifics of it, when the challenge level is high, but the skill level of the participant is low, it’s so off.

This is when they go back into hyper frontality, they start thinking about life. Right. They’re not even listening to you. They’re so concerned about their performance. Yeah. They’re like looking around at other people and they’re like, can I do this workout? Will I ever be able to do this workout? Do I fit in here?

Is the instructor gonna help me? And I always teach people when I’m training instructors, like, we really wanna know, what am I doing right? How can I do it better? That might mean the progression or the how can I be better? Yeah. Why am I, why am I pushing so hard sometimes? And then when it gets really hard, how long am I doing it for?

Yes. We don’t always need to know. It’s only when it’s really hard that we need to know for how long. So again, this your coaching, your ability to observe, um, you know, and how you adjust the programming to help that person get closer to a state where they experience flow. Something called unconscious competence where, uh, you’re not thinking about the action anymore.

You’re able to just perform it. Yes. That’s why you give the modification. It’s not just ability, it’s the sense of belonging and inclusion. When the challenge level is low, but the skill level of the participant is high, now we have apathy. I don’t care about this workout. Why am I here? We do have to have some challenge.

Otherwise there’s no point in engaging. Right. When the challenge is high in the skill level is high. This is the most optimal place for people to go into flow. But it’s still, it’s, it’s just so easy, right? Yeah. It’s like it matches, I’m like at my best, but you can still have a high challenge with like a lower skill level.

Again, as long as you make the adjustments and you’re conscious of what’s happening and you make that person feel like it’s achievable and they belong here, even if they can’t perform the exercise with, I’m using so much jargon, but professionals are listening. Unconscious competence. You know, the ability to just do it without thinking.

I actually really

Lesley Logan: love this. Um, this is something that like with OPC onlinepilatesclasses.com, it’s our website, um, it’s a hard thing to do. It’s a virtual experience, but it’s a community. Mm-hmm. Yeah. So all these things in place to make sure that people feel the community and and our values are, are all over it.

But one of the things that I’m so, cuz Pilates can be so hard, if you on the mat, it’s the fucking hardest. Like, it’s just the hardest guys. I. I can, I can give you all the modifications of the world and it’s still not gonna get your hips over your head if you don’t have the skill level to do it. So one of the things that we love to say, and it’s like, and, and I love when I see our members actually say it, is, um, it’s brave and courageous to replace this exercise with one we’ve already done.

So if this is not where you’re at yet, then whatever we’ve already done, that was a challenge for you. Not easy. Go to that. It’s a challenge for you. Go to that. Just repeat that. Because it’s all compounding and we, uh, we say it all the time because I know that we have new people showing up that’s their first time, and we have other people who need to be reminded 28 times now to, to like for it to click.

And it’s, because also, I don’t want people to not ever reach the level of the most advanced exercises, right? Because your body can do that. Your body can do that at a lot of ages. It just has to be built up to it. So I think that this, thank you for the confirmation. I have more confidence in myself now.

Um, But also, um, I, I, I also think that it’s just been, it’s a really great reminder for everyone listening that like, your job is to get people in this flow state, and you get them in there because of the experience you provide and you, you, you give them an opportunity to rise up, so that everyone can be part of this community.

You’re so fucking awesome. I love you. We, we could talk for hours. We’re gonna have to like, have our own like spinoff shows. I think everyone, everyone will wanna hang out. We’ll just do a show. Yeah. Um, we’re gonna take a quick break and we’re gonna um, uh, find out where people can find you, follow you, and of course Be It action items.

All right, Shay. So you’ve given us so much. But, um, before we do our Be It action items, where can people find you, follow you, stalk you, do personal work with you?

Shay Kostabi: Ha uh, well first you can go to Fitness Career Mastery, fitnesscareermastery.com. That’s also the name of the podcast. Uh, Instagram Handle @fitnesscareermastery.

And then specifically for the instructor side, you can go on Instagram. It’s @theGroupx_conservatory. So I do conservatory like training. I do a masterclass every single month. I sometimes do like 30 day intensives. Uh, also work with people one-on-one and privately in studio. And you can learn about that @fitnesscareermastery as well.

Lesley Logan: Amazing. All right. Bold, executable, intrinsic, targeted steps people can take to be it till they see it.

Shay Kostabi: Okay, so we’ve been talking about this the whole time. Superpowers are truly the key to unlocking your potential. As I’ve mentioned, stemmed from your core values and beliefs, your unique attributes, your abilities, your skills, your interests.

It’s the foundation for both your personal life, like knowing your superpowers, um, helps you figure out what kind of community you belong in or like what kind of Pilates studio you want to attend or workout or fitness program you want to attend. And then on the professional side, it really is part of the foundation of building a brand and a community, what kind of Pilates studio you should have and who you’re meant to serve.

And they’re so unique and, and like that really is your differentiator, like how it comes together. There might be other people like you. Like I feel like Lesley and I like hang out in the same like area. But we are not the same. You know, like when you really get down to it and our superpowers are so different, they might be in alignment.

So like that’s where. You know, Lesley and I can share the same, or we can serve the same people, but how we do that is ultimately gonna be so unique to us, even if we were going off the same script. So for the instructors out there, once you know this, I could give everybody the same program with the same playlist.

It’s gonna come out differently from every single person, particularly when you know who you are. And it’s like your life really opens up when you get super clear on this. So here’s how you do it. You’re gonna get out a sheet of paper and you’re gonna make like a Venn diagram. That’s what it’s called, right?

Yeah. Circles, three circles, three big circles, and they need to overlap. And there’s gonna be like a little space in the middle that makes kind of like a triangle. And in one circle you’re gonna write down all your core values. So these are your non-negotiables, the things that matter most to you, the things that give your life, meaning, purpose, and direction.

You could do this for your business separately as well. They’re, they should be different. There will be overlap, but they should be different. Um, you can Google values, but things like authenticity, consistency, trust, respect, community, um, travel, right? All the things that you’re like, if I didn’t have these things, I, I can’t operate.

And then the next circle, you’re gonna put your skills and abilities, both those that you were gifted with by nature or nurture, and some of the ones that you’ve acquired along the way. They don’t have to be things that you like. Just write down your skills and abilities, the stuff that makes you weird.

The things like, think about the things that people come to you for and don’t just, if you work in fitness, don’t just write down fitnessy things. Write, tell all the things that you’re great at. And then the last one, you’re gonna put your interests. So all of the things that you love to do. And the easiest way to do this is to look at your bank account and your calendar, because you may say that your interest is, you know, books. But if you haven’t bought a book in a year, you either need to find a way to get back to that or maybe readjust. Whenever I do this, I’m like, oh, I always say that I love X. And I’m like, I don’t do that anymore. So this is a no matter, even if you’re like, I know my persona, I know my superpowers. This is a great exercise to just check in cuz things change.

And then in each circle they’re gonna overlap, right? So core values will overlap with interests. Interests will overlap with skills and abilities, right? And in the middle, it’s blank. You gotta figure that out. This is kind of where I come in and help people usually, cuz it’s hard to read the label from outside the bottle.

Yeah. But in that center is where your superpowers lie and that is the gift that you bring to the world and you are doing a disservice to yourself and everyone around you if you are not showing up and using that every single day. Both like in the studio and like in your relationships and your life. So quick example is, you know, if I were to look at my core values, some of them are teaching and mentorship, community travel, um, uh, creativity, right?

Experiences, and then my abilities are many. I’ve listed lots of them. Right. Um, and then interests. There’s a lot of overlap there. So, um, just sort of touching on that, when I look at the overlap and I come to my super, one of my superpowers is the ability to take two sometimes seemingly unrelated or even conflicting ideas and finding that intersection to carve out a unique path to mastery, that is ultimately what I do for my clients. Right? I can see both sides. And that is pulled from my experience, my core values, my interests and my skills. Teaching and mentorship is also a skill. Experience design is an, is a skill.

I’m deeply passionate about flow states, but I’ve also acquired the skills. I have taken courses, re read books, um, actually put it to the test like through trial and error. So then it becomes, it feeds into my superpowers and I show up. I talk about these things every day. I use them every single day, whether it’s helping my friend make a decision because they’re like, I have this, but I want this, and where do I go? And I’m like, well, don’t you see this way? And let’s just put it together like this, and here’s your steps. Boom. Or a client comes and they’re like, I wanna do a Pilates class on an airplane. And I’m like, cool, let’s figure it out.

You know, whatever it is. So, you know, so …(Lesley: I love, yeah. I love a puzzle). Yeah. So when you write it down, you’re gonna look, you’re like, okay, these are my superpowers. And then the next step is really like, think, you know, ask, ask your friends, the people that love you, like, you know, how do, so this tries into persona, like, how do you perceive this?

Like, this is my skill. Show me how it, it, like how does that resonate with you? And then you can start to, so many things come out of this. It like, it gives you a mission and direction, a purpose. And when you start from there, you get to bring your best self to the table every single day and work in your zone of genius and find allies who compliment your superpowers. Like build your A team to like help you. Whether it’s a business partnership or a board or just a group of friends who are like, I know you, I see you and you’re clear and I can help you.

Lesley Logan: Yeah. Ooh, I love this because, um, I think no matter who you are, listening to this, figuring out what your persona is can really help you show up in the best ways for anything that’s intimidating you.

And anytime that you’re like, oh my gosh, I have to like, go talk to these people, it’s like, well, That persona is obviously not gonna be scared of those people. And so you can like, show up and, and show off how amazing you are. Shay, you are such a light. You are so fun. Um, I can’t wait for our first in-person date of ever hanging out, but we’re gonna have a great weekend.

We have to make it happen. We’re gonna make it happen. Um, thank you so much everyone for listening to this. Thank you Shay, for just spreading all of your goodness. We’ll have to have you back. And how are you going to use these tips in your life? Make sure you tag Shay, tag the Be It Pod, share this with a friend, share with five friends.

You’ll probably wanna listen to it a couple times because we talked about so many amazing things. Write some notes and until next time, Be It Till You See It.

Lesley Logan
That’s all I’ve got for this episode of the Be It Till You See It podcast. One thing that would help both myself and future listeners is for you to rate this show and leave a review. And, follow or subscribe for free wherever you listen to podcasts. Also, make sure to introduce yourself over on IG at the @be_it_pod on Instagram. I would love to know more about you. Share this episode with whoever you think needs to hear it. Help us help others to BE IT TILL YOU SEE IT. Have an awesome day!

Lesley Logan
‘Be It Till You See It’ is a production of the ‘Bloom Podcast Network’.

Brad Crowell
It’s written, filmed and recorded by your host, Lesley Logan and me, Brad Crowell.

Lesley Logan
It is produced and edited by the epic team at Disenyo.

Brad Crowell
Our theme music is by Ali at APEX Production Music. And our branding by designer and artist, Gianfranco Cioffi.

Lesley Logan
Special thanks to Melissa Solomon for creating our visuals and Ximena Velasquez for our transcriptions.

Brad Crowell
Also to Angelina Herico for adding all the content to our website. And finally to Meridith Crowell for keeping us all on point and on time.

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