It’s funny, but until very recently I haven’t felt 100% comfortable calling myself a yogi. I’ve always enjoyed yoga but it was definitely more of casual thing for me than it is now. After almost five months of yoga teacher training I feel like I am really starting to grasp a lot more knowledge and that really empowers me to graduate myself to yogi status.
Being a yogi to me is not about how well I can do a headstand(not very well) or a hand stand(only against a wall!) but more about how it makes me feel when I show up to the mat and at least try. The simple act of attending classes, workshops and trainings gives me the knowledge I’ve been thirsting for as well as the courage I need to learn and grow even more.
I still remember one of my earlier experiences with yoga. After purchasing a groupon deal I arrived at the studio to find that half of the city also purchased the same deal and decided to attend the same class! The room was ridiculously crowded and I remember being pretty grossed out when the dude next to me was sweating on my mat! Everything seemed too hard or out of reach for me physically. Then when the teacher demo’d some of her amazing arm balances and crazy body contortions I felt a weird combination of alienation and inspiration. While I knew I was nowhere close to looking like that, I also knew that I wanted to be strong. I wanted to be able to do that, too.
Since then, I’ve found a couple other studios that were more my speed. The teachers are more down to earth and the classes feel more inclusive. After a while I heard about a training that was beginning in September 2013 and I felt in my gut that I should sign up. To really delve deeper into my knowledge of yoga and to study the physical and mental aspects were important to me. Being a part of a community of like-minded people was a huge motivation as well. By signing up for the teacher training I felt like I was showing a commitment to an interest that I would like to steer my life toward.
Some days I think into the future and try to imagine what will be crossing through my mind as an old woman who is approaching the end of life. What will I think most fondly of when I look back on my lifetime and how much of my life will those experiences account for? Then, upon returning to my current circumstances, how much of my current life is spent doing the things that I love and care about? What percentage of my life is spent dedicated to something for which I feel passionate, connected and ON?
Becoming a yogi has led me to ask myself these types of questions and, just as importantly, has provided me with the tools I need to answer them. My search will never be over but the awareness of the search has brought me immeasurable joy. I can hardly wait to see where it takes me and happier than ever to stop and take a deep breath and just be grateful.