51 – Leading from the Body with Sydney Craig

51 – Leading from the Body with Sydney Craig

Sydney Craig is the owner of Pilates Tonic, a studio she founded over 17 years ago, which has expanded into online movement learning. In this episode, Sydney emphasizes the importance of body as instrument – for moving through the world and finding guidance – inviting curiosity about what our body is communicating. The initial challenges she faced as a business owner revealed that her external struggles reflected internal struggles, and she shares how taking self-responsibility allowed for significant change. They discuss the importance of leading from and listening to our bodies, steadiness and showing up over time, and the presence that takes vs. the instant success narrative created by a fast-paced world.

Listen in as they discuss:

  • [00:02:48] The unique ways Sydney brings herself, her skills and her leadership to movement in the World.

  • [00:03:08] The importance of using the body as an instrument for both moving through the World, but also for guidance.

  • [00:04:03] The common perception of exercise as a means to shape the body and how Sydney emphasizes developing a relationship with the body to listen to its messages.

  • [00:05:30] Sydney compares inner work to body work – how when doing our inner work, we can have blind spots in how we are looking at things – and how it is the same way when it comes to our bodies.

  • [00:07:18] The ways our bodies can be giving us information and cues about what it needs.

  • [00:08:50]Ways we can discover body blind spots for ourselves if we are not working with a practitioner.

  • [00:10:30] Chela’s personal experience of being absorbed in work at her desk and how it affects her body, appreciating Sydney’s reminder to move and bring attention to sensations.

  • [00:12:18] How ignoring the body’s signals can lead to more severe issues, emphasizing the importance of responding to the initial taps on the shoulder.

  • [00:13:15] The way we protect ourselves from physical pain and injuries to how we can sometimes create emotional and mental patterns of protection and compensation too when something difficult happens, leading to deeper stress and challenges.

  • [00:15:29] Some of the core ways in which being a business owner and a leader has shaped and evolved her over time for Sydney.

  • [00:17:11] The importance of taking self-responsibility for one’s experiences and the power to make shifts and create change.

  • [00:19:55] The importance of being okay with oneself and how it can make it easier to change external factors.

  • [00:20:31] The balance between the actual need to work for survival and the belief that one must prove themselves or be further along in their journey – and how it can be tricky to differentiate between the two.

  • [00:23:19] The importance of paying attention to external influences and what one consumes. Sydney emphasizes the significance of meditation and breathwork in her daily routine, as well as practicing questioning her thoughts and beliefs when she feels bad, aiming to shift her focus and experience.

  • [00:26:50] Sydney explains that feeling better individually enables her to show up better for her team and the studio, allowing her to navigate challenges with more ease.

  • [00:27:45] How the pandemic accelerated the release of online offerings that she had been working on before it hit, and how it pushed her to prioritize the online aspect of her business.

  • [00:30:06] Sydney shares more about her online offerings, including her blog as well as an online membership.

  • [00:32:11] The collective restlessness created by the fast-paced world and constant influx of information.

  • [00:34:32] Sydney shares her experience of growing, scaling, and managing her business as a practitioner-turned-entrepreneur.

  • [00:37:46] Sydney shares her current leadership edge, which involves showing up in a bigger way and owning her gifts. She discusses the process of embodying and confidently sharing what she has to offer.

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More from Sydney

Sydney is offering four different Introspective Body workshops online in 2023:

Your Core & Pelvic Floor

Your Glutes & Pelvic Floor

Your Back & Breath

Stable Spine

For more dates and details, visit the Pilates Tonic Blog.

About Sydney

Sydney Craig is a Restorative Movement Specialist and founder of Pilates Tonic and Pilates Tonic Online. She specializes in helping people harness the power of their body’s natural intelligence through alignment, so they feel stronger, more flexible, and freer in their body—no matter how old they are.

Find Sydney Here

I’m an Integral Master Coach™, Master Certified Coach, writer, mother & people lover. My gifts are centered around helping others to meet their calling and unleash their genius, on behalf of our shared world. Get to know me...