We had the good fortune of connecting with Jaime Sense and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jaime, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
I don’t know that I’ve ever approached this particular business the way that many would – but that’s less about business and more about people. Our teachers are the secret sauce and I enjoy creating the container where people can show up to do their truest work…in this case, teaching. Yoga is a beautiful and sacred practice and the industry-at-large, is going through a bit of a reckoning right now. This is a powerful and potent tool for tapping into a deeper knowing and understanding of the world and a collective ability to heal when utilized properly. Still, there is a lot about the current colonized, capitalist structure and system – of which I and my business participate and benefit – that is really broken and there is a lot to explore about how we can reconcile that – certainly for me as a studio owner but also as an industry. I suppose the most important factor in the current success of our brand aside from working to build authentic relationships within our teaching and student community is a hope that if I, personally, do right by those around me and that if I do my own self-inquiry and reflection from a place of non-harm and highest good, there will be an audience that resonates with that too. It may not be the biggest audience, and BBY will probably (definitely) not be the next 10x company but that has never been what it is about for me. Success – for me – is trying my best to be a good human and modeling that humanity to the amazing little boy that chose me to be his mama along with all of the other people who choose to be part of my world.
What should our readers know about your business?
I said it earlier but truly, the teachers at BBY are what set us apart. They are one of the things that I am most proud of and also most excited about. Every single person who has chosen to share their time, talent and energy with our community has an amazing ability to hold-space, guide, facilitate, teach and share this practice in a really potent and meaningful way. This year specifically, but really the past few, have been a true learning experience for me personally as well as professionally. Stepping into this role helped me realize that to hold a container for culture in a way that is authentic to my personal ethos meant doing even more personal work and getting comfy with acknowledging all that I don’t know (or learned incorrectly) pretty dang regularly. And that is also a challenge because I ask the teachers to do the same inquiry. We talk a lot about equity at BBY and what that means in the context of our own community but also our role in the wellness industry. While we have a lot of work to do, it is a conversation that is true to my heart and one that every teacher and (I hope) community member is familiar with. As a studio, we are dedicated to working toward anti-racism daily, and continually reassessing what it means to be ‘in the work.’ This has shifted significantly this year as Covid has forced us to pivot and change how we teach and interact in the community and while this is a work-in-progress for me, I continue to assess what and how our studio can continue to show up in meaningful ways. The yoga industry is in an interesting time, highlighted by coronavirus and a new civil rights movement. I can tell you that as a cisgender, white woman, owning a studio in a predominantly white, affluent, neighborhood, I have the recognition that I/we likely do not feel like a comfortable or safe space for many folks who do not look like me to practice or teach and I acknowledge that. As we work to *hopefully* change this sentiment over time, I would love to see those of us in ownership roles share more resources, amplify underrepresented voices, magnify, support and distribute the work of yoga practitioners who are Black, Indigenous, and People of Color as well as to continue to learn about and offer opportunities to practice anti-racism in our daily practices…yoga and otherwise.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
As a lifelong Coloradoan, I’m going to have to give a nod to my hometown of Fort Collins. A walk through old town, a visit to O’dell or Equinox Brewing and stop at the Pickle Barrel would be on my list for the afternoon as would a drive up the Poudre Canyon for a hike along Young’s Gulch or over Horsetooth Reservoir if time permitted. And of course, back in Denver no visit would be complete without seeing the iconic Redrocks Amphitheatre. I am also a huge fan of Mexican food and have a couple North Denver favorites so will shoutout to both Chili Verde and Necio and definitely Racines for a breakfast marg, if that’s your thing. Either and/or both Cervantes’ and the Walnut Room for a show and a slice of pie would also be on the short list. A visit to Su Teatro for a performance, located in the Santa Fe Arts District would be an afternoon well spent. A stop at Pinwheel Coffee for your morning (or afternoon cuppa) and a stroll down Tennyson St. or through the old warehouse district (RiNo) to round out an afternoon with options for any number of tasty places to stop for a bite to eat. Check out Courageous Yoga or Satya Yoga Cooperative and Guided by Humanity for lovely local opportunities to connect in breath and community.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Dang…well, this list could get long but I would definitely not be where I am right now without the endless encouragement, support and patience of my partner in this life, Brian Sense. He is the one who helps me overcome the unhelpful and limiting stories that I have a tendency to tell myself and is also crazy talented and can do pretty much anything so that has been really beneficial in building (quite literally the physical building) a business as well. I would also like to mention all of the teachers who have given BBY their time and talent as well as a handful of my personal mentors and teachers who have served to illuminate my thinking in immeasurable ways including; Gina Caputo, Jonny Walker (datdudejonny) and Kari Kwinn, all of whom have gifted me with potent advice and leadership during the course of my journey. Thank you.
Meg O’Neill Photography https://runwildwithmephotography.com/