LFM #22 - Taylor on Moving with Purpose, Motivation, and Morning Light

You know when you find a friend who just has that special spark about them that makes you want to bask in their presence? Taylor is that friend. Taylor and I met because of our shared love for barre—I actually subbed for several of her classes before ever meeting her in person—and she’s such an inspirational force I’m so glad to know. 

Taylor is a health coach, barre instructor, and events coordinator—spreading love and positivity wherever she goes. 

“The first thing I do, every morning, is open the shades and let the light in,” Taylor says. “I’ve always been a morning person, and generally wake up very motivated and energized,” she says. “When I was first starting to intentionally wake up earlier, I’d have all these notes on my alarms to motivate me and remind myself of what I need to do first thing… it’s totally a habit now.” 

A thread throughout everything Taylor does during the day is music. “With almost everything I do, I have music playing. It’s in my morning routine, on my drive, while I’m working, and I love making playlists for barre class. Music is like my therapy. It motivates me and helps my work flow.” Taylor’s current favorites are folk pop and electronic chill music (“I can’t do anything that has an aggressive vibe,” she laughs)—Some of her favorites are John Mayer, Dead & Company, Jack Johnson, and Maggie Rogers. “I set a goal at the beginning of this year to see as much live music as possible in 2019,” she shares. “We have a few concerts planned for this summer already!”

Taylor wakes up early around 5:30 and spends the first hour of her morning working on her coaching business; whether it be checking in with challenges or other coaches on her team, creating content for that day, or planning out future challenge groups. “I’m an ESFJ on the Myers-Briggs scale, so I definitely function off of other people’s energy and love connecting with others… I thrive around positive, uplifting people, and I hope to be that for others as well.” After her power hour working on her business, she’ll move on to her workout. “Right now, I’m doing Transform 20 which is a 20-minute HIIT style workout, so although it’s a challenging 20 minutes, it doesn’t take me long to squeeze it into my mornings.  After my workout, I jump in the shower and get ready for the day, which is really all of 15 minutes from stepping into the shower to being ready for work,” she laughs. “I really am not a makeup person at all, and I like to be efficient.” 

Then she’ll prep her morning shake, lunch and snacks for the rest of the day before heading to work at Cunningham Children’s Home, where she manages fundraising events. “I love my job and it’s super meaningful work that I do, but event planning can be exhausting with constantly balancing so many different projects.  I find myself wanting to spend any pocket of time I have working on my own business. So, I find little pockets of time throughout the day to work on it as much as I can… waking up extra early, using my hour lunch break and often an hour in the evenings when I get home for the day. I’ve always felt I was made for more than what was expected… not climbing a corporate ladder, but instead living a meaningful life that makes me excited to wake up every morning and want to work!  Time freedom is really important to me, so I’m working hard now so I can eventually create my own schedule and be my own boss! My morning time spent working on my business is super motivating and makes me excited for what the future holds.”

She’s also found that working out in the morning has been a big shift in her life. “Moving with purpose feels so right for my body… and now that I’ve started working out in the morning, I have so much more free time in the evenings. I am less stressed and feel like I can actually just live my life and enjoy my day… it’s so freeing. I used to try and go to the gym after work in the evening and was just drained and felt like I had no time at home. I like to stick with my workout programs for consistency, but when it’s nicer outside, I love to go for a walk or run when the sun is coming up… I love being outside first thing in the morning, it’s my favorite time of the day.” While she teaches barre at 6 a.m. on Friday mornings and loves her super committed early morning students, she has loved building her coaching business. “Leading group fitness was such a dream of mine for so long, and then it just aligned perfectly. But I’ve realized there’s a definite difference in coaching versus teaching… with coaching, I’m able to support others while not actively leading the workouts and being in the same room… so it’s nice for me to have that balance of teaching class some, and then saving my energy to work out for me on other days, but still making an impact by helping others live their healthiest lives through coaching.”

Even with an early wakeup, Taylor isn’t a coffee person. “I used to be a coffee person! But I cut the coffee habit cold turkey over a year ago, because I thought, I don’t think I really need this… and I really didn’t miss it at all. I’ll have a coffee every now and then when I’m out, but it’s not a normal part of my morning anymore.” She does love the occasional hot tea, though—her favorite is a chamomile/lavender/spearmint blend, but she also loves orange spice for a more invigorating tea, as well as green chai. 

Taylor and I discussed how much we both love personality assessments as well as Zodiac sign meanings. “There is just so much power in accepting yourself, understanding who you are, and living it out. Really living it out. And while I like horoscopes, I don’t check them daily or let them alter how I feel. It’s important to have that connection… to listen and to grow into yourself. Embracing who you are and living it out is such an important part of discovering happiness and purpose in your life.”

“I am seeking knowledge, always,” Taylor says when I ask about favorite books and podcasts. “I try to read as much as I can, but I find that I don’t have much free time between coaching, teaching, and working full time. I try to find time when I can, which usually happens before bed or on the weekends.  But if I’m at work and not actively working on a detail-oriented project, I’ll listen to a podcast or listen to trainings from other coaches. For podcasts, right now I’m loving Rise with Rachel Hollis and the Rise Together one, on relationships… I’m so excited because this summer at our annual coaching training event, Summit, Rachel will be the keynote speaker! Dream come true to hear her speak live!” 

Her main morning motivation? Sharing. “I naturally share my story and I want to help other people. Fitness and health has always been a passion of mine, but I know a lot of people struggle with finding consistency and balancing a healthy lifestyle. Since actively sharing my journey and helping others reach their goals, I’ve received so much support and it’s so reassuring that I’m doing exactly what I was meant to do. The best feeling is when people reach out to me and let me know they started working out in the mornings because of something I shared, or that I am motivating them to work towards their goals, or that what I’m sharing is making an impact on their every day. You just never know what kind of impact you’re making on others by sharing your journey and living out your best life.”

You can follow Taylor on Instagram and, if you’re in central Illinois, take a barre class with her.

The first thing I do, every morning, is open the shades and let the light in... I’ve always been a morning person, and generally wake up very motivated and energized... When I was first starting to intentionally wake up earlier, I’d have all these notes on my alarms to motivate me and remind myself of what I need to do first thing… it’s totally a habit now.
— Taylor Jules Tureskis