A year in the making, on Tuesday night I graduated from Yoga Teacher/Holistic Coach Training led by Pamela Quinn at Elemental OM. It was bittersweet, as we gathered at our instructor’s house to be together one last time as a group to share food, friendship and laughter. We were sad that it was coming to an end, but hopeful for new beginnings.
As I do after every meditation, this morning I chose a card from my Earth Magic deck, and the one that came up was “Winter Solstice, Reflection”. Quite uncanny that a card about reflection should come up on blog day! So what does the card say about reflection?
“Review the past year and ask yourself what the most important lessons you have had to learn are, what you have accomplished, and what dreams and visions you want to manifest in the upcoming year. Whether it has been a relatively smooth ride or a challenging series of events, acknowledge your experience as being the work of Source, no matter what your judgments, fears, or joys are. Honor whatever has happened over the previous several months with gratitude and forgiveness…Once you feel complete, reflect on your present life, especially focusing on what you are grateful for. When you are finished, consider what is to come—all the different possibilities and potential that exist before you. Allow your imagination to roam without limitation or ambition, and see what shows up. Notice how you feel in your body with whatever scenario plays out in your mind. These are previews of that which is gestating, and can manifest and grow when cared for properly…”
So what important lessons did I learn and what have I accomplished? I want to reflect specifically on my year in teacher training.
1. Trust my gut. When I first spoke to the instructor about doing the teacher training, I was beginning my spiritual journey after being fired from my job. I thought immediately that it would be a good fit. I’m glad I trusted my instinct and enrolled, as I learned so much more than how to teach yoga.
2. Finding a new community was critical. We began as individuals on individual journeys, but we quickly realized our journeys had a lot in common, and that created a bond that lasted the entire year (and beyond) and provided me with incredible support at a tough time in my life.
3. Vulnerability remains powerful. As many of my fellow students told their stories, they spoke from the heart. I could see the transformation in them as they spoke about things that maybe they had never shared before. We knew the space was safe to share and to listen and support one another. It had a profound effect on the individual, yet touched all of us immensely.
4. Meditation is transformational. I had started meditating before the training, but during the year we learned new ones for different situations. It was interesting to try them out and see what their effect on me was. I feel the difference in the days when I do and don’t meditate. When I do, I feel I can handle any situation responsibly, with good judgment and with appropriate emotion. When I don’t meditate, I am irritable, quick to judge, and fly off the handle more. The practice brings so much peace to my life I can’t imagine life without it.
5. I have more work to do. I learned so much valuable information about yoga, diet, routine, meditation, Ayurveda, movement, etc. but putting it all into practice can be hard. I feel I have the tools and now I just need to learn how to use them effectively in my life.
WHAT HAVE I ACCOMPLISHED?
1. I am now a certified yoga instructor with 200 hours of training under my belt.
2. I learned how to teach a beginner’s yoga class. And that involves not only the sequencing and such, but getting in front of a group of strangers and taking them through the class in a safe way that leaves a lasting impression on them.
3. I learned the tenets of Ayurveda. I believe that PREVENTING disease should be the focus of health care, and Ayurveda has remedies for just about everything. It makes sense to me.
4. I know how to coach others and it inspires me. Twice we had the opportunity to coach a fellow student and both times it reinforced my desire to be a life coach. I have always said that my experience with my life coach was life altering, and I am strongly driven to pay that forward.
5. I made friends. It seems weird to write that, but it is hard to make friends as an adult. We all stay connected through social media, etc. but there is a difference in having friends physically near you to lean on. I am grateful for the women I met and who I now call friends.
WHAT DREAMS AND VISIONS DO I WANT TO MANIFEST IN THE NEXT YEAR?
1. I will be a life coach. I have a lot more to learn, not only about being a life coach but about myself in order to manifest this. But I feel in my bones that this is what I was meant to do.
2. I will help others. I feel I have gifts to share, and I want to do something to help others in any way I can. Things like providing a shoulder to cry on, listening, and giving support are things I can do right now.
3. I will maintain my new friendships. Now that we don’t meet every week it may be harder, but I believe our group is one that wants to maintain the ties that bind.
4. I will maintain my existing friendships. I realize how so vital my entire community is to me, and no matter if the person is right next to me or a text away, I want to keep it all alive.
5. I will keep learning. My thirst for knowledge isn’t over. In fact I feel even more stoked to dive into other spiritual topics. I have 3 books on tap to read and a workshop this weekend. Looking forward to what is ahead!
6. I will change all my “want tos” to “will” as I have just done with 1-5 above!
There are so many important lessons, accomplishments and dreams I have, but this is a great start.
So many things to be grateful for! My instructor, fellow yogis, my husband for agreeing to be on his own one night a week, the guest instructors, the community we created, I could go on and on.
I will finish with this – I dedicate the “Reflection” card to my fellow yogis. Read the paragraph and spend some time with the questions and reflect on the year together. And definitely look forward to what you dream about and what you want to manifest in your life. I believe our collective dreams and manifestations will result in revolutionary transformations that will ripple out to our families, our communities, and the universe. I am grateful to have shared the journey of the past year with you and I look forward to an amazing future.