Why I Do What I Do: Bruce Van Horn, founder, Yoga for Business
Bruce Van Horn (above, with friend) believes that sometimes you have to change your life to save your life. Once a mild-mannered accountant, Van Horn spent years working for large corporations and found that many employees equated their value as humans with their jobs. When a colleague took his life because of work-performance issues, Van Horn decided to take action and began teaching meditation and yoga to his coworkers. In 2000, he sold his successful accounting firm to devote all his time to Yoga for Business, a motivational program he developed for companies. In a series of classes, Van Horn teaches participants meditation and hatha yoga as ways to control stress. These tools, claims Van Horn, enhance wellness and performance and improve the bottom line.
Q: What would you say to people considering a life change similar to yours?
A: I would definitely recommend it, but be ready to work hard. If you can learn to live at 75 percent of your budget and save up money, then you can become free to make your own choices, be your own person, and pursue your dreams.
Q: How did your family react?
A: It’s difficult for families because everybody expects the breadwinner to continue to provide for them. There was a lot of hesitation and trepidation, and that makes it more difficult and even more imperative that you really believe in yourself because not everyone’s going to say, “Rah rah rah! Let’s sell the accounting firm!”
Q: Why is Yoga for Business as good for managers as for employees?
A: I had started doing loving-kindness meditations when I was working with my Yoga for Business clients, and I noticed that when I would focus on giving and letting go of my ego, I was a better listener, I was more efficient at coming up with solutions for problems, and I was able to double my business. When I started doing these same meditations with my employees at the accounting firm and started seeing that they had lives and interests outside of work, I found that I became a better manager as well.