Money Diaries: Living On $59k As A Yoga Teacher In NYC

Photo: Stocksy

Money Diaries is a new series focused on how the wellness community makes and spends money. We believe money is one of the last taboos in the wellness world: Why is it that we can talk about our sex lives and not our salaries? With an underlying drive to empower, we’re aiming to give you a peek into the diverse day-to-day lives, decisions, priorities, and lifestyles of the wellness world. 

Keep it simple: That's the mantra of this yoga teacher, who makes about $60,000 annually teaching yoga and participating in yoga-related events. This city dweller loves dining out, invests in body work, and splurges on a pair of jeans in the weeklong diary below.

Occupation: Yoga Teacher

  • Annual salary: approximately $58,800
  • Income per month: $4,900 before taxes
  • Location: New York, NY
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Money philosophy

"Financial success is not everything. It’s about the quest of what makes you feel great, things that are beyond anything money can buy. A lot of the practice encourages that you don’t need too much. I don’t want to be hustling my whole life teaching yoga…and I’m human: we live in material world. That said, I don’t love money, and I’m quick to spend it. Some weeks, like this one, I spend more, and then some I pull back. It's about staying balanced with what's coming in. "

Income sources

  • Group classes: 20 percent
  • Teacher trainings: 17 percent
  • Mentorships: 12 percent
  • Privates: 28 percent

Recurring monthly bills

  • Rent: $1,795
  • Insurance for teaching yoga: $13/month
  • Bills: $150 to $270 (this includes heat, electricity, and water)
  • Spotify: $9.99
  • Phone: $140
  • Internet, cable, etc.: $40

Total: $2,147.99 to $2,267.99 per month in bills

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Regular self-care

  • Therapy: $150/week
  • Bodywork: $250/every other week
  • Monthly supplements and herbs: $100

Total: $1,200 per month on self-care

Monthly savings contributions: [401(k), vacation fund, etc.]

  • Roth IRA: $100 to $150
  • Personal savings: $150
  • Any projects, events, extra/odd jobs that come up (additional to income)

Total: $300+ per month in savings

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Debt payments

None, I’m fortunate enough to have paid off my credit card debt and student loans a few years ago.

Here's what I bought in a week.

Day 1

Photo: Unsplash

  • $4 cappuccino from the local cafe before I taught a very large class—I need a rush of energy as I take on a packed room.
  • $12 vegi-talian sandwich and ginger ale from the corner grocer. I'm between privates and on the go, so need some fuel to keep me going
  • $40 drinks at a local bar for a friend's birthday!
  • $50 dinner trying a new neighborhood restaurant post birthday drinks with some fellow teachers

Total: $106

Day 2

  • $50 late lunch at the Dutch
  • Breakfast and dinner at home :)

Today is my pseudo day off (only teach one class at night), so I treated myself to a nice meal with my girlfriend and took a stroll through SoHo.

Total: $50

Day 3

  • $4 cappuccino from THINK before an early morning private
  • $6 bought a yogurt parfait to go to eat during a studio meeting
  • $50 groceries from Whole Foods for the week!
  • Lunch at home: I made a spinach salad with avocado.
  • Dinner at home was quinoa, soft-boiled egg, sautéed kale, and chickpeas :)

Total: $60

Day 4

  • $6 coffee and egg wrap from a coffee shop between privates in the a.m.
  • $10 Sweetgreen salad :)
  • Dinner at home was pasta with olive oil, anchovy, capers, and a little parm.

Total: $16

Day 5

Photo: Stocksy

  • Free (sponsored!) lunch at a cute downtown restaurant
  • $250 Rolfing session…expensive but totally worth it for my self-care
  • I did a photoshoot this month, which will net me about $1,000 extra give or take. Love it when that happens. $120 new jeans after my Rolfing treat
  • $100 double date at Buvette

Total: $350

Day 6

  • $150 weekly therapy...also totally worth it for my own sanity!
  • $30 night out with my best friend…free event, but spent $$ on cabs that night to get us around the town!

Total: $180

Day 7

  • $6 Moon Juice Maca Activated walnuts
  • $20 lunch out with friends after free SoulCycle class

Maybe a fun sample sale splurge in my future…friend just came in with some CUTE things!

Total: $29

Weekly Total: $821

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