After over a year of teaching full time, and more than 400 classes taught, I realised that being a yoga teacher has taught me a lot about myself and human relations. It also has given me numerous times, the opportunity to put in practice the 8 limbs more about that HERE.
Not everybody will like you – shine your authentic self!
The “people pleaser” in me struggles everyday with this one, but teaching has definitely helped me accept that you cannot be everyone’s cup of tea. Although it can be hard when people don’t like your classes, especially when you overheard students talking (it happens), you also very quickly realise that the people that come back, do so for you! The more genuine you are, the more you will attract your crowd, natural selection will happen and you will teach people that align with your style. Through the practice of Yoga, you can learn to know yourself better, and show your real self to everyone around you. It might feel vulnerable, but it will also allow you to make more genuine connections.
Practice letting go.
People will be late, they will be loud, they won’t say goodbye… and none of that is about you! It’s easy to be thrown off or even offended by this type of behaviour, but by practicing letting go of these momentary events you will be able to detach your ego from these situations and realise that it does not matter. It’s a great perspective to keep in your personal life, in order to not be upset anymore by little things.
Patience, patience, patience.
Yoga definitely teaches you patience, every day on the mat. Teaching yoga opened my eyes to how we all have our own rhythm, our own timing. Being a teacher means repeating the same things often, in all the ways you can think of, and people will pick up on them when it’s their time. You are just a guide, an open door for them, and they will decide when their moment has come to walk through it. Patience is trust, it’s the belief that all will unfold when it’s supposed to. A philosophy I try to keep with me, in my classes and in my life.
Always, love first.
You have no idea what your students bring to the practice with them, as we never know what can be going on in someone’s life. Let’s say a student is being rude, you could react with a similar manner or decide to be more kind and loving. I truly believe that the moment you receive them with love, you can shift the tone of the conversation. You might even be able to shift their whole day around. Being kind and compassionate to my students is a very important part of my job and it has open the door to show love and kindness more often in my daily life too.
Helen is a performer and a Yoga teacher. She teaches Vinyasa Flow, Yin, and Meditation in Paris. Her classes are catered for busy city lifestyle people who need to reconnect with themselves in movement as well as in stillness. She regularly leads workshops and retreats, find more about her work at www.helenwatkins.yoga and follow her yogic journey on instagram @LnWatkins