Writing mostly for myself, occasionally sharing my ponderings, spiritual whispers on the Blog. As long as I know myself and have been alive I have always wanted to achieve something. Anything. I wanted to be desperately good at something, not just good but really excellent. I have had a drive for success as long as I know, I have always been a work horse - workaholic. Not really sure where this stems from, whether its my communistic upbringing or my mother leading by example, loving her work as a chef. Or my guess is, it may be something to do with my Mercury, Saturn and Sun in Leo in the natal chart.
Success - that big word, I prefer "owning your shit" (pardon my french), is a feeling of never really been acknowledged as being good enough - yes, definitely hello daddy issues! So, after few small failures here and there, identity crisis in my late teens, failed marriage in my early twenties, all being part of the walk towards my spiritual path. Some of these obstacles even deepened by a feeling of pain, guilt and loss of my mother to bowel cancer, dealing with my alcoholic father and later high-lightened in my early thirties, after falling in love with a heroin addict. I can safely say my life up until now, has been quite colourful.
Being a slow learner, I have made a decision to grasp some control and applied for a degree in Fashion Design, however quickly realising few years later, that fashion world is million miles away from what I thought it would be; it has proved fickle, bitchy, competitive and mostly what I really disliked about it, is that it really uses young desperadoes like me as a free labour, for very little return. Moving on, after four years of ups and downs, finally holding that useless paper that was the Degree, knowing I will never ever make any use of it, I still had this yearning inside of me to find success somewhere. I was like a headless chicken, trying to find my purpose, my calling the essence of who I am. People always called me strong. What does this even mean? Essentially, when I qualified as a Yoga Teacher, I remember thinking " yeayyyyy " here is my chance, to be really good, and prove everyone...
Striving to be better, always hoping to achieve more, to shine in this field I have chosen. Almost as if the determination of my own success and the fire in my belly, was gifted to me by a Guardian Angel in the crib. Fast forward 2018, where there are million of yoga teachers popping up here there and everywhere. Every yoga studio advertising their own unique Teacher training. All these young teachers, competing with each other, in the studios, on social media, proving to the world, how enlighten they are in the numerous asana poses and a meaningful capture under teeth. I have been there and done it all, actually it is making me quite sad and little frustrated, I must admit.
I have recently been invited, to such a Teacher training as an Assistant (in an unnamed studio in London), where I was quite shocked and really surprised my the lack of professionalism and respect in the whole epic shebang. By dressing in white and singing mantra, and teaching the whole wonderful history of yoga philosophy to brand new wannabe teachers, all was overshadowed by complaints, lack of discipline, cancellations and lateness of main the teacher, who was overwhelmed and quite visibly overstretched and stressed by the experience, and as a result late for every meeting I attended. When I raised concerns about such an approach, all was being ignored and brushed under the carpet. Needless to say the meaning of Aparighrapha and Satya, springs to mind. I don't need to mention that I no longer work for this studio.
Well, I am kind of over it. One of my close friends recently told me, and that has was really the inspiration behind this blog post, that unless you work in a big studio - you are not considered successful, as a yoga teacher. This statement has stayed with me and somehow managed to hit the raw spot. Raw spot is part of the journey of Chiron - who is in my second house, connected to some deep wounds, self doubt and self worth (here you go)
I have been teaching over 6 years now, sometimes going weeks on end without having a day off, working covering, trying to push myself forward, sometimes taking to teach up to sixteen classes a week, to make the ends meet. Not involving only studio classes, private classes, corporate classes and retreats organisation without any third party involved, studying, peeping, not even mentioning a certain festival I was involved for two miserable years, balancing and juggling it all, whilst cycling around London like a crazy-ass Hurricane. No wonder I got worn out and burn out few times. So keeping my dignity and self respect, back to the point, I wonder why am I affected by this, as I have always worked hard, tried my best, helped others along the path, never scared of taking extra work, wearing myself out. Was I too pushy? Too bossy, too opinionated? Too strong or too determined? Maybe overly confident I can do it all..
I will never know, but I have somehow lost that sparkle that was igniting the itch, and came to a point where the conclusion is to be content where I am. To stop striving, to live my own truth and to stop pretending I can do it all. I am ok to be teaching in small studios, where I feel connected, to the students, to the values and to the vibes that resonate with me. Where human connections still matter. It is a double edge sword after all, where would the studios be if there were no teachers to teach, as teachers where would we teach if there was no studios. I don't need to be justify myself or prove I am worthy, nor I need to judged by my performance or by the amount of my IG followers, this is no longer my priority. Success is a measure we create in our head, it is matter of perspective after all.
We etchers, not just yoga, but generally are here to serve others, and whether we are exclusive or teach for a big studio, or run multiple yoga retreats each year, or have millions of followers or any other accolades that come as a perk of this job it certainly does not mean that we are good humans, we can achieve this status or global fame and earn loads of $$$ and then still go off and bitch around and compete, compare with or to others, maybe even get trashed and snort substances (no kidding, no judgement) it is really up to us. If we all felt this is the way, this would be an Ex-Factor of Yoga. We are here to educate, to share, to expand people`s awareness and give parts of ourselves to others, to enable others to open up - not only their their body,but also to see and feel, expand their energy, to heal their wounds, to help them to free up those notions of suffering, pain, anxiety or any kind of negativity. In my opinion, this is precisely what makes a really great and successful teacher. Someone who does not make you cry in a class (yes this still happens these days and not for the good reason) but someone who gives you a hug after.
Accepting that this is it, and we chose our own paths, we chose our jobs and we choose how we see the world around us. Ahimsa - non harming, Satya - speaking your truth, staying real to ourself. Letting shit go, whatever it is that needs shifting. Those hardest lessons are always the ones that stay most resonate ones. We want constantly, it is our human nature to want more, more love, more light, more success, more money, more students, more classes, more followers, more leggings, more pats on our backs.... more more, give me more... But you know what, less is actually more, even if it may sound like a cliche. Appreciating what is there right now, right here, on our plates, in our minds, in our homes. Being content with what is, rather than focusing or manifesting more of this or more of that. Reminder to ourselves to embrace that what we have right now, as others (your friends, ex colleagues, people you have studied with, or compete strangers) would have given anything for, what you have right now. And this was said by someone who is the least "yoga-or-spiritual" orientated person I know. Her advice is - Just simply, be glad you are you.
Success and failure, the opposite variations are just the matter of perspective. Are we not right where we are meant to be because of our failures? Is the success not overcoming those obstacles in the first place? And most importantly, which one teaches us the most, the success or the failure? Perhaps, we are on this Earth to experience it all. I have learnt this recently, in one of my past life regression session. Our soul is here to learn all, to experience and embrace the positive and the negative, there is not just one lesson. There are many learnings, so we can see what serves us the most. We must live through the lows and well as appreciate the highs, and overcome the valley to peak the mountain.
Whether we love or hate, or are happy or sad, whether we are celebrating life and sharing it all on social media or stressing out over our state of mind, (myself included) it is good every now and again to stop, to switch off. To take a break and to look within to find a sense of calm, sometime cry and sometimes laugh, and eventually slowly maybe start sweeping up those dark corners of the mind, because nobody really has it all figured out. It may just be a beautiful beginning of reaching contentment, which is a powerful lesson. I still have a long way to go, but hey it is a process, but I no longer care about being successful, I think in my own way, I own my stuff, my failures but also my success. I indeed have already what I need and that feeling of not being good enough - wanting to prove something, has somewhat vanished in the past few months (ok I am not going to lie, it took many powerful mantra sessions, reiki healing, crystals, incense, tarot, astrology, feminine workshops, singing bowls, ayahuasca, few trips to India and other spiritual nonsense) So that the more I detached from all of the other noise, I could finally come to a realisation that there is nothing to prove after all, we are good enough. We are part of life, part of a never ending circle, part of the Universe and sometimes finding who we are, is essentially what we have been looking for all along, but maybe we just chose not to see it.