What is your yoga teacher thinking? Not only do we want you to understand the message we are trying to convey, we would love to see you better understand your self. As a growing community, yoga teachers are entering a crucial period where we are under pressure to perform for the masses, yet stay true to our individuality. I will unabashedly confess where we stand.
#1. “We teach for our self.” This may sound selfish, but giving and receiving are just like breathing. We strive to give love; it gives us a meaning. YOU, our students, help us grow. Even when you feel as though you came to our class and walked away with some profound self-realization and you’re forever in our debt, we promise, you taught us more! We exchange energy with you and it’s really beautiful.
#2. “We really do see the best in everything (and everyone).” It’s about time we start to recognize the science inside our brains. Gratitude creates serotonin and dopamine, which are two chemicals in your brain that help regulate mood and emotion. These help create happiness. Most of us “yogis” call it the law of attraction! There is actual factual data that proves having an attitude of gratitude will create success, abundance and even affluence in your life and the lives of those around you.
#3. “Just like you, we face fears and struggles.” However, we are quick to see that these fears and struggles are illusions and the greater mission is to not allow pushback and resistance to and from these fears. We practice yoga so we can create these deep inner struggles, blocks, challenges and tensions on our mat, so that when we step off of our mats, we can see and appreciate the easy, steady flow that life naturally allows. I have seen people having huge life struggles walk onto their mat, master an arm balance that they swore they couldn’t do, and then step off their mat and make drastic strides toward figuring out where life is shifting them. Yoga shows us that the impossible is actually highly possible when we believe.
#4. “We spent entirely too long creating a playlist.” When framing a class, creating a soundtrack seems so crucial as it is created to help you tune out and focus on your own breath work. The right speed and tone for the transitions of each part of the class can be a pure art form. It brings much joy and a sense of completion when a playlist is mastered in length and form. We love when you love our music. Music speaks to some on a soul level.
#5. “We believe in you.” When we say, “next time you will get it”, it’s because we know you have the ability, but there is some resistance that YOU have created that hinders you. Students can be their own worst enemy, holding back with self-imposed limitations. However, us teachers know that with PRACTICE, you will get there! Yoga is a path, not a destination
#6. “We have to be extreme in the way we approach our spirituality.” This is very connected to us putting our physical practice on hold while we study you and yours. Yoga is a uniting of one’s self, a connection of spirit to body. When we give up our personal physical practice, we generally feel the need to balance this shift out by connecting deeper spiritually. What a great trade-off. This is a great perk of the job. We start to delve in for the journey to our true selves, and we can and will find her/him! We are destined to be wholesome and truthful. It’s beautiful to watch it unfold.
#7. “We’re never judging your practice.” I mean never! We know how, individual and unique each body is. We know your needs are different than the one practicing next to you and the one who was there before you and whomever steps foot into the studio after you. Our only concern is the health and safety of your body. We will coach you, but you need to feel the postures for yourself. Relax! You look great and you’re doing yoga! You made it to class! We’re so proud of you already. You have no idea that with consistency and an open-mind, you will soon be teaching us! (See confession #1.)