Holy treadmill minutes, you guys. I am not patient—it wouldn’t even make the top 100 hits for words to describe me. I’m one of those people who thrive on instant gratification. Amazon Prime can get me toilet paper in 2 hours? Uh, no brainer. You’re telling me it takes 45 minutes—once the oven is preheated—to make this frozen meal? Yeah, no, I’m going to take my chances with 3 microwave minutes (which are almost as bad as treadmill minutes) thank you very much.
Being impatient is never a good thing, but it really seems to love to table top me and tie my shoe laces together when it comes to my work life. In May, I will be able to say that I have been teaching for one year. I freaking love to teach yoga, you guys. I am a straight-up yoga nerd – I have zero chill when it comes to my love for yoga. If you follow me on any type of social media, I know you know what I’m talkin’ about. Sorry, not sorry.
And even though I’ve only been teaching a year, I feel like I should be better. I feel like I should know more. I have this expectation that I should have the skill, finesse, experience, etc. of “the big kids” (teachers who have been teaching for 3, 4, 7, 10+ years). A lot of this pressure is due to social media. I spend hours each week trolling and watching and creeping on yoga teachers and yogis from every corner of the world, and in doing so I can’t help but compare, and I almost always come up short. I see the crazy things that people are doing or teaching, and I start to build up my list of “shoulds”, regardless of if it’s what I truly want or what I have the capacity to do. This leads to a constant lingering feeling of “not enough” and that I am behind in my achievements and abilities. A reminder, more for myself than anyone else: I’ve only been teaching for one year. ONE YEAR.
I’m wildly impatient, but that doesn’t mean that I’m scared to put in the work it takes to get where I want to go. You guys, I put so much time into my yoga classes. I spend hours and hours each week reading yoga books, putting together sequences, creating playlists, coming up with themes, and practicing so I can then in turn improve my teaching. This is the work that I love with everything I’ve got, you know? But so often, I still am self-conscious about my offerings. I still worry that people won’t like what I’ve created for them, or that it won’t measure up to their expectations. And when I see what other people have or are doing and I fall into a headspace where I’m comparing and contrasting, it’s hard to look at what I have, what I’m doing, and say, “Yeah, not good enough. Keep trying. Maybe you’ll get there, maybe you won’t.”
I’m currently two weeks into a program called 7 Weeks to Bliss, led by Jacki Carr and Mary Beth LaRue, with 60+ extraordinarily inspiring, curious, passionate women. One woman was brave enough to share in our Facebook group what she’s going through in regards to the work that we have embarked on in this 7-week journey. The words she wrote that stuck with me, and sequentially inspired this post, were that she is trying to trust the process and be patient. So simple, yet so profound. YES. So much freakin’ yes. I have to practice patience and be gentle with myself, or else I will continue to drive myself right off my rocker. Another amazing human who I adore and originally met through a yoga mentorship program with Mary Beth Larue, who is also participating in the program, told me that I am right where I need to be and while I’m here, enjoy the ebbs and flows. Oh, my heart! I’m such a cheeseball, but it’s seriously about to explode. Sidebar: I am so grateful for the endless love and support from the people I am lucky to have in my life. Anyways, I digress.
To recap my learnings through all of this I’ll break it down into bullet points in the form of a note to self. (The Type-A side of me just got goosebumps.)
- Trust the freaking process, man. It wouldn’t kill you to practice some patience every damn day—and by that, I mean minute-to-minute.
- Similarly, enjoy the process. Stop taking yourself so damn seriously and lighten up.
- Keep doing what you’re doing. It’s working, even if you don’t have everything you want right when you want it. Reminder: the world does not work like that. Chill out.
- Be gentle with yourself. Most importantly, be kind to yourself. You’re doing the best that you can.
- Spend less time worrying about what other people are doing and what people might think, and focus on yourself. Comparison is the root of all happiness. Boom.
Anybody else struggle with trusting the process and being patient – especially with themselves? Let’s hear it. I’d love to jam with you! I’m all ears.