How I Got My Job As Founder & Creator Of Toronto’s MISFITSTUDIO
For our career series “How I Got My Job,” we’ll be talking to real people, working real jobs across a variety of industries. These people are pushing boundaries and have made their mark. They’ve found success on their own terms, and now we’re extracting their advice on how to carve out your own career path.
There’s no doubt that working out and exercising is important, but are you moving mindfully? Are you moving with your whole heart and soul? If you answered ‘no’ or ‘what the #$!@’, then I can’t recommend checking out MISFITSTUDIO enough. As one of Toronto’s more unique fitness studios, MISFITSTUDIO doesn’t focus on toning your ass but rather toning your character, personality, and integrity. Don’t worry, you’ll still feel all the feels!
I caught up with Amber Joliat, founder of MISFITSTUDIO and all around goddess, to inquire how she created her dream job that has become an ever-growing community of MISFITS.
What was your first job?
I am an artist.
I have only ever created. Painted, danced and taught both.
I started teaching ballet at 12 years old and have never stopped teaching.
What did you go to school for?
Painting at OCAD, I graduated from the Florence program where I lived in Italy for a year making art.
What is MISFITSTUDIO?
MISFITSTUDIO is a movement studio created to enhance your life physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Tapping into the power of transformative movement
The MISFITMETHOD blends techniques of pilates, yoga and dance,
and encourages everyBODY to untangle from within, shift perspective and FEEL on a deeper level.
By moving the physical body, we unleash the emotional body and change the vibration of our energetic body. I believe it’s essential to do the hard work to KNOW ourselves and to practice the art of being fully present in every moment of our lives, that is the gospel at MISFITSTUDIO.
What led you to create MISFITSTUDIO?
MISFITSTUDIO was created out of a desire to move with FREEDOM
I couldn’t find the thing I was looking for, so I created it!
After teaching at so many different studios, where the culture was to repeat the same thing over and over, I knew it was time to build my home.
A home where honouring the beauty and uniqueness of how movement FEELS became my motivation.
To encourage people to close their eyes and get lost in sensation rather than fixate on what they look like, to nourish the inner child and understand the power of living from a balance of strength and grace.
What lessons did you learn when creating MISFITSTUDIO?
I learn something new every day.
I think it is the only way to live.
When I opened the studio in 2010 it was just me teaching what I wanted when I wanted in a small studio.
Over the years I have grown, evolved, fallen and risen over and over and over.
And, as challenging as some of the lessons have been, I wouldn’t change a thing.
MISFITSTUDIO has made me the human I am today.
More open minded, open hearted, accepting and compassionate than ever.
To what do you attribute MISFITSTUDIO’s success?
Oooooooo this is where I get to deep bow to ALL THE HUMANS who have supported me over the years.
I call this the grand experiment.
There is a transference that occurs at the studio
It’s symbiotic, back and forth
Of love, of real talk, of energy
That is only possible with others
The magnetic pull has been strong over the years, calling in curious minds, seekers, dreamers, lovers wanting to KNOW what MISFITSTUDIO is all about.
And I am forever grateful
To the teachers, the gals behind the scenes that keep everything flowing, the choice people make to KEEP SHOWING UP!!!!
What makes MISFITSTUDIO unique from other studios in Toronto?
At MISFITSTUDIO, the most profound shift occurs when you LET IT.
We believe in the magic of movement, how it can set you on the path to healing.
By consciously removing the words fitness, exercise and workout from our vocabulary,
MISFITSTUDIO feeds intention into every element.
Remembering that we are all spiritual beings having a human experience, we offer every type of movement, from slow and melodic stretching classes to big and boisterous cardio dance parties, we encourage you to discover movement that speaks to YOUR soul.
That is when the real change occurs, when you celebrate moving your body, find the joy and expression in it, LOVE IT, look forward to it!
What are your long-term goals for MISFITSTUDIO?
There are some BIG announcements coming soon
Long term plan in effect
What are the benefits to mindful movement?
Genuinely feeling good.
Remember the last time you felt GOOD?
Yes, that is the greatest benefit.
And connection. How to connect to yourself, your heart, your breath, your like-minded brothers and sisters, connect back to what matters in life. Learning to love yourself, so you can better love each other.
The strength of knowing WHO you are, that to me is real core strength. Deep, true, real.
What advice would you give someone looking to start their own business?
Creation comes from within
Find your voice
Do what you do because you can’t imagine NOT DOING IT
And trust (in yourself and the universe)
Don’t copy other people.
MISFITSTUDIO is part of the self-care routine for so many. What does your self-care routine look like?
Each morning I cleanse, currently using cedar and sandalwood
I give thanks to my ancestors for setting me on this path, then my day begins.
This gratitude ritual has grounded me for years, no matter what is happening in my life.
MISFITSTUDIO has done so many successful pop-ups. What do you look for when opening a new pop-up?
It has been a blessing to partner up with creative Toronto business like Free Space and Stackt Market and MOCA to offer pop-ups. The spaces are sooooo beautiful and the entire experience is elevated.
What’s something about you that might surprise other people?
That I’m 5 feet tall. So many people freak out when they meet me and say ‘you have such a big personality I thought you’d be 6 feet tall!’
What does a typical day look like for you?
Oh wow, this changes ALL THE TIME
It depends on the day really, but
I do my best to begin quiet and chill at 6am (sometimes earlier).
My morning ritual, make a smoothie and head to the studio.
At the studio I teach a hand full of classes each day, meet with the teachers,
operations and management meetings daily, take a class from one of the teachers
And head home to make dinner with my husband around 8pm.
If you weren’t the founder of MISFITSTUDIO, what do you think you would be doing?
I’d love to paint, grow flowers and live a quiet and peaceful life, in Italy.
Who are some of your role models or people who inspire you?
Leaders//Voices//Forces who are inspiring positive change in the world.
Oprah, Tara Brach, Brene Brown, Adrienne Maree Brown are high on my list.
The teachers and students that show up every day at the studio regardless of what they are processing is SO INSPIRING to me.
Nature is my biggest inspiration.
Remembering that WE are nature, and that the powerful life//death//rebirth cycle is endless.
Featured Image: Raina Kirn
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