Are you ready to learn about the amazing possibilities of self care for teachers? Whether as a teacher that wants to stay in the classroom, or a teacher that wants to leave the classroom, teacher self care plays a huge role. Brooklyn did not take the traditional route of just selling her ideas or resources on Teachers Pay Teachers. No, Brooklyn has a very unique story. She was formerly a classroom teacher. Taught for five years in kindergarten and first grade in one year and second as well. But her husband is in the military and so she moves around a lot. They just moved right outside Columbus, Georgia from Alaska.
Brooklyn says, “Alaska is beautiful, but it's just very dark and depressing and the winters are very long. And so it definitely takes a toll on you especially being from Florida originally. It's so nice to be back in the sunshine. I can't even explain it. It's just a whole different vibe here. Like it just feels like home.”
Brooklyn Powell was originally a classroom teacher for five years and worked at a gym all through high school and college. She worked in the kids club and front desk. So her first year of teaching, she decided she wanted to get her personal training certifications. She never planned on leaving the classroom. Her original idea was actually to train teachers. She had a niche from the get-go, even though she didn't know that that was a thing at the time. She really wanted to train teachers on weekends and in the summertime, because that's when she would have free time.
Fast forward a few years, she was still doing it on the side, but online and never actually trained in person because this online training thing opened up for her. An awesome opportunity to train teachers virtually all over the world on their time schedule as well. So once she got pregnant, she was going to take longer maternity leave. She wanted to take just a year off. She was teaching kindergarten at the time and it was a really hard year for her in Alaska. She was commuting to work really far and it was just rough. So she planned on taking a year but also needed it to match her teacher salary. After a successful year, it didn't really make sense for her to leave her daughter and go back into the classroom when she could do more from home.
Brooklyn might have made it sound easy as she chats about it. But we all know the real struggle. Behind the scenes. So I had her take it back to the beginning. Take it back to when it was hard. When she was really just trying to find her footing. She was teaching full-time, pregnant, and trying to make this all work. We switched gears and talked about those days when things were, I guess you could call them scrappy.
It didn't just happen overnight. It was five years of Brooklyn doing both, teaching in a classroom, and teaching online every weekend and evening she had available. She thinks she could have probably accelerated making her side hustle full time if she had wanted to. She just really enjoyed being in the classroom. She didn't feel the need to go all-in with it. But it was a lot of late nights and a lot of juggling. She didn't have any free time really because when she wasn't teaching, she was working on online stuff. And as you know, there's so much that goes into an online business. People just don't really see behind the scenes. It was 5 years until she finally built up a client base to where she was able to leave teaching. She still wasn't making exactly what she was teaching. She still had to hustle. It was hard. And It was a lot of doing all the things when everyone else was doing their own thing on the weekends.
I know as a reader you may have started selling lesson plans online or going on Teachers Pay Teachers. one big thing that we encourage is to really understand Search Engine Optimization (SEO) in order to get your product out to the masses. But what Brooklyn does is unique because she’s coaching and training people. It's more of a one-on-one situation, which is a great stepping stone for some of our students that are moving into the coaching realm. Which by the way I think is the million-dollar ticket for teachers. Become a coach in 2021 or 2022, because that's what we are every single day. We are the coach and cheerleader and teacher.
What Brooklyn realized as she began the journey into the one-on-one setting of self-care for teachers is finding prospects is hard. It's not as easy as just putting your resources on Teachers Pay Teachers and having random strangers finding you and buying your stuff. You have to really develop a connection and a relationship with people because they're probably paying you more money straight out the gate. Which means they have to trust you.
Brooklyn actually still talks to her first-person daily. The one that originally said yes, I want to work with you. She does graphic design work for her now. She actually randomly found Brooklyn through Instagram. She was the first person that Brooklyn ever worked with that she didn't know beforehand. She was her first true online client. It can be really hard to find people because it's a higher ticket item. It's not just a $4 resource on TPT. You do have to build that trust and those relationships first. A lot of Brooklyn’s clients now come from referrals. So people talk about her on their Instagram story or in passing with their friends or family and that's how she get clients mostly. Since it's a 1:1 it definitely requires building those relationships because people are not just going to pay her a monthly fee in the hundreds of dollars region for no reason. Especially if they don't know anything about her, they have to really trust her for the 1:1 to work.
We cannot forget that word of mouth marketing is a thing just because it’s online. People are all into Facebook ads and they're all into Instagram ads. But what Brooklyn said is the way that her business has found success is because people talk about her to their friends and they refer to her. She does get most of her clients from Instagram. She doesn't do any ads or anything right now. It's either Instagram or they've watched her for a while. Just like any business, they don't just buy right away. That's how we found Brooklyn too. We would get a lot of people in our messages that wanted us to interview her because they were very interested in what she had going on. She was able to take a very, very saturated market, of online personal training, and get seen in this huge, crazy world, and that’s hard. But what she did was break it down into a smaller niche, which is just so beautiful. She is a 1:1 trainer support self care for teachers.
99% of her clients are teachers. She’s had a few nurses by word of mouth. Because their friend who was a teacher worked with her, but most of her clients are teachers. The teacher world is really just taking over the internet, which is so much fun you can be anything you want to be to support teachers. And it's so nice to see people taking care of the people that matter the most in this world, in my opinion.
We have some life coaches that we have chatted with. We have people that want to coach that are big on writing that are teaching English as a second language. But coaching is part of the idea of the business that they want to build. I wanted to really dive into what her 1:1 model looks like because there is so much opportunity to be unique. So someone reaches out to Brooklyn and they want to work with her. If someone reaches out and wants to talk about one-on-one coaching, she sets up a call with them to talk about things face to face. She uses Voxer access, which is like a messaging app. So they're able to message, and text through there and send videos if they want.
But it's really just being able to still feel like she has those relationships with colleagues. Even though she’s not physically in the classroom and actually going to work every day, she is still able to have those relationships. And she’s worked with some of her clients for over two years now.
Actually, although her title gets thrown around as personal training, in some ways she is a personal trainer. But online coaching is different from let's say going to a gym and signing up with a personal trainer because in the gym, they're giving you workouts. And they're helping you with your workouts each week. Whereas what Brooklyn does is a lot more intensive. It's an actual coach working with you on nutrition. She is giving you your macros. Checking in every single week, making adjustments to your plan as needed. She is really creating a custom training plan for you. So yes it is the training and the workouts, but it's a lot more than that too.
She does weekly check-ins, which is very in-depth, and then monthly zoom calls and access to her on Voxer. So it's much more of like a life coach thing versus just a personal trainer giving someone workouts. It's about what your goals are and where you're starting. And it's designed for teachers specifically. Everyone is different. It's not a cookie-cutter plan. If you're someone who wants to lose weight or build muscle, basically implement a healthier lifestyle, that's really what she does. Then create a plan that works best for you with your schedule as a busy teacher and something that's going to be realistic for you to stick to.
Brooklyn does offer both one-on-one and group coaching. 1:1 is a higher ticket offer. She also has a self care for teachers group program called Teach, Move, Nourish, and she gives all of her one-on-one clients access to that program if they want. With the group coaching, it's a weekly zoom call that they do together. Like workshop calls as a group, they all get the same workouts. They do weekly challenges and giveaways but it's much more of a community feel. And then the one-on-one clients have access to that too if they want that extra support.
Brooklyn is a positive person and knows that sometimes life gets in the way and teachers are busy. Self care is on the back burner. It's really hard with health and fitness because people will get busy or can feel overwhelmed and kind of just check out. It becomes easier to just not check in with her. So when that happens, she tries really hard to just let them know that she gets it. She understands that people are busy. Sometimes they just need to work together and lower the number of days they work out. Or if they’re tracking macros right now and that's too much, they’ll take a step back and track just protein and calories or maybe not track anything. She just tried to make it work for them so that they feel like they can still do this. Even if it's not as structured as before. Brooklyn feels that's where people kind of check out when they feel like it's too much.
I know that I've joined group coaching programs and I checked out and was never checked on. And I remember feeling like I thought that this person was going to help me and guide me. And I know that they got busy and I got busy, but at the same time, I didn't get the coach I was promised. Brooklyn’s approach to making it better or more realistic to what you can actually do makes me very happy. And knowing that she understands the workload of a teacher is super important too because teachers are overworked and underpaid. And even though their personal health should probably come first, oftentimes it comes last.
Brooklyn feels like when you go get your hair done and she's your therapist too. That's exactly how she feels about her business too. In the one-on-one zoom calls, they're telling her it's not even about their fitness. It's about teaching or their coworkers or whatever. Because once a teacher always a teacher. Brooklyn’s program meets teachers in the middle. Somewhere between their health and fitness and their real life.
Brooklyn says to find a program or a certification or a course or something that relates to what you want to do so that you can go all-in with it. Once she actually hired a business coach and took that route or made that leap, that's when everything changed for her. That's when she was really able to see the most growth in a short amount of time. She says focus on what you want. Brooklyn hired a fitness coach who was also a business coach. She wasn't into teaching, but she taught Brooklyn a lot about things like the backend of her foundation that had holes. Her coach helped her set up everything for success and streamlined everything. Find a certification, find a course, find something that has really good reviews, someone that you can trust, and really go all in because it's so worth it.
If I would have found the right path quicker, it would have been crazy what could have been accomplished in a year's time rather than five years' time. So Brooklyn found a coach, which is super important because a lot of people ask where do we go to find these people? She recalls having different experiences in her search for a coach. Good and bad. She was not afraid to invest in herself or my business, obviously, because it's super important to her. It allows her to stay home and work from home, which is awesome. The first business coach she hired was someone that she’d actually followed on Instagram for years. She believes in finding someone that you vibe with. And that has good testimonials too.
I also think that lately, some of the coaches that are doing individual coaching, have high ticket prices that are insane. When we talk about high ticket prices, the cost of hiring someone is almost out of this world. I have invested both big and small and I wanted Brooklyn’s opinion. Brooklyn says it really just depends on who you're working with. And make sure you really mesh with that person, if it's one-on-one it is really important that you are their ideal client. For Brooklyn, it was really important that her coach was a former fitness coach. Not just a business coach who helped anyone, but instead her coach actually built a fitness business before she turned into business coaching.
That’s the beauty of the CEO Teacher® program. I sold things on TPT and created a YouTube following, plus I am a former teacher, so I understand how it all works together. Brooklyn says investing big or small really just depends on the person. She also believes that once you invest a little bit, you kind of become addicted to investing more in getting that feedback and personalized coaching and seeing how much it pays off. It's well worth it. Learning to trust yourself if you want to make it work. Winging it just isn’t enough in this day in age. As soon as Brooklyn took the leap and invested in herself she was able to get that return on her investment, which was super important.
I think more than anything, it's the validation that you're on the right track. Once you feel confident in yourself and understand you’ve got what it takes to kind of push the threshold of what the next level of what success means to you. Brooklyn was able to create a great tiered system after investing in a coach to show her the way. It's a real business model. She does one-on-one coaching and some group coaching, and what she has done is create a true business model.
In the past Brooklyn was doing way too much for each of the offers. They were kind of meshing together, there were no clear lines between the offers. So people didn't really know the point of 1:1 versus group coaching. So getting really crystal clear on those offers was something that Brooklyn feels was the foundation of how her business grew. Now she basically has a tiered system. She had a membership in the past that was her lowest ticket offer, but she’s currently working on revamping that. It provides the least amount of support but is perfect for that person who just wants monthly workouts and they don't want a coach. They don't want a group environment. They just want an app and they want monthly workouts to follow.
And then the next step up from that is her group coaching. Think of that as mid-level support. They get a lot of community support but it's not one-on-one coaching. They're not custom workouts for that person. Just more of a general group program. And then above that, she has one-on-one, which is the most intensive program that she offers. At this level, you get the highest support, and access to Brooklyn. Individualized plans for workouts and food plans, a therapy of sorts with Voxer access. Plus they also get access to the group community.
Brooklyn quickly found out that juggling mom and business time wasn't gonna work. Originally she worked during nap time and really utilized that as her work time for the day. Her little one usually took one nap a day and it's two to three hours if she’s lucky. So that's when she scheduled Zoom calls, et cetera. She still works at night and gets up in the morning before she does. But before, when she was still teaching her health was still a priority, it was just different. She didn't have kids, so she could go work out after work. She could go work out in the morning if she wanted to. It was still hard to fit it all in because she was getting her Master's degree in personal training.
Now she does go to the gym pretty much every day during the week. And her little one stays in the gym daycare. That's when she is able to work on herself and get that gym time. She is not able to rely on her husband to be home because his schedule is so all over the place. So for work stuff, she pretty much fits it all into nap time. And at night.
The simplest answer that I can give these days is that we just don't know how we are doing it all with 5. Every day we take a day-by-day, hour-by-hour attitude. But Brooklyn made that seem so effortless. She works during nap time. And she has a daycare at her gym. She’s got a great schedule and it's different from mine, but it really could work for a lot of people. Just the idea that you can manage a business without taking on the burden of having to put all the kids in daycare. Or think you’ve got to work on this job 40 hours a week.
Brooklyn says for her business, it definitely goes in seasons. Obviously, when she's launching some self care for teachers program it's a lot more. She just moved across the country and had a disaster of a time. Living in hotels and all of that stress, she was not working near as much. Because she had already built up her business enough that she was just sustaining one-on-one clients during the chaos. She was still showing up for her current students but wasn't getting new clients. The success wasn't overnight. It was all the years that she was working a lot of hours behind the scenes that now she is able to work with the season that she’s in.
I know teachers right now are in a really thick season, a heavy season. We're hearing it in our communities. I know Brooklyn is hearing it from her students as well. Teachers are overwhelmed. And the last thing that they want to think about is building their business, which is my job. Or getting in shape and getting healthy, which is Brooklyn’s job. So for the teacher who knows they need to make a change. Either in business or health. Brooklyn says, “Start small!” A lot of times we try to do everything at once when we have decided we're going to start and new adventure. Whether it’s working out or starting your business. We think we need to work out five days a week and we're going to start tracking macros and we're going to track every single thing we eat and we're going to get 10,000 steps a day, 7 days per week. In business, we think we are going to be creating resources, marketing on TPT, blogging, going viral on social media, etc.
All of the things. It's so much, especially on top of everything else that you're dealing with as an educator. So Brooklyn just recommends to her clients, scale things back and be proud of the changes that you're making.
Most of the time you’ve already made big changes. Whether that's just being more active. Maybe you’re getting 5,000 steps a day now, whereas before you were getting three thousand. Or maybe you are drinking more water and before they were barely drinking three ounces a day. Maybe you were thinking of creating resources, but now you’ve taken action and started learning how to create those resources the right way. Maybe you are showing up on social media consistently to share your voice rather than consume content.
There are so many wins that we have to focus on instead of just going all out. So starting small when you begin the journey to self care for teachers and stacking those habits is what's really going to help you be successful. Then instead of thinking that you have to do everything today, it can happen over time. And once you make those habits, it's a lot easier to stick to a plan. It's really important to find something you like doing and build that over time. That way you can be consistent with it, sometimes it's important to scale it back and slow down.
That is the season I am in, I want to do all the things. I'm wearing two trackers and I have to walk 10,000 steps. I need to go to the gym five days a week, but I also had meal prep this week. Then I tried to track macros and I actually hired a macro coach. I'm not proud of it because I feel as if I failed miserably because I was overwhelmed. It was so much for me, math is not my thing. And macros involve you having to really understand math. Once I stopped trying to be so exact and perfect with it and just started to really try to understand the basics of everything. Everything started to make a lot more sense and I could build a lot better habits. Instead of saying, I'm working out five days a week, then if I only did three I felt guilty. Now I say I'm going to shoot for three days. If I get more than that, then I'm going to be excited about it. So I love what Brooklyn said. You gotta start small because that is the most important thing in building habits that will last a lifetime.
Prove to yourself that you can do it. When you start all these new habits, you really have to prove to yourself that you are going to follow through. This is why it's even more important that they are sustainable and realistic. It's okay if they're a little challenging, but make it something that you can actually do. Setting a step goal for 15,000 a day when right now you're getting 2000, is just not sustainable. And you're just going to feel worse, which isn't going to help. To create realistic goals and stick to them to succeed. ,
Still looking for a way to create habits that promote better self care for teachers: