Posts

Yoga is Within You

Thank you to our inspirational April Travel Rep, Sacha Bryce for sharing this story.

 

I am in Ubud, Bali & I am a yoga teacher.

 

That might not be the first time you’ve heard those two go together…

 

Bali & Yoga starting to sound like peanut butter & jelly!

sacha3

 

I have to share that I felt an unexpected feeling of inadequacy drape over me after about 24 hours of being in Ubud – in the heart of the yoga scene.

 

The endless selection of mala beads, yoga pants and glowing faces left me with a feeling that I wasn’t quite enough the way I am.

 

It can be easy to forget who we really are and get caught in listening to thoughts, judgments and comparisons – isolating ourselves from the world around us.

 

Yoga is not about looking peaceful or having thin legs in tight fancy pants.

 

None of this being bad or negative but entirely neutral forms– not to be mistaken with the meaning of what yoga offers.

 

Yoga is the practice of coming back into connection with what we all ALWAYS have within us.

 

            “Peace comes from within- do not seek it without” – Buddha

 

Everyone’s path is different and will look different – but it is important to remember that we’re all going towards the same thing.

 

I listened to the founder of the Yoga Barn speak this week amongst a large group of yoga students. He shared that people commonly ask him if he “does yoga”- he said he responds with a smile, a laugh and then walks away.

 

No he does not attend the asana classes but he said he feels he is always doing “his yoga”- it is just not in the form of downward dog.

sacha4

 

As I was listening to him speak I couldn’t help but think how I had the desire to start something as wonderful as him and how I should be making these larger steps towards change. The ego has this quick tendency to want to compare with others. I realized how problematic it would be if everyone in that room, including myself had opened a Yoga Barn!

 

We’re not all meant to be doing the same things and that is very simple and obvious- but easy to forget.

 

The seeking for the external forms – whether it is money, beauty or things will inevitably lead to an internal feeling of lacking that can never be filled.

 

Practice yoga by remembering who you are. Yoga is within.

 

Enough. You are more than enough exactly as you are (wherever you are) in each moment.

 

 

sacha1

 

Sacha is a Yoga Trade Travel Representative – living nomadically all over the globe as a student and teacher of yoga. She is passionate about sharing the benefits of yoga as a way of living in connection with oneself and the living world around us.

Nama-Stay Yourself: 5 Tips to Teaching Yoga with Authenticity

I didn’t expect that teaching yoga would in turn teach me so many lessons.

Teaching with authenticity came as an unexpected challenge as a new teacher.

Without knowing what was going on in the bodies and minds of my students, I felt unable to stand strong in my own feet and in my own voice. I naturally began to defend my vulnerabilities by creating a separation between the students and myself. Teaching became a performance where I felt like I was on a stage with an audience.

I have learned that if we want our students to feel comfortable, secure and connected we must strip off our masks and face our students as we are- allowing them to be exactly as they are.

“Tear off the mask. Your face is glorious.”– Rumi

 

1) Practice, then Preach

Teach only what you know. Self-practice will give you the deepest understanding of yoga that you can then share with others. You are only able to share your experience with your students. It is not possible to teach something that you have not yet experienced for yourself. This would be like teaching a language that you cannot yet understand. Anyone can repeat the words of someone else but to teach effectively you must be able to express what it is you have learned. Share your practice.

IMG_0234

2) Yoga is Connection

Make direct contact with your students. Through speech, sight and touch you have all the tools to connect with every student. Ask questions – create a safe environment for people to interact with you. Make eye contact – let people know that you are seeing them. Always first assess what the students are comfortable with, but people generally like to be hands – on adjusted. Safely assisting and supporting your students can immediately create a connection. You are not a YouTube video – take advantage of being in real time!

 

3) Teach People, Not Poses

Respond to your students. If you are not cultivating awareness of your students while teaching them – how can you expect them to be aware of what you are teaching? Teaching is never one – way but a reciprocal process. You are teaching unique individuals. Stay tuned into how the class is receiving and responding to what you are saying. Approach the students with a sense of curiosity and respond according to their needs. Each moment is a mystery and so is each class – each student brings something new that you can learn from – stay present.

 

4) To be Sacred does not mean to be Serious

Enjoy yourself. Trust me that if you are not enjoying teaching – no one else will be IMG_0235enjoying your teaching either. You are creating a space for people to explore themselves as living human beings – dropping into the excitement and aliveness that exists in each moment. Teach what you feel passionate about so you are able to share this joy. Remember not to take yourself too seriously, as it’s not really about you anyways!

 

5) Live Yoga

As a teacher, it is your responsibility to maintain the practice outside of the class and into the world around you. This does not mean you should attempt to be who you think is the “perfect yoga instructor” but to live your truth – making conscious choices of how you interact with life. It’s not about having anything – the perfect practice, the perfect diet or even a smile always on your face – but about cultivating awareness to your relationship with yourself and the world around you – in every possible moment. You have the opportunity to share the reasons why you practice and teach yoga that stretch far beyond the mat and into the world – share this.

May everything we do benefit all beings.

 

 

IMG_0240

 

Sacha is a Yoga Trade Travel Representative – living nomadically all over the globe as a student and teacher of yoga. She is passionate about sharing the benefits of yoga as a way of living in connection with oneself and the living world around us.