It is a job where you get the attention, the control, the freedom, students looking up to you, friends envying your flexible hours and people coming to you telling you yoga teachers are sexy and you are one of those – instant ego boost!
But is it?
Despite the often glamourised life, teaching yoga has its fair share of the daily grind. It can be fun, inspiring, fulfilling but it always boils down to the commitment to show up 100%, be fully present and give you best.
Here’s the hard truth that you need to hear if you are an aspiring yoga teacher or you are thinking of signing up for your first yoga teacher training.
- Some days you just do not feel like going to class
You will feel like the most uninspiring person in the entire world. Guess what? You show up, and leave everything outside of the practice room.
2. Some days you are sick
If you are lucky, someone would cover your class. If you are not, you suck it up, show up and teach the best you can.
3. Some days you step into class and you KEEP fumbling upon your words
Speak slowly, and stay calm. This is when your meditation and mindfulness practice comes in handy. Do not panic, be compassionate.
4. Some days you are nursing an injury
Any body might encounter an injury at some point in time. When you are nursing one, forget demos. Use the power of verbal cues. Practice leading a class without demo-ing even when you have a perfectly capable body and tons of energy.
5. Some days you are nursing a broken heart
For whatever reason. It is your job and duty to shake off those emotions and distractions during your time in class and be fully present for your students.
6. Some days you have no idea what to teach
Don’t just walk in without a plan. Talk to people, read articles on sequencing, watch videos. Don’t wait for inspiration and ideas to find you – seek them out.
7. Some days you get disillusioned by the yoga world
“It’s not supposed to be like that!” Reality is reality, business is business. Don’t work for a studio whose beliefs and practices don’t align with yours. Don’t partner with people who do not share your beliefs. Dig and set your own values, then follow that path. But always re-examine your choices with the new knowledge and insights that you gain along the way.
I meant for this to be a skeptical sounding post, not one to encourage people to step into teaching without considering the hustling aspect of the job. Step in with your eyes open, ready to work hard. Teaching is heavy responsibility, where people entrust you with their bodies and listen carefully to every single word you say in class. People dedicate a portion of their days to what you are bringing to the mat, hoping to feel better at the end of their Shavasana. Practicing and teaching are totally different, practicing can be a hobby, but teaching should never be treated as one.