Wednesday, May 5, 2010

the more things change

In an attempt to satisfy my curiosity. I re-read my old entries. Long before I settled into a regular yoga practice, I had to acknowledge how my life moves in cycles. Everyone's lives do, in some way, but it started to feel crazy how I'd find myself in similar situations over and over again. I began to wonder if things happened for a reason, perhaps so I could finally learn something from all the messy predicaments in which I'd find myself. It took me a while, but I started learning. I began to accept the places where I could change things and the places where I couldn't. I can't always control what happens, but I can control my reactions and actions.

Now, to clarify: I'm not the type who buys into all the manifestation/The Secret-type BS. I can accept that karma exists, and sometimes we have to lie in the beds we've made. I am, however, the type of person who believes one should learn from one's successes and mistakes.

So here I am reading through old entries of my progress and experiences as I learn how to teach yoga, and I notice that I'm still experiencing a lot of the same things when I teach now as I did when I started teaching and started writing about it. What's different, though, is me.

Once upon a time I honestly felt it was my job to get people to change through their yoga practice. I also felt that my students had to leave my class happy, or at least in a better mood than when they started. None of this is true, or needs to be true for me to be a competent teacher. Because really, I'm not a teacher. I'm more of a facilitator.

When we're born we're given all the physical and mental tools we need to live. As we grow, shit happens to us and around us that messes up our access to these tools. (For some of us it was a LOT of shit happening. For others, not as much.) If we can give ourselves the space to really look at where we are in the present moment, we might realize that we already have everything we need. We just let ourselves get cluttered and distracted. If it were easy to clear those distractions, I'd imagine everyone would be a bit more content and we'd all be living happier, healthier, safer lives.

This is where I make my entrance.

You walk into my studio and you'll have an opportunity to stare yourself in the face, both literally and figuratively, for ninety minutes at a time. It might sound like I'm forcing you to do some intense stuff with your body, but really all I'm asking is that you turn your brain off, breathe, and take a look at what you've got. Some days that means seeing something awesome you didn't know you had. Other days it means acknowledging that you're in the shit and you might want to reconsider where you are. Either way, all I have to do is ask you to be honest and really look at yourself. And sometimes this means you leave a class with me and you are not happy.

If you're lucky, though, your body feels good enough to make you consider ignoring your cranky and unhappy brain, and you come back.

No matter what the end result of one practice, I'll be back if you want to try again. Whether you like me or not.

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