I try to remind students (and myself) that we are much more alike than we are different. I ask them to breathe together, as you never know how much the reminder of breath is helping the student next to you get through a challenging life moment. I know what it’s like to “what if” yourself to death, to live in a state of fear and anxiety where it feels like making a decision will leave you paralyzed. But I’ve been grateful lately to also experience pure joy and bliss where the mind is empty and quiet and there is no desire to be anywhere other than the current place and moment.
I recently went to Portland to see my family and in particular, all my nieces and nephews who vary in age, from the youngest currently in the belly to the oldest being 6. They are the cutest little beings and when we are all together sharing a meal, I like to call it controlled chaos. What I hear the most when the kids start to whine and cry leading to bigger fits, is my sisters’ asking them to “identify their needs” by saying, “Use your
Recently I started reading and also doing Julia Cameron’s book called The Artist Way. The book kept showing up in my path so I figured I should listen to that message. From the start of the book, you have to commit to three pages of free flow writing daily which has taken me anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. On top of that, you also have to take yourself on an “Artist’s Date” which is another two-hour commitment per week. My initial enthusiasm quickly got replaced by a sense of dread as I had just added another thing to my ever-growing “to-do” list. I’m big on efficiency so I really started questioning if this was the best use of my time before getting started. I’m also extremely curious and curiosity won out. I was interested to see if a successful book like this with such amazing testimonials, would work on me or perhaps for me.
I’ve been listening to a lot of NPR’s, “How I Built This,” and what I’ve come to realize is that the most popular and successful household brands had no idea what they were doing when they started. Neither did I with my online classes. I knew one aspect of it which also happens to be my passion, Yoga. When people encouraged me to do it, they said, I would just have to release 14 classes. I never ever thought a blog would be necessary and probably laughed at the people who called themselves bloggers. I never realized I would have to do marketing and learn boring concepts that make me want to break out in a rash like SEO and CTA.
Looking back now, I think how could I not have realized that I was starting an online business? How could I have been so naive? I questioned my common sense. But the thing is if you listen to episodes from how Whole Foods, Crate and Barrel, and Lonely Planet got started, none of them knew what they were doing. They all had a strong burning desire that kept pulling at them all day long until they gave into that energy force and created an action plan. Which brings me to my next point. All the brands stated above had a choice. They could fold before giving themselves a chance because they realized how much they did not know, or they could take the time to learn it.
As a full-time Yoga teacher in Los Angeles, I spend a lot of my time in my car. I can listen to the same songs on all 5 stations, or I can utilize that time to gain some free knowledge. Everything I need to learn on SEOs, CTAs and online platforms can be found for free on Youtube or other people’s podcasts who have had success and are willing to share their knowledge to you for FREE. It is all available to you if you are hungry, honest and humble enough to realize and acknowledge that you might need help learning about certain aspects of the business.
As I adjusted my yoga schedule recently, I have gained a new group of students who are asking me questions that I have not had to answer in awhile compared to my regular group of yogis. A big priority for me when building this site is to empower the students. To give the knowledge back to them by posting videos on my Youtube channel which builds their yoga practice from the ground up with my own personal cues and tips. In other words, “free knowledge” for those who are interested. What surprises me, is how few of them actually watch it. You are already showing up on your mat. Why wouldn’t you take the time to educate and empower yourself with the free knowledge already out there especially if it’s being offered by the teacher you are currently studying with? In my case and maybe yours, I’ve already started the online platform, and perhaps you have started a new business. So why wouldn’t you take the time to empower and educate yourself?
YOU CAN MAKE EXCUSES OR YOU CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN
I recently took a class with a senior yoga teacher who told me she liked the version of the twist I was doing but she doesn’t know HOW to teach it. To me, that’s just lazy. If you’re going to charge people thousands of dollars for teacher trainings but don’t know how to teach a basic twist, you have no business doing that. The how is not the problem here. In my opinion, it is a question about passion and desire: as long as you have access to the internet or a book, you can learn how to teach that twist. You can make excuses or you can make it happen. You can focus on your lack of resources—and I must admit I often do this and it can be a valid concern especially when it comes to lack of financial resources—or you can find a way to make it happen. Perhaps you feel a bit stuck because you can’t invest in your business in the way that you would want? But how does that mindset help you? How does that help your action plan? Your dream and potential? Or you can keep moving forward one step at a time. Start with the free knowledge that is already out there. Educate yourself on those that have done a version of what it is you are trying to do. Save yourself some headaches and most likely money by learning from their mistakes.
This is your life, “so whatever you choose to believe will be the concept that runs your mind.” (Joe Vitale)
What do you choose? Fear or self-empowerment? Excuses and standing still or free knowledge as a step forward?
Let me know in the comments!
Long ago before Lululemon was the norm in class, there was a dude named Paulie Zink who taught Taoist Yoga. He was also a master of martial arts and used his yoga practice as the base/foundation for his training. He would start with supine poses which he held for 5-10 minutes. Two hours later, Paulie would begin the Yang portion of his training. At this point in time, Taoist Yoga is what we know as Yin yoga today. However, not in its entirety. Only the part dealing with Yin principles.
Taoist Yoga | Father of Yin Yoga
Paul Grilley is the most well-known teacher in the Yin style. He met Paulie Zink in 1989 and trained with him for one year.