When I decided to become a yoga teacher, I underestimated how difficult it would be to run my own yoga business. I teach a variety of group classes, private lessons, lead retreats, and teach workshops to try and earn a good enough living to help support my family, but after 5 years- I am a tad tired. That isn’t to say teaching full time can’t be done. I know of a lot people who do it and are successful, but if you ask them if it is easy, they will tell you no.
My joy of teaching is compromised with how much driving I do to get to a studio to teach a class or to a client’s home to teach a private lesson. My own yoga practice was my inspiration to become a teacher and it suffers because of how much I teach, and hours spent building my business. I’ve realized that balancing it all has been the most difficult, and what needs to change. This is not to say I want to stop teaching, because I do love it, and will continue to do it, and when I see the progress someone makes in their practice it brings me true happiness but I also know that I need to reevaluate.
A few months ago, I was co-leading a women’s retreat, and we practiced a writing exercise of asking tough questions but answering them with the first thing that came to mind. One of the questions was “Do you have any regrets in your life?” For me; I regretted not finishing college. Self-doubt is a bitch. When I dropped out of college, I told myself I wasn’t a good student or I just wasn’t smart enough. Until today.
When I went through my YTT I cried after my first training weekend and experienced the same self-doubt when I went to college. I feared I would fail, and I wasn’t good enough to be a yoga teacher. The difference between the two were that I was a bit older, and I understood that fear is an illusion that held me back from the dreams I wanted to create for myself. So, I kept going & I became a certified yoga teacher. I can say this illusion of fear is my driving factor to believe in myself more and to work a little bit harder and to finally go back to college. I follow my heart on most days which is driven by love, so why would I give up on that now?
Yoga teaches us to embrace each moment and stay present but it also teaches us to take action in our lives. I encourage all of you to do the same. If you’re feeling unsatisfied in your career or your life, ask yourself questions and reevaluate. C. Joy Bell C. says- “Don't be afraid of your fears. They're not there to scare you. They're there to let you know that something is worth it."
Tiffany (RYT 200®) is a student and teacher of yoga living in Baltimore, Maryland.
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