18 Jun I’m back, and better than ever!
I’m back, and better than ever! Sometimes you have to take a hiatus from things to truly “check in” with your mental space. This sums up the whole of 2018/19 for me. I feel like it’s been a long departure from caring about the little things (social media, newsletters, Facebook, etc.). I felt a drastic need to pull away from my virtual presence and focus solely on community. This is where I’ve invested my time, thought, and energy for the past year or so.
In 2018, I decided to put all my effort back into that which has always brought me the highest reward: teaching yoga. I stopped taking public classes in order to investigate my own self-worth in an attempt at figuring out what I truly have to give. Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE practicing yoga within the community, but after countless years of being in the classroom I felt lacking in my teaching approach. One day, I simply decided to dedicate my time to my own inner heart-space, and to closely listen to what it needed to say. The self-discipline it took to first seek within myself, as opposed to turning elsewhere for yogic inspiration, was astonishing.
It takes courage to show up for ourselves on the mat, day after day, facing our “stuff” and investigating what we need to do to self-improve. This challenge was even harder as a teacher. Dissecting my personal takeaways about what was necessary for me to build an authentic spiritual practice, and what could be safely left behind, is a narrative best kept apart from the space of my public classes. However, what I discovered was how expressive the practice can be when a yogi refines their headspace, effectively letting go of the need to become heady about things like alignment, form, breathing, or holding poses for long periods of time. Simply allowing oneself the ability to experience things viscerally is so important, while keeping with an attitude that ANYTHING we do should serve the goal of self improvement.
Movement in all directions, any which way, makes space, and clarifies what we really want and need. For me, that movement helps to cultivate community (within ourselves and others) because it requires heart-driven leadership. The second I became absolutely clear on that offering, the easier and more natural things have become. The struggle to build classes completely dissolved. Giving from an authentic, unfiltered place has allowed me to show up wholeheartedly and happily to work day after day. Now, my teaching is in a great place: vibrant, strong, and thumping like a joyous heartbeat. I feel such an incredibly sincere sense of purpose and wellbeing within the yoga community of Los Angeles.
For those of you struggling with intention or purpose, the biggest lesson I’ve learned is to live a life that is, to the greatest extent possible, in service of the greater good. I honestly believe the more WE come together, the more our lives improve. Together truly is better; that is the heart of any strong community.