This interview with B, Halfmoon’s Andrea McKay is part of Street Meet, FLEETSTREET’s series, where we meet up with trailblazers and thought leaders to deliver unique insight and inspiration into issues we all care about.
For Andrea McKay, balance isn’t about sitting still – although sometimes it is. It can also be about leading a profitable and growing company that encourages its customers to slow down. The MBA-clad Canadian founder of the two functionally stylish yoga props brands, B, Halfmoon, is no stranger to dealing with polar pulls in her life and work, which doesn’t just make her inspirational but also damn relatable. FLEETSTREET connected with McKay to discuss balance and what to make of it.
FS: How do you create balance knowing that it’s not “balanced” all the time?
AM: I am in a state of constant attunement to myself; pausing, checking in and taking very intentional actions. I recognize that what I need today differs from what I needed yesterday and what I’ll need tomorrow.
How do you create space for yourself physically?
Physically, I need a clean and calm home. This brings me peace.
I also have a “zen zone” outfitted with my favourite wellness tools, ranging from mats, to bolsters to blankets and eye pillows. My zen zone is my mini sanctuary and easy access to all the things that support my grounding and, in turn, wellbeing.
Now, how do you create space for yourself mentally?
Well, it’s all connected: deep rest, movement. creative pursuits, connection with loved ones, nature.
All of these incredible ingredients support my space and peace of mind.
I feel conflicted by the “you are enough” culture. What’s your perspective as an entrepreneur?
“Enoughness” culture parallels our company values and really my journey through life. The pursuit of enoughness is a journey of self-discovery, self-love and inner growth. As a leader, I want my team to feel safe, trusted and loved just as they are, so I support this movement while, of course, still maintaining pragmatic productivity and performance standards and boundaries for the business.
I’ve spoken to other professionals in the yoga industry, and finding the calm within them drove them to love yoga and pursue it as a career. But the business side of things isn’t always so. How do you take your lessons from the practice of yoga and apply that to a business and motivated mindset?
This has proven to be my number-one challenge in leading a ‘yoga business’ and has truly been conflicting over the years.
But at the end of the day, my yoga practice reminds me of the power of flowing with change, trusting my intuition and being my unique self principles that serve me in business day in and day out.
So, how has your practice changed for you?
Ten years ago, when I launched B Yoga, I was pregnant with my firstborn. My wellness practice was very yoga-centric. Today, though, it’s more complex, involving sleep rituals, strength training, hydration goals, connection with loved ones, time in nature, breathwork and meditation.
Specific to yoga, I’ve gravitated towards Hatha post-kids, which is a slower flow practice compared to the hot vinyasa of my 20s.
What inspires you to stay so active?
Very simply: my kids as well as the immediate benefits to my mental health that I feel post-movement.
How do you keep yourself challenged?
I am a growth fanatic. To grow, you need to challenge yourself. I thrive off of growth as I love to learn, to improve myself and to evolve. However, this sometimes comes at a cost as I’ll take on too much at one time and overwhelm myself. So, my life is an example of this. I thrive on the edge of change, rather than remaining within the status quo of my comfort zone.