Lauren Solomon

From a career in Finance to a lifetime journey as a yoga instructor + reiki practitioner aimed to transform the wellness movement by focussing on under-represented communities

A former Wall Street professional, Lauren Solomon transitioned from a decade-long career in Finance to a lifetime journey as a yoga instructor and reiki practitioner. Now, with over 300 hours in certification training, Lauren aims to transform the wellness movement by focusing specifically on under-represented communities with her brand, Lotus Sol.

As part of our 2018 AFROPUNK weekend experience, we partnered with Lauren to offer our group morning yoga sessions to stretch our bodies and center our minds before hitting the city streets and crowds of the festival.

The following post is part of a Q&A series with the artists, chefs, curators, and business owners we partnered with to celebrate the cultural force that is Brooklyn.
Tell us something about you and/or Lotus Soul we wouldn't know from reading your bio.
I am a doula in training! Ready to support and empower women in the sacred process of pregnancy and birth.
When and how did you first discover your passion for yoga and wellness?
Yoga quickly became far more than a workout...it was unearthing and healing things that I had neatly tucked far, far away.
In retrospect, I was first introduced to yoga circa 2009. My first class was off-putting as it was far too "advanced," the instructor only spoke in Sanskrit and at that time it seemed obvious to me that yoga was for skinny white women who wear $100+ spandex pants.

With that said, I discovered my passion for yoga 7 years ago. I returned to the practice seeking peace during a very challenging time in my life filled with lots of abrupt changes and sadness (relationship, finances, work etc). What I found is not something I can put into words, but it was clear that whatever "it" was, I wanted more of it. Yoga quickly became far more than a workout that created endorphins and allowed me to temporarily feel better, it was unearthing and healing things that I had neatly tucked far, far away. So I just kept showing up...and the rest is history.
What do you love most about living and working in NYC? As NYC has changed in recent years, how has that impacted your industry?
I'm a country girl at heart, born and raised in Durham, NC but I LOVE NYC! I've had the privilege to live and work in NYC for 11 years and I am convinced that the energy in this city has been a catalyst for my transformation and all that I am becoming. The best to the least of everything is all here - you can reach out and actually touch it - when your desires are within reach (a subway stop or Uber ride away) you're more readily able to manifest it because it's actually REAL to you. If what you want (no matter what it is) seems out of reach (literally or otherwise), it's nearly impossible to actualize it.

I've found in recent years that for myriad of reasons, poc are actively seeking (perhaps now more than ever) safe spaces that have been specifically and intentionally created for them (exclusively) and by them. As a result, there's been an increase in demand for healing modalities offered by black/brown practitioners. When we come together with the shared purpose of transcending oppression and suffering ...elevating our collective consciousness is a metaphysical alchemy that I am proud to contribute to, that we may remember who we are and that we need not seek outside of ourselves for anything because what we are seeking is and always has been ours.
I am convinced that the energy in this city has been a catalyst for my transformation and all that I am becoming.
Why did you decide to start your own thing? What has been the most rewarding part?
Choosing the perceived security of my salary and being unhappy/dissatisfied with my work became intolerable.
I decided to switch careers and create Lotus Sol because choosing the perceived security of my salary and being unhappy/dissatisfied with my work became intolerable. My career in Finance was what I could do and I was certainly capable of doing well, however, Finance was not what I have been called/anointed to do.

The most rewarding part is manifold: (1) knowing, without any doubt that my life's work is deeply meaningful and impactful in ways seen an unseen (2) autonomy - I am liberated from fear of lack and the constraints of the expectations of others (3) the excitement and confidence that comes with knowing that I am still becoming.
What are you most looking forward to sharing with our group during the AFROPUNK weekend experience?
I'm most looking forward to collectively tapping into that palpable and beautiful energy that AFROPUNK brings each Summer. Together we get to breathe, move and experience the power of our being in ways which are uniquely our own and unapologetically.
Learn more about Lauren and Lotus Sol on her website and connect on Instagram.

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More in this series
Brooklyn Highlights: a Q&A series with the amazing artists, writers, chefs, designers, and business owners we've partnered with to celebrate the cultural force that is Brooklyn.