One month on

calendar_icon2It’s nearly a month since teacher training ended. Coincidentally (we aren’t so needy that we scheduled a one-month anniversary party!) I ended up socialising recently with most of the other graduates. It was interesting hearing snippets of what everyone is up to with their yoga. Of course the emphasis was on where they were with teaching. A couple have taught a class already, paid or unpaid, to the public or to circles of friends. A few more have imminent plans with a similar range of formality in arrangements.

The way people make these arrangements speaks volumes about the personalities involved. For some there’s a clear sense of making an offering of what they can to people who need it, for others it’s just a practice routine to hone their skills, and for one or two it’s about making some money. Interesting to observe how what we were taught, the nuts and bolts as well as the philosophy and ethics, are played out in our individual trajectories.

I’m still feeling as though I threw a lot of things up in the air during TT and I’m waiting to see where they land. I feel scattered. Divided almost. TT was such an intense experience of a different way of being, a different way of learning, and with a set of people vastly different to my usual social circle, I’m not surprised by these feelings of being a little at sea. Plus I’m balancing this against stepping straight back into my professional role and all the usual mundanities of existence that were put on hold during training. Feeling off-balance? How could I not!

And of course my yoga practice, once my stabilising place of security, is now changed too. It might look the same (I don’t know) but it all feels different. It seems infinitely full of potential. This is mind-bogglingly exciting! But it also feels so unbounded that I am struggling to start from where I am and not ricochet around madly, following a hundred and eight different aspects of interest.

clock running backwardsAnd of course my expectations of the time I have for yoga — or want/need for yoga — have changed too! Full days of yoga, 8 to 10 hours at the studio and then homework, were the luxury of TT. Now I’m trying to carve out more modest slices of time that are sustainable back in the real world.

It feels quite frustrating: how to balance ideas of limitless potential with finite time and energy?

But TT also taught me that if I could shift slightly, in either my perspective or in the actual practicalities of my days, everything would look different.

And also that patience and faith in the longer process is as important as the excitement of instant progress.

So I’ll stop writing and roll out the mat instead. I have my practice to do after a rest-day yesterday, there is a teaching sequence I’m working on that isn’t quite flowing right, there’s my Sanskrit homework (personal pronouns to cram into my brain), and then I’m off to London to take a yoga class away from home….

Just as well Hubby is occupied at work today and won’t miss me! I just need to make it back in time to prepare dinner…



4 thoughts on “One month on

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  1. It is interesting how new teachers value “paid” versus “unpaid” gigs. My advice would be to take a year and find your practice while informally teaching a free/donation class on the side and subbing when you can. There is nothing more fun and exiting to find a space in which to do this. Fourteen or so years ago, I “adopted” a class in a church courtyard from a woman for whom I would sub. That class has evolved into me getting my own room and having the same students for that length of time. To have 7 or so students who have studied with you for 10 or more years is a powerful thing. That all started from a free/donation class and still is to this day. After all of my years of teaching, I am lucky to bring home 300 USD from all of it. My full time job allows me do support my yoga teaching without me having to bend the practice to commercial forces. Every class I teach, I look forward to with great joy. After 14 years this hasn’t changed.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Such good thoughts, Michael, thank you. Are the good teachers always so humble? 🙂

      I guess paid allows newbies to feel validated. I’m worth paying? For myself, I feel I need to give, before I can take… But I’m also aware that this might just be fear talking in disguise! Anyhow I have some work-friends coming over next week for some practice teaching and feel truly grateful for them giving up their time. I hope it can be a mutually rewarding experience! Plus I have a (paid!) subbing class coming up too.

      Yoga goes on, I’m just following along…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Perhaps, as in all things, it’s about finding a balance? I did volunteer teaching for exclusively for several years before I took my first YTT. Then I sort of fell into subbing for an ashtanga friend at the Community Centre, then took the class over when he didn’t want to come back. I now have 2 classes that I’m paid for at the Community Centre, and one volunteer gig at the prison. I love my CC classes: there is a core of participants that return year after year – a sangha! And the money helps me to support my yoga habit (books, other resources, intensives).
    I feel very, very happy. Very, very blessed to have these opportunities to live and share this practice.

    Liked by 2 people

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