Making a living from teaching meditation
- Can meditation teachers make money at all?
This is the question I got asked quite often. I guess it is because there are teachers who offer free classes, and there are teachers who only ask for some donation ( in New Zealand, we call it koha), and there are teachers who charge money. The interesting thing is that, there are always clients/ students showing up to all these teachers. So, the question is "what type of teachers you want to become? Do you actually want to make a living from teaching meditation?"
A little back story about me, when I was in my spiritual path with Guru Sri Chinmoy, we never charge money for any of the classes and public events. Now that I have left the path couples of years ago, I believe they still offer free services. And most of the classes and events even offer food and hot chai to people. I never had chance to meet Guru Sri Chinmoy in person as he left the physical world many years before I joined the path in 2014. I did hear all of his disciples say that Guru doesn't want to charge people to learn to meditate. He believed it was human birth right to find inner peace that is already existing inside ourselves. I took that belief as my own for years and I didn't feel right to ask for money to do the teaching, and all the preparation and the cost that coming with the teaching. Now I think it doesn't make any sense at all but back then I was hardcore in the belief regardless of also being resented. I didn't realize that my relationship with money and wealth was not healthy at all.
Only after I left the path, I started to learn a lot more about how to truly be kind to myself, and also to improve my relationship with money. I have realised that there is nothing wrong with charging money for the service that we offer, even it is to do with spiritual practices. In fact, part of my spiritual practices nowadays is the practice of honoring and welcoming money to my life. It is true that net worth isn't equal self worth. It is more to do with the fact that we limit ourself by not allowing wealth and abundance to flow in our lives.
Coming back to our main topic on making a living from teaching meditation, it is exciting that meditation has become more mainstream than says 7 to 10 years ago. We all know the great benefits of meditation, and to help beginners to get to those benefits, it requires so much encouragement and effort. Similar to yoga teachers, meditation teachers teach from their experience. And it could be years of practicing and living the lifestyle, also all the hours learning how to deliver what they know to their clients/students. We can easily tell if a meditation teacher is legit or not. So if you are confident and believe in yourself, you can definitely make a living from teaching meditation.
How much should you charge? It depends on how you offer your services. I have 4 types of service listed here as example:
- Teaching regular classes, maybe everyday or few days per week or one day per week. In this type, you could earn more when there are more students per class. You can charge by them membership fee, or drop in fee. Work out the cost of your venue and any other cost, do some math to find the reasonable number, and to make sure you have enough students to be able to make profit. In New Zealand, the reasonable fee per class here is around $10-25 per person for 1-2 hours class. It is about $5-15 per person for online zoom class. And you can also teach classes for schools, companies, organizations with a fixed fee negotiating with them.
- Teaching workshops, retreats. This takes a lot more time and cost to organize. It could be couples of hours or couples of days workshops or retreats. Money you can earn from this type vary depending on the size of the event and the audience. If somebody else runs the event, you can let them know your hourly rate and work out the amount in which both are happy with.
- Coaching one on one. This is the type in which you will charge by your hourly rate, usually from $50 to $200 and even more depending on your experience and also the budget of your client. There are many CEOs, business owners, and high achievers always look for suitable meditation coach to help them with their home practices. As these people are always seeking to improve or better their performances, and release stress, ...
- Creating and selling your own online courses. This one need a lot of work and helps from others for example video editor, graphic designer, copywriter, marketer, IT engineer,... You can do all by yourself if you have the knowledge to save the cost although bare in mind that it will take time to build the courses and time to gain traffic and have students buying the courses. Depending on the length and materials your courses offer, the price vary from $50 to $1000 or even more.
I have to say I love all of these different types of services. As a meditation teacher, I want to help my clients to be able to practice consistently and make meditation part of their life. Hence, I always love to stretch myself and adapt all different types to reach and help more people. The beginning of the journey is not easy, especially when you start out from scratch. There will be classes that no one might show up. But overtimes, we will get there. The important thing I want to remind you and myself again is that we can allow abundance, money and wealth to flow into our lives. So, I hope you can make a living from teaching meditation!