I’ve embarked on an 8-week Yoga Teacher Training course. Yes, embarked, as in it will be a great voyage.
I hope to share my experiences with you as I travel this new and fascinating path. It’s a bit uncomfortable for me, as I usually prefer writing about my experiences after the fact. After I’ve got it all figured out and compartmentalized and ready to share.
In the spirit of stepping into the unknown, into the possible, and into the wonderful space of learning and practicing what I preach, I’m sharing a few of my thoughts and experiences from my first week of training while I’m still in the first week of training.
It’s a fairly large group of yogis (about 20 or so) participating in this training. On our first day we were asked to share our story. Why we were there, what brought us to yoga.
I’ve had my own experience with the healing powers of yoga and have read about how it can cure everything from heartache to backache, but I’ve never heard a real person, sitting a few feet away from me, express how yoga had kept them alive or healed their body or become their “religion.”
Everyone had a different story. Some had been practicing for years, others not so long. As everyone told their story, we all felt there was something we could relate to in it. It was all human and all heart, and that is one strong common thread.
Listening to the stories reinforced to me the power of listening and the power of being heard.
Has anyone ever asked you for your story?
The How did you become who you are story. The Where do you want to go story.
The one where you spill your guts and free your mind.
Have you ever asked someone for their story?
While holding on to our stories can trap us, releasing our stories can free us. Releasing takes many forms, but I believe a healing component is to feel heard and to feel seen.
We cannot always fix someone’s problem or make them feel better, but we can listen to them and we can see them, as we would love to be seen and heard. When we do, we honor both the human and the being in them, and we tap into both aspects in ourselves as well.
We all learn basic alignment from our yoga classes. The longer we practice, the more we start to think we’ve got it down pretty good. We know our yoga, we know our body.
The detail I’ve learned in just a few days has already improved my practice. Concepts that I thought I had a good grasp on before are being broken down in all their intricacies, allowing me to see their many parts in sharp relief.
They say the best way to learn something is to teach it to someone else. I guess that’s the process I’m going through here. Learning how to put what I feel in my body into words serves to highlight subtleties and nuances I had overlooked before.
Now that I’ve started this journey, I can’t believe I ever contemplated not starting this journey. It’s that amazing, informative, mind-blowing, and completely worthwhile.
It’s an intense but invigorating process. As we dive deeper into all aspects of yoga, external and internal, I expect to face my own mental walls, tight spots, stubborn areas, and fears. I hope to experience a breaking down of old patterns and a breaking through to what awaits me on the other side of this journey.