Five years ago, I quit my job and started teaching yoga full time. It was one of those pivotal periods in life where you leave everything you’ve known behind, some by choice, some not. I started over with the little bit of hope that I had whispering from my heart that this was possible. I had been practicing for about 2 years before I signed up for my first Yoga Teacher Training (YTT). The experience of growing closer to myself and my practice is something I will never regret. It was the final push to initiate this huge transition. If I could go to the jungle of Costa Rica by myself to study yoga, not knowing anyone in the group I was about to meet, well then… I could do anything. Today, I’m so thankful to say that my self practice, along with the mentoring and support from my teachers over the years, has built the foundation for my teaching.
The first couple of years were none the less challenging. I loved calling myself a yoga teacher but I felt like an impostor. It was a daily battle with self worth. Some days I felt so complete and whole and alive, “this is my purpose”. Other days, I felt like “who am I to teach yoga, I’m so new, my sequence sucked, that person hated it, I know nothing…repeat repeat repeat.” This cyclical thought pattern is normal when you start anything new and you feel like you should already be the best at it. It’s a rough pattern to ride out. Even though I had fear following my footsteps, I wanted to learn more, to become more confident in my studies and teachings. I taught everywhere and everything that I could. I wanted to get my feet as wet as possible. From free yoga in the park to local charity yoga events, I was nose deep in ideas of how to share yoga with the community. Just like any job, this taught me what types of yoga I resonated with and which ones weren’t for me to teach.
At first I was drawn to the vibrant playful energy of kids, so I pursued a certificate in Kids Yoga. The little ones are the future, and their little brains are so pure and impressionable. I would love for them to go through their day knowing that they have tools inside of them to face their challenges. I wish that I found this practice when I was going through school! As sweet as kids classes are, they took so much energy from me. I decided to stick to teaching adults, with an occasional kids class here and there. I do love me some kids yoga games though! To all my fellow humans who teach kids, you’re a saint angel and don’t you ever forget it!
Eventually, I was introduced to Ashtanga Yoga, something I quite honestly never saw my free flowing Vinyasa Yoga self enjoying. At the time I had been focusing a ton on flexibility and inversions. Oh my inversions, how I love them. The thing is, my self practice wasn’t well-rounded, until I met Ashtanga. I came to appreciate this practice so deeply. The lineage of Ashtanga is so strong and rooted, it has changed my own personal practice tremendously and become my outline for the way I structure my classes.
Through this lifestyle I have been presented with some of the best opportunities. I have met some of my forever friends. I have traveled and shared my teachings with retreat groups in some of the most beautiful places. Sometimes I still can’t believe this is my reality..*insert mind blown emoji here*
As I continue growing through my practice and my teaching, I’m coming to realize that a lot of things are gray rather than black or white. There are so many different ways to understand, interpret, and share our knowledge and experience. Every day I learn, reflect, and share. I honor the source, which has already been laid down before us in the history of yoga.
I love deepening my practice through trainings, workshops, online courses, classes, asana practice, reading, and self study. All of these things have helped me grow immensely. There is always more to know, and I am continuously humbled by the depth of this practice.
Yoga has helped me make some of my biggest life decisions, just like this one, to be part of a teacher training. I had once said that I wouldn’t lead a YTT because there is so much to know, so much, that I’m not sure any human being can absorb it all in this lifetime. What I do know is, that as my practice grows deeper, so does my inner trust. I see the importance of sharing what I do know after 5 years of teaching multiple times a day, at many different studios, almost every single day of the week. Beyond all of the self doubt and questioning, it would be a disservice not to share this gift of yoga with the community around me in a deeper way than my weekly classes can provide. The history, the ones who have come before us, the ancient philosophy, the power of meditation, the transformation from physical practice, it’s all so important, too important to ever be lost.
I’d like to think of myself as a story teller, sharing what already is, based on the history that’s come before us. I want to share now out of love and respect for the practice. It’s too powerful and healing to ever be watered down or dissolved. It’s important that we keep sharing this message, this practice, this light with generations to come.
I’m so excited to hold this space for you. ❤
Chris, Catherine, Amanda, and I all hold a piece of this ancient story. A piece that’s led us down our own paths, yet allowed us to connect throughout the journey. We compliment each other well, filling in where our knowledge is needed. Together we want to help you find your own self practice that’s rooted so deeply in the ancient source of yoga.
I can’t wait for you to see how bright your inner light really shines, so you can feel confident and loved in your own skin. And I hope that that light transmits from your fingertips out into the world.