I almost always have one of two inspiration issues when I sit down to write a blog: overabundance and underabundance ("underabundance" isn't actually a word, but why shouldn't it be?). Today, I suffer from an overabundance. I just finished rereading The Happiness Project, I've started reading The Joy of Living by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche, and I'm starting to consistently read one passage a day from Rolf Gates's fabulous Meditations from the Mat.
I started this blog as a way to have an outlet for myself to sort through the massive, life-changing yogic education I had received months prior through my teacher training at Sonic. Even before Sonic, I had started reading books on meditation, getting deeper into a yoga practice, and found myself learning all these crazy new words and theories and ideas. A blog seemed like a perfect way to make sense of things for myself, one week at a time, and to share what I was learning with whoever was interested in reading.
It quickly became a source of stress, pressure, obligation, writer's block, judgment, and disappointment. That's not all it's been, of course, but more often than not I have anxiety about not living up to my own expectations, or feeling shy or embarrassed about putting myself out there. I forget that I didn't start this to be a Yoga Expert or a saint or anything - it was about sharing my own journey.
Lately, I feel like I've cleared out a lot of the spiritual and mental cobwebs that have been hanging around. I feel more connected to my meditation practice than I have since I was in teacher training, I feel happier and more at peace at home after going through my Happiness Project-inspired cleanfest, I feel secure and strong in my job teaching beautiful children, and I feel like I'm really ready to make my personal yoga practice a priority again.
During my teacher training, I fell in love with the idea of being a Perfect Virtuous Yogi. I loved the idea of meditating every day (maybe I'd meditate for an hour a day!), having a "code" to live my life by in the Yoga Sutras, and maybe even becoming vegetarian! I was absorbed in my education and my practice all the time, every day - even when I fell off the meditation wagon a bit (okay, a lot) when Marc and I started dating in the middle of the training.
Once the training was over, however, things were different. I got caught up in major anxiety that I wasn't ready to be a yoga teacher, I was so afraid of how much work I was going to have to put into supporting myself as a freelance yoga teacher, and I lost myself in my insecurities, judgments, and fear for awhile. Not to say I didn't do anything - I didn't get to where I am now by accident, after all - but it was very hard. Even though at this present moment I am thrilled with how my career has gone and am so in love with teaching children, I've realized that I have shied away from really delving deep into the practice of yoga. Not just working on my arm balances and chaturangas, but "Living My Yoga," as we like to say.
Now that the dust of the past two-and-change years seems to be settling a little bit, I'm re-prioritizing.
I had vastly underestimated how much of a commitment I'd have to make day-to-day in my continuing education and practice. I should have had an idea - my teachers called our training, "Yoga nursery school," telling us we were barely scratching the surface. They crammed in as much knowledge and education as they possibly could in the 200 hours allotted, but any progress beyond that is up to each individual. I knew that intellectually, but now I fully understand how it applies to my practical, everyday life.
The point of all of this rambling is that yoga is a top priority on my life. It has changed my life dramatically for the better, and I'm still at the very beginning of my journey. This blog is supposed to serve my journey, and I want to get better at letting it. One of my resolutions - and believe it or not, I have yet another post in me about The Happiness Project and resolutions, so stay tuned for that - is to spend more time on my blog. Often I carve out an hour or two for it a week, and then feel like I'm cramming to write something amazing, or I just write something really quick, like a link to an article. There's nothing wrong with that, necessarily - the blog police aren't going to get me for being lazy or neurotic - but for my own sake, I want to change that.
So now that I've set the bar way up high for myself...stay tuned to see what next week brings!