by Guest Blogger Kate Barry
Butterflies… Nerves… Excitement… a tiny bit of genuine fear… all the goings on inside the body and mind of an almost teacher trainee yogi! Leaving my reliable 9 – 5 day job today knowing I won’t be seeing the office for almost a month is both exciting and nerve wracking. I am super excited that for the next 23 days I’ll be heading off to Yoga Dublin every day to immerse myself in yoga both physically and mentally. I’m looking forward to learning so much more about asana and movement, meditation, the breath, the history of yoga, how our muscular and skeletal systems work…. And no doubt I’ll learn more about myself along the way!
But I’m also quite nervous. It’s a big deal to use almost a full year’s annual leave and every penny in the bank to train to be a Yoga teacher. What if I can’t hack it, what if my dodgy back gives me issues, what if I’m not as advanced as others in the course, what if I don’t understand everything, what if my fear of public speaking holds me back from actually using everything I learn?
“But you’re great at yoga” is what most people say when I tell them I’m a little nervous. I know they really mean “I’ve seen the odd photo and your poses looked good”, which is what people generally think of yoga - postures, stretching and bending. And it is that of course, but so much more too.
Firstly, in the past few months I’ve had disc issues in my back which mean I can’t really do deep backbends or some side bends, so solely relying on looking good in a pose isn’t gonna cut it right now because there are some that I simply can’t even try! But for the 4 months when I was advised not to practice because of my injury, I learned that yoga is way more than the physical stuff. Gone were the 6am starts bouncing out of bed to go to Yoga Dublin in Ranelagh for a class before work, and instead I had to focus on other aspects like meditation, and breathing, taking the focus off the asana and still keeping yoga in my life even when I couldn’t immerse myself in a beautiful Ashtanga class or an invigorating flow.
And more importantly, it’s not even the physical element that I’m mostly apprehensive about … it’s that niggle of doubt, wondering if I’ll be brave enough to stand in front of a class of people and try to give them a class that leaves them feeling some semblance of the “yoga high” that I feel when I leave a class. “A class full of people” the devil on my shoulder laughs … “What if no one even shows up to your class?” – another doubt I push away before it gets in!
But I’ve decided that I’m not letting the doubts and fears make their way into my mind too much right now. Yoga means too much to me to allow that to happen. It has helped me through some rough times and I’ve had some beautiful moments through yoga – not just on amazing retreats in the likes of Morocco and Ibiza, but beautiful moments on the mat on a dark and wet day in Dublin when things in life are tough but I’ve been laying in Savasana at the end of a class just feeling that bit closer to where and who I want to be in life… and I’m not ashamed to say there’s been more than a few tears shed on that mat!
So for now I’m going to forget the what if’s and throw myself into learning more, about the practice of yoga and about myself … I’ll keep you up to date on my journey along the way!
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About the Author
Kate has been practicing yoga since 2013. With a grateful love and appreciation for life and the world we live in she has a passion for yoga, both on and off the mat.