In two weeks I will embark on the biggest adventure of my life – I will spend 5 very intense weeks in India to get a yoga teacher diploma. Let me tell you how I found my way to yoga, why am I doing it now, and do I really plan on becoming a yoga teacher.
It started out as yet another way for me to stay active and, if I’m totally honest, to satisfy my curiosity of what all the fuss was about back in the day. I have now been doing yoga on-and-off for about five years, and whatever illnesses or other commitments have stopped me from going to classes, I have always found my way back.
The first time I realised its full effect on me was when I was going through a rough time in my life. That spring everything fell apart – I had been sacked from work in a questionable manner, my health was disastrous, my then-boyfriend of two years started another relationship before ending ours, and, on top of it all, my granddad died without any prior warning signs.
As a result of all this, I was burnt-out, depressed and felt lost. I had no clue how to pick myself up and, what seemed to be the biggest problem at that time, what my next career step should be. Ironically, I wasn’t struggling to get a job – I was finding it hard to decide which job offer to accept.
What saved me that time (and many times before and after) was my urge to plan, to have a daily routine, and to keep myself occupied even when I felt like doing absolutely nothing. And so while I was “taking a break” being unemployed and putting myself back together, I committed to staying physically active among other things. I got back to running and started going to yoga classes at least a couple of times a week.
It took me a while to find my studio and my teacher, but even along the way, every time I stepped on a mat had this calming effect on me. It was just me and my body, and I was in control. And for an hour or so I could forget about everything that was happening outside of the studio walls. With time, this extended past the walls and way after the class was over. I was so hooked, I became addicted to these feelings.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying yoga saved me from my misery, but it definitely gave me the strength and mental capacity to get back on my feet, step by step.
Constant Learning and Finding My Yoga Community
I was amazed by the idea that a 60- to 90-minute long yoga class can have such a huge effect on a person. And it wasn’t just me. I was listening to other yogis being as excited as I was when we sat down for a cup of tea after classes. I felt like I belonged somewhere again. And I was in awe of the yoga teachers I met along the way – I wanted to have their skills and knowledge that would have such a positive effect on others.
Soon I was attending classes 4 to 5 times a week, and progress followed – I became more flexible and stronger than I had ever been. Being able to learn how to do a headstand was such an uplifting feeling, I remember how stoked I was when I first managed it! And how curious I was to understand how my muscles worked, and feel how I got stronger and stronger.
One of my yoga teachers at the time was opening her own yoga studio in Riga and I started taking classes there. One thing followed another, and I offered to help out with social media and marketing stuff to get the word out. In return, I could take as many classes as I wanted. It wasn’t long until my duties extended, and I became the yoga studio administrator earning a bit on the side of my day job.
First Ideas Of Teaching Yoga
I really enjoyed this time, as I felt I was needed and was doing something good for others. The yoga community kept growing and I was a part of it. The highlight of this period in my life was the chance to assist in some of the beginners’ classes. At that time, I first started considering the idea of becoming a yoga teacher, but it felt like a dream and too unreal to chase it.
Soon after, things turned upside down for me and I moved countries, but yoga was always in my life. So many things had changed, maybe a bit too much at the same time, therefore I knew how important it was to keep yoga unchanged to keep me sane. Therefore, I put in a lot of effort to find my studio and my teachers in Manchester, and with success.
To build on my experience and knowledge, I also attended a few workshops until I came across a yoga teacher training teaser session in town. That sounded interesting! So here I was, entertaining the thought of becoming a teacher again before I even went to the session. I had pretty much decided that I will do it and worked out my finances to support the idea, however…
The India Adventure
If you’ve been reading my blog, you might know that I have yet again changed my life completely – left my office dream job and moved countries. What I haven’t told is that a big part of my new life plan was to become a yoga teacher. And the first reason why I even started saving up was to pay for the teacher training in India.
Due to the financial situation and changes in my general life plan, I have put this on hold a couple of times, but now it’s for sure – in two weeks I will be in India to chase this dream of mine.
I am as excited as I am scared.
I have never been to India, what if I don’t like it? What if the culture shock will overwhelm everything else I will experience there? What if I don’t really like the training? What if I’m physically too unfit to endure these intense five weeks? What if I’m not flexible enough? What if this dream turns out to be a dumb idea?
I wish I knew the answers to all these questions! But that’s what makes this the biggest adventure of my life. So many unknowns, but it can also have a huge impact on how my life turns out when I’m back.
One of the unknowns is the fact that I’m not 100% sure I want to become a yoga teacher. Yes, I have thought about it for a couple of years, and I have committed to this experience. I would love nothing more than to have a job that can give positive emotions to people and help them stay physically active and healthy.
I also have to be realistic. There are so many yoga teachers out there, what makes me as good as them or better than they are? Or what if I’m not cut out for it? And if I am, can I make a living being a yoga teacher?
We will see.
But until then – bring on the India Adventure!