CEO/Founder, Unplug Meditation, Author, "Unplug: A Simple Guide To Meditation for Busy Skeptics and Modern Soul Seekers", Creator, Unplug Meditation App
Suze Yalof Schwartz is the CEO and Founder of Unplug Meditation, the author of Unplug: A Simple Guide To Meditation for Busy Skeptics and Modern Soul Seekers, and the creator of the Unplug Meditation App.
In 2012 Suze learned a three minute meditation that turned her world upside-down and changed her life forever. Prior to this she was a fashion editor and “makeover guru” working at Vogue, Elle, Marie Claire and Glamour Magazine with regular appearances on GMA, The Today Show, CBS Early Show and more. Once she got the meditation bug she was on a mission to keep doing it but found that it was not easy to find a place to learn and pop in and out and practice. Think “Dry Bar” for meditation, walk in icky walk out great in under 30 minutes. After taking hundreds of hours of classes and courses,reading every book possible, and listening to podcasts, lectures, and more from the world’s most famous meditation teachers, Suze realized that meditation needed a makeover and she was the one to do it. Hello Unplug! Suze’s mission is to make meditation simple, powerful and interesting enough so that everyone will want to practice it and experience the benefits for themselves.
You know how people are really stressed, have anxiety and can’t sleep at night? Well I do, because I used to be one of those people. I’m on a mission to make meditation so easy and inspirational that you will actually WANT to meditate every day. I opened up , the world’s first drop-in meditation studio, so that I could I help busy people with busy lives (like myself) stress less, feel good and enjoy the present moment. We offer short, meaningful guided meditations and meet people where they are, whether it’s in-studio, or 24/7 on the , or flying around the world to teach in Fortune 500 companies.
I was stressed out on a trip in NYC and my mother-in-law (who is a therapist) taught me a 3-minute breathing and visualization technique that instantly shifted me from stressed to calm. It was so simple and powerful and I wanted more! She suggested I learn how to meditate. This was November 2012. When I Google searched for a place to learn, I realized that there was no easy way. All of the options were either a major time commitment or too expensive. I am a mother of three, so I was looking for a quick fix. Think the Drybar (a blow dry hair salon) experience – walk in feeling icky and walk out feeling great in only 30 minutes. It turned out that not only was there no place to easily learn to meditate in Los Angeles, but there wasn’t even a single drop-in studio exclusively for meditation in the world. I couldn’t believe it! I told my husband that I was going to quit my job as a fashion editor and be the first to open up a meditation studio. He suggested that I learn to meditate first. That is honestly how it all began. The idea for Unplug came to me in a flash – the look, the concept, and the mission was consuming. The more I learned about the power of meditation, the more I realized that this is what I want to do with my life. Now, I not only have a place for myself to study with the best teachers, but I am delivering meditation to the world in a much more accessible way than previously existed. People thought that I was crazy and that no one would come but today Unplug Meditation gets over 5,000 visits per month. We are amazed on a daily basis by the positive effect our classes are having on people, from cancer patients to their surgeons, writers, professional athletes, CEOs, stressed-out lawyers, mothers and even children. People travel from all over the country and world to experience Unplug. As of now, we have two physical studios in LA, a book called Unplug: A Simple Guide To Meditation For Busy Skeptics and Modern Soul Seekers that is published in 14 languages, and the Unplug: Guided Meditation app that is being used in 82 countries and was featured in iTunes’ New Apps We Love.
We’re about to create meditation pods that will be going into companies so employees can pause stress at work!
One of my favorite partnerships so far has been with FabFitFun – we branded an aromatherapy diffuser for them that went out in their Spring 2019 box to 300,000+ subscribers. We received millions of impressions on social media of people meditating with the diffuser and thanking us!
One of the worst moments happened in the very beginning when I registered the business, “Unplug Meditation”, and 6 months later it came back as “Unplug Mediation” because LegalZoom made a typo! I had to start the registration all over and waited another 6 months before it was complete.
Coming into the physical studio has always been the ultimate Unplug experience, and we strive for a 5-star experience every time. The second you walk in, it will smell good, feel good, and you’ll be greeted by smiling faces. Then you’ll go into the cozy, purple-lit room and walk out blissed out!
I motivate people by actually doing work myself. I’m not just a delegator, I’m a do-er. When I have ideas, I execute them! I’m very much a roll-up-your sleeves leader who is enthusiastic and passionate about my company. I feel fortunate because the people I hire have the same enthusiasm and passion, so I learn from them just as much as they learn from me.
You really need to love what you do – you can’t fake it in the meditation industry. You need to walk the walk, not just talk the talk, especially in the world of health and wellness.
I’m a great curator of top talent, so I’m able to find the most talented meditation teachers in the country and convince them to teach at Unplug, either in the studios or on the app. That’s been one of my greatest achievements…getting the best teachers to join the Unplug movement.
Meditation. When I don’t meditate, even for one day, I’m definitely not the best version of myself. When I do meditate, I’m much more focused, calm, patient and kind.
Personally, my aspiration is to continue having fun, loving what I do, and being present all the time with everyone around me. For my business, my aspiration is to get everyone in the world to meditate, even if it just means stopping to breathe for 16 seconds!
Pioneering an industry that didn’t exist by opening the world’s first drop-in meditation studio.
Leaving my dream life in New York and moving to Los Angeles for my husband’s job. Who knew that would be one of the best decisions of my life?
“Yes I can!”
My right hand Jalina Wallace for her focus and follow through.
And legendary meditation teacher davidji who somehow goes into massive meditation immersions every day. I don’t know how he can be leading group trainings daily and putting in that level of dedication. We do three every year at Unplug and it’s A LOT, so I really respect how davidji gives so much of himself to so many people, every single day.
Half Moon Resort in Montego Bay, Jamaica is my home away from home. At this point, I’m a Jamerican.\
My 1 gallon Qui Fit water bottle which makes me drink tons of water every day; DoTERRA essential oils; my Tibetan singing bowls; Koshi chimes from Paris; Indigo reading socks; and my Betsey Carter mug that says “FOCUS”.
Right now, I’m really into essential oils and learning all about their power. I love them so much so that I’m creating an essential oil bar at Unplug!
Drink a gallon of water.
Think before I speak.
Make time for human connection.
Create a whiteboard like my assistant did for me that says “Write only ONE thing…erase only when complete”. The idea is to have only one task or goal at a time and erase it off your list only once it’s done. I always like to do 100 things at once so this helps me focus on doing one thing at a time, which is so much more productive.
A Day in My Life:
What do you love most about Your City?
That it’s sunny and 75 degrees every day.
Favorite breakfast meal & restaurant?
SoHo House Malibu brunch on the weekends.
What are you doing at:
6:00 AM – Usually doing an online course between 5-6am.
10:00 AM – Trying to get to inbox zero.
2:00 PM – Favorite Lunch spot/meal? The turkey chopped salad from Coral Tree Café at my desk.
7:00 PM – Sit down dinner with husband and three boys.
11:00 PM – Out like a light!
What drink do you need to get through the day and at the end (and how many)?
1 gallon of infused water.
Most used App/Favorite Instagram Account?
What should everyone try at least once?
McConnell’s Turkish coffee ice cream.
Where do you enjoy getting lost?