Friday, January 22, 2010

The Struggleometer.

I haven't been blogging every single practice these days... and I like it that way. There is a lot of mental ease in my practice these days. I am really constantly trying to keep myself out of judging mentality. I'm just showing up and practicing. When I got home from training, I had a lot of feelings about how I should be and how my practice should look as a teacher.

The thing I hold to tried and true that I learned in training is to be an example to my students. So the ways in which I do that are:

1) I take Savasana very, very seriously. I try my damndest to get there quick and not move. They say it so many times over and over, and I didn't move much before training, but I really try to get people thinking about the health benefits of being still when I teach, and I try to model that good behavior.

2) Similar to #1, I try to move with grace, and that includes resting between standing postures without moving, just focusing on the breath. Hey we all have a stray hair or a wardrobe malfunction once in a while but I try to be a good example there.

3) I try to manage the things that come up in my practice with frequency.
- Judging myself and others
- Being competitive - wanting to have the best pose in the room
- Cutting myself down - I can't do this, I can't do that, I can't balance in standing balancing series is my most frequent thought by far.
- All the type A crap - wondering what kind of practice I'll have, wanting to "look" like a teacher should look

4) Managing my struggle-ometer
When I did a back to back last week, I knew I had to pace myself through the first class. All I decided to do was keep things light in my mind. The class flew by and my postures didn't change that much from when my struggle-ometer is at full blast (11 out of 10 like Spinal Tap.) But I felt lighter, happier, and easier after class.

5) water
I drink less, period. I do make sure to drink at party time and fixed firm when I'm teaching afterward though. Getting into savasana after the standing series with no water is a habit that I love. THere's no need to add cold water sloshing around in there when everything's trying to enjoy


Doing a water free class in the middle of training opened my mind on the water front and I'm so happy for it.


I taught the best class I have ever taught on Monday night. I can't get into why but basically there was someone in that class I had been waiting to kill. I taught an incredibly focused class. If I had practiced I would have died (with pleasure). I know they say that some people don't listen to the teacher and just do the auto-pilot thing, but I'm not like that. Nor were the students that day. They were listening. They were with me. I took every single posture to the max. They stayed with me - I could tell at the end they'd all had their brains turned off for 90 minutes.

My brain, your body. As Diane Ducharme says, I'm driving for the next 90 minutes. It was so incredible and the students were so focused - I mean like no one fell out of standing bow! I fall out almost every single time multiple times on the first set, so there were three times where I just said Wow. I don't throw that into teaching much, but I was blown away by their focus. I wish I had taped that one cause I have yet to tape one of my classes and (gulp) practice along to it.


bikramyogachick said...

I think you may have coined a new phrase. The strugglemeter. I love it!

thedancingj said...

This is an awesome post. I'm super excited for you. It sounds like you are seriously hitting your stride with this teaching thing. I was just thinking today about how COOL it would be to get everyone to switch of their brain and move with the yoga. And here you are, doing it!!

P.S. YES DIANE! MY LOVE OF MY LIFE! (Ahem. Sometimes I get excited about her.)

P.P.S. Just tape it and do it. The first one will be the hardest, I bet. And then you will start learning sooooo much! Even MORE than right now!! :)

Sisya said...

Damn! I want to take your class!
Thank you for a great post!