What has YTT done to me?

I didn’t want to wait till the end of my course to write this post. Tomorrow marks the last week of my YTT training. Yes, time does fly.

In the previous week, I started to reflect increasingly on myself and the training. Did I gain anything from the course? If yes, what did I gain? Did I improve?

I shared with some of my classmates that I feel that our class has a very strong energy, that not only binds us together, but also motivates us to work together to improve. And I wasn’t the only one who felt this way. With this energy, together with the focus of the training, the relentless ‘sweet revenge’ teachings by the teachers, I saw myself improving the most with the 3 weeks, compared to my years of yoga practice. I learn something new everyday, which is good for my aging brain!

In the last 3 weeks, I am even busier compared to when I was working. After the daily class, I have to run the family errands and then come back home to do the daily homework and reading. But it was fulfilling. My body may be tired but my mind is not.

In this coming week, we will focus on completing our assessments to attain the certification and we will then go on our separate paths. Some of us will return to our previous routines, some of us will start nervously on our first teaching classes and some of us will continue to explore and think of what we should do next.

It is a great way to start the new year. I will miss dearly the energy that the class has brought to me. Thank you to my teachers and classmates in the full time Jan 2019 YTT Tirisula batch !

Does the YTT suit me?

When I first applied for the Yoga Teacher Training (YTT), my objectives were to deepen my practice and determine if I am cut out to be a yoga instructor. I also wanted to see if I am serious about becoming one.

The YTT in Tirisula not only focuses on posture practice but also anatomy and yoga philosophy. There are many things to read up, remember and apply. It is not easy. The last time that I studied so intensively was probably more than 20 years ago when I was still in school.

I am about 75% through the course and I understand why it is essential to combine anatomy and yoga philosophy with posture practice. As we begin drafting our lessons plans and teaching our classmates, I can now see why having a basic understanding of the anatomy and philosophy is important – It makes us more aware of other dynamics in a class and look out for things that may be affecting our students.

It makes me realise that it takes a lot to be a yoga instructor, not just by merely achieving those postures. It takes years, not 4 weeks. It takes experience to learn and improve.

How do I feel about becoming one? Yeah, I am still staying on my course to become one 🙂

How did I end up in YTT? Part 2

Though my brain was acting weird by telling me not to do the YTT in the last few days leading to the first day of my course, I chose to ignore my thoughts and focus on what my heart wanted to do.

So here I am, 10 days into my course. How do I feel? I feel happy, yeah happy. So I guess my heart is right this time.

Besides getting to practise the yoga that I like to do, I get to know people from different walks of life which otherwise, in my clinical corporate world, I will never get to meet. I get to learn and hear different experiences that my teachers and classmates have. I am inspired by many of them, who have so much drive and persistence to follow their passion and earn their keep, regardless of how young they are. This is definitely something that I will share with and hopefully impart it to my children.

I always believe that in every environment, it is the people who makes the difference. In the training, we share stories, we laugh, we train, we work our bodies till our sweat drip like crazy. It is hard and it is fun. It is the people that we connect with, not the environment.

I am not one of those superstar yogis on Instagram who can do those impossibly amazing postures. There are many postures that I am good with and there are also that many postures that I struggle a lot with, for example, handstand! I still have many things to work on but I am positive, because I know that I am on the right track. The cup is half full, not half empty. Yoga humbles me because I can only do what my body and mind can do in unison. I cannot rush it, I cannot force it. I have to earn it. Yoga is a journey which doesn’t end.

If it is a journey that allows me to make my mind and body stronger and calmer, to make new friends, hear new stories, I guess it is worth it.

Cheers, JT

How did I end up in YTT?

I have been in the corporate world for more than 20 years. It has been a good 20 years as I have learnt many things and the most valuable thing is, some of my colleagues are now my closed friends. I have been fairly lucky at work (or I chose to see that I am lucky) and have been given many opportunities to try different things and move up the corporate ladder. I started a family in my 30s and children ‘took charge’ of my life for more than a decade. My life, my thoughts, my activities revolved around their needs. As I head towards the 50 years old milestone, with my children growing up, I start to think about me.

I started yoga some 15 years ago. Besides being a good workout, I enjoyed the session and felt happy and peaceful at the end of the class. I always feel proud of myself when I have managed to achieve the postures consistently. I stopped for a few years when my kids were little and resumed into more regular practice when they are a bit bigger.

I am no different from other working mums. I am busy with work, busy with the children’s homework and their endless logistics needs, doing marketing for groceries and when time permits, I squeeze in an hour of Korean drama. On top of that, I try to do a daily (if I can) yoga practice at home because it just saves me the time travelling to and fro the studio.

In the last couple of years, I start thinking what will I be doing in another 10 years. Where do I see myself in 10 years time? The answer to these questions has been consistent – I hope I will not be working in the corporate world full time after 10 years. However, I cannot be just leaving the corporate world when I am 50 without something to go to or do. So what should I be doing when I am 50 and what should I do to get myself ready?

I left school decades ago and skills/ interests that I used to be good at have long disappeared from me. In the last 20 years, I have not spent time to hone any skills to increase my employability.

After thinking about it and talking to others for 2 years, I have decided to do a YTT. I want to use it to deepen my practice and also to see for myself, if teaching yoga will be something that I really want to do.

I applied for a month of absence from my company. In the last week leading to the YTT, my brain started acting weird. It kept telling me not to do it. Thoughts like I may not be cut out to be a teacher, it will be a waste of time, my current job is good and I have been given many opportunities etc, were running in my head daily.

To be continued in Part 2… JT