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Meet Heather with Yoga Tribe

Meet Heather Ritenour-Sampson with Yoga Tribe MN in downtown Rochester. She became a small business owner "because I was tired of asking permission and waiting for change." If you can identify, Heather's story below is an inspiring read.

About Yoga Tribe

Yoga Tribe is a boutique yoga studio in downtown Rochester that is creating conscious community through meditation in motion. We are a sanctuary for big hearted yogis who seek freedom and joy while on their quest to change the world with their unique gifts.

What does being a small business owner mean to you, and why did you become an entrepreneur in the first place?

Being a business owner, for me, means that I am actively committed to being of service in my community, and that the service I offer is a unique space for exploration, evolution and connection to arise. Why did I become an entrepreneur? Because I was tired of asking permission and waiting for change. I wanted to make my own rules and do it my own way.

What are the daily challenges you face as a female entrepreneur? What has been the biggest reward?

Female entrepreneurs tend to have heart-centered, service based businesses. These services aren’t often seen as a “need” or even a “want,” but more of a “luxury” that is hard to justify investing in. On the flip side, because so many of the health clubs in town offer free yoga classes, owning a yoga studio is a double-edged sword because yoga is seen as either a luxury or something you should get—or give—for free. So my challenges as a female entrepreneur have been specific to finding the confidence to stand behind the value of my unique brand and what I—and we as a studio—have to offer. The biggest daily challenge I face as a entrepreneur in general is trying to “sell” something in a super hesitant and resistant market, where quality isn’t always valued over cost. The greatest reward of being an entrepreneur is proving to myself, my partner, and my kids that I could in fact DO IT on my own terms and SUCCEED. The even bigger reward us knowing personally almost every person who is part of our community and the impact that what we offer has on their lives.

How do you balance your business and your personal life?

There’s no such thing as balance. It’s a teeter totter you just have to ride. But the center of the teeter totter is self-care and self-development, or everything falls apart.

What one thing have you learned that has served you well over the years?

Things peak and valley: don’t get too excited when they are going well or too freaked out when they aren’t. Anticipate change, stay curious, and respond to what’s actually happening with creativity and practical solutions in equal amounts.

What new projects or future plans are you looking forward to?

We will be launching a new teacher training module this summer, as well as element-based urban retreats, more personal development options, and lots more great yoga taught by the best teachers in town!

Update as of March 12, 2020: For the safety and health of downtown business employees and attendees, the Rochester Downtown Alliance is postponing Ladies’ Night Out amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) concern. We make decisions like this with the utmost care and consider local, state, and national updates. We look forward to bringing you community events you love soon.