Saturday, November 09, 2013

NaBloPoMo Day 9: On becoming a yoga teacher

I'm about a month into my yoga teaching course and already there has been so much learning going on both on and off the matt. And maybe I'll talk about that at a later date (have specific questions, I'd love to answer them! Leave them in the comments!).

One of the best things about starting this course is that I now have something to say when people ask me what I'm up to besides "Oh, you know, still unemployed" and they say something like "It must be so amazing to have so much free time, you're so lucky." And yes, I am lucky. But I'm also constantly worried about the stress financially I'm putting on my little family, my inabilities to land a job, what I'm doing with my life, and trying to stay out of and away from rejection based depression (Unemployment is not what people with jobs thinks it is).

So, having something to say like "I just started a yoga teaching course!" means that I have something else to talk about, something that isn't as insanely awkward for me and, I presume, the person I'm talking to.

What I didn't expect was this reaction when I say "I'm becoming a yoga teacher."

"Oh! That's great! So can you do an unassisted handstand?" - No, I can't. And I might not ever be able to, and that's cool.

"Awesome! Do headstand right now." - No, thank you.

"Good for you! Show me, right now, how you can turn yourself into a pretzel...go." - I'm not freaking show.

I find these responses really quite odd and demonstrative of how little we, the public, understand what yoga really is. Did you know you can DO yoga without ever rolling out your matt? Without ever creating shapes with your body? Did you know if you do roll out your matt that the shape you create will never look like another persons? Inspector Climate is not as flexible as I am...and I'm not as flexible as heaps of other people. Yet the shapes he creates have the exact benefit as the shapes I create and the shapes that those more flexible create, too.

That being said, people say equally ridiculous things when I say my sector is "climate change advocacy" - "So, you think climate change is real, eh?"



  1. A couple of my coworkers have really gotten into yoga and are trying to get me involved. I've really been thinking about it. They swear by it!

  2. Deidre....
    I have several questions about yoga. Does it hurt? Can an injury-prone person such as myself partake in yoga? Does it help maintain mental/emotional health and ward off minor mood swings? As you very well know, I am a huge RDJ fanatic, and he does yoga, so I'm slightly interested. ;)

  3. I'm glad you are enjoying it!

    For what it's worth, I think people are just awkward/bad conversationalists. I have a pretty standard job (civil engineer), and almost without fail, the two first questions are: "Do you build bridges?" and "Oh, do women do that?!" Sigh.

  4. Lol.. turn yourself into a pretzel...NOW!


    XO Lourdes

  5. Hahaha. Great job at refusing to be a pretzel for hire.

    On a serious note, it bothers me that most of the world assumes that Hatha yoga is all that there is to yoga. So, so, so much more to that whole philosophy.

  6. haha....when i was a ballet dancer everyone would be like, oh show me some ballet, i would be like what here in the restaurant (or any other place we were) no thanks, i'm not a circus act!
    now that i'm on a Pilates teaching course and i tell people about it they start telling me how much they like yoga, and i have to tell them that i've never done a yoga class in my life...Pilates...not yoga....

  7. Oj! Some people's children! There were a few who actually seemed irritated that I didn't finish a novel when I was looking for work. It was the same sort of thing, "Well, you had all that free time." Rriigghhtt!

  8. The ideas people get with yoga. You tell a man you do yoga he gets turned on, and a woman thinks you're a hippy. Yoga is AMAZING ... and I am neither sexy, nor a hippy. - so what you're doing is awesome - keep at it! ... and I know what you mean when people assume being jobless is a blessing for more free time.... uh, not quite.

  9. I've also been struggling with getting a job (currently a temp), so I know how you feel. Having free time when you're unemployed is not enjoyable or relaxing, really. It's almost more stressful than having a job!