The following is an edited transcript of my video “5 Things Yoga Taught Me About Trademarks“.
Lately, I’ve been trying to get back into a routine of practicing yoga, at least once a week. I really enjoy practicing yoga – It’s great for your body, mind, and so many different ways. Because I’m such a trademark-focused person, I want to share five things that yoga has taught me about trademarks.
First, every day is different. Every time you practice yoga, you’re going to feel a little different. Some days you have it. Some days you don’t. Some days you got your A game, some days your C game. With trademarks, every one is different and unique. Every client is different and unique, and we have to adapt all of the time to any particular brand, trademark or client.
Another valuable lesson from yoga is that it’s a long journey of incremental improvements from day to day or week to week. Sometimes you don’t realize until you step back the tremendous changes and improvements over time. So the incremental adds up over a long period. This applies to trademarks as well. Taking the steps to protect your brand—to use it properly, to monitor and enforce it, sometimes they’re just one small step of improvement in terms of the protection from where you were before. Over time, all of these things add up to tremendous protection for your brand.
The third valuable lesson is to be present and bring intention to what you are doing. You’ll hear this a lot in yoga class, and that’s part of why I love it, because it allows you to focus on what you’re doing right there and to forget about everything else while you’re practicing. This is valuable for businesses as well—to bring intention and focus to their brand and to protecting, growing, and strengthening it. That’s what we work with clients all the time on doing, once they’ve committed to that.
Flexibility, of course, is useful in yoga. It’s not required, but it is useful to unlock poses, to stretch and flex your muscles. Flexibility is also very important and valuable in the trademark registration and protection process. Because trademark protection is not a sprint. It’s not a straight line. There’s always going to be obstacles and curves to deal with. So, metaphorically, flexibility is necessary when you’re working with protecting a trademark.
Finally, the fifth lesson that I’ve taken from yoga and apply to trademarks is to always be learning and growing. Yoga is always challenging me to become a better person or a more thoughtful person. And, in the world of trademarks—even after almost 25 years—I am always learning, always growing. No two days, no two weeks are the same. Everything we do helps build our knowledge base so that we can get to a new level and unlock new challenges, learning, and knowledge, including attending and speaking at conferences, focusing on ways to keep learning and keep growing.
I leave you with these five lessons from yoga that apply to the world of trademarks. And, of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t close with a namaste.