One of the things we are told in our teachers training is to bring your own special offering to the classes that we teach. It’s a real challenge to come up with what your special offering will be. For me, it’s been some trial and error.
This past week, I listened to a webinar from Yogateacherprep.com called: How to NOT Fail: 5 Mistakes that Kill a Yoga Teaching Career – An Exclusive Online Webinar hosted by Laura Martini. In it she talked about five mistakes she made as a yoga teacher over her ten year career so far and offered ways to work around them.
The first was neglecting your personal practice. This one stood out for me in particular. I have not been very good at keeping a regular practice at anything in my life. I am a true Pisces in that I an kind of flaky and none committal in regards to keeping up with any of my passions. I have kind of always been that way.
The next suggestion that was made was to have something special about your practice that only you do. It’s like building your own brand of yoga. At the end of every practice, you want to have something that your clients take home with them and share with others. Since I am so new to teaching, I am not sure I have developed this yet. I think it’s all tied into the not neglecting your personal practice.
Taking those two lessons, I started practising on my own at home this week. It went well for a few days then I fell out of practice again. It’s actually hard to carve out that time when you have so many other things that you need to be doing. Having to work a full time job just to pay the bills makes carving out that time so much harder. Then there are the millions of little distractions like Netflix, Facebook, and other things of that nature. What I need to do is give myself the permission to back off on distractions and forgive myself when I do find myself distracted.
During one of my teachings last week, I brought my Mermaid Oracle cards with me. I gave my student a small reading when we were done. She reads cards for herself and was able to listen to my reading and take in the message from the cards that she needed.
I am not exactly a typical yoga teacher, I took my own interpretations from my training and applied them to my own world view, which is modern pagan. I work from a wheel of the year view of life and I try to apply that to when I teach. I know that I am not going to helping my students to reach oneness with the universe, I am going to help them to reach oneness with themselves. My own practice is about listening to my body and hearing what it is telling me. When I teach, I ask my students to feel their bodies out and ask them if there is something they can be doing to help make their asana better. I like giving assists to help my students bring awareness to different areas they may have been forgetting.
Slowly, I am starting to figure out what my offerings are as a yoga teacher and I know that it will change and grow as I change and grow in my own practice. Only time will tell where I end up after all this.