I know how to be a marketer. I’m figuring out how to be a yoga teacher, I’m figuring out how to connect a practice that feels deeply personal to the broader ways I share my life, and how to do it in a way that feels authentic without overly monetizing a thing I do for my actual income. I know there are others in the same position as I am. Yoga, a practice thousands of years old, deeply rooted in personal development and separation from the ego, has been pushed into the stark spotlight of personal promotion.
This morning in the midst of teaching a 5:45 am class I realized I have been reminding people of these things for ONE WHOLE YEAR. For 365 days actual humans have been paying actual American Dollars to learn yoga from me. Sometimes it still feels really weird that that is a thing. As you likely remember I love a good review/performance evaluation and while I do get them on the reg at the studio, nobody evaluates me like I do. Nobody. So....
But just like Piglet, many of the challenges we face are obstacles we put in our own way. What better opportunity to practice Hurdler’s pose?
Even in yoga, a place we go to slow down, we’re enchanted by muscling our way into the big, bold, Instagrammable poses. In last week’s class I wanted to focus on doing less, on just being in a space, even when it’s difficult.
Why not combine BALANCE AND A BACKBEND? That’s right, we went all in on King Dancer.
Camel pose, Ustrasana, is one of the poses that I struggle through. My body resists it and my brain really resists it. I blame some scarring Bikram experiences and near pass-outs. However, the idea of creating a firm base and offering up my heart is something I need to feel both in my practice and in my life.
Last week we worked on Bird of Paradise. This pose is all about finding your center of balance, opening your hamstrings, and lifting your heart.
I don’t like falling. I don’t like things that include the risk of me getting hurt. I tend to hold back a little to keep myself safe, maybe more than a little. Knowing this about me you can imagine discovering that crow pose, or bakasana, would become a regular part of my practice induced more than my usual amount of anxiety. This came about the same time I decided, at thirty years old, to learn how to ride a bike. All of a sudden there was the potential for a lot of falling in my life and that didn’t sit well with me.
I don’t share a lot about my physical journey, it doesn’t feel natural to do so for me. Recently more people have been asking me, so I decided to celebrate a ‘big’ success moment. I do, however, frequently share about my yoga journey. Being able to express my struggles, triumphs, moments of acceptance, and moments of growth feel more meaningful than sharing numbers on a scale or sizes printed on tags. I share because I hope that my happiness can inspire someone to start their own journey.