My Experience as a Yoga Teacher Trainee
by Sam Trueman
I think everyone at some time needs to walk the path of self discovery, it will be different for each person and some may never walk this path, and that is ok, but I think when you get fed up with the suffering inside yourself and the suffering in the world, you look for something else, another way, and my way was through becoming a Yoga Teacher. I am not telling you to all rush out and become Yoga Teachers, this was just how I began to find myself.
In the beginning, of course, I did not realize that this was what I would be doing, I thought it sounded pretty cool, to be a Yoga Teacher, you know, learn a few poses and sun salutations and that would be about it, a piece of cake, I thought it would be simple. I really think I was pretty naive coming into this traineeship, I don't think I could even begin to fathom where it would take me.
Now that I look back over the last 14 months, it has taken me on a totally different path, actually seeing what I have hidden for so many years in the deepest, darkest places of my body, but the most important thing was that I was not even aware of it. I thought I was the happiest, sweetest person going, I had no problems or issues that needed to be looked at, but little did I know after practicing 6 days a week, every single day on my yoga mat, uncomfortable feelings just kept rising to the surface. I thought I was going a bit crazy, I had never felt these kind of feelings before, yoga is supposed to be fun, I don't want these "icky" feelings, I thought the best thing to do would be to push them away, it is "totally interfering" with my yoga practice. Again, little did I know that these were the feelings that needed to be looked at, all these feelings I had suppressed for so many years were all kept away in my muscles waiting to resurface. It took me quite some time to be comfortable, and trust me it is still really tough, I have by no means perfected this, it is an ongoing process I think throughout life, feeling each moment and being ok with whatever arises and not suppressing how you feel.
That may sound easy, but it has been my toughest and biggest challenge. Looking at these sensations and feelings and then trying to be ok with them and all this while practicing yoga. The thing is now that you are aware of yourself and feelings, it is a constant process in every moment on and off the mat. I know it probably sounds all a bit daunting and even overwhelming, which it can be at times. Beginning this teacher traineeship has been the best thing I have ever done and I know that without Yoga I would never have looked within myself to see who I really was. It's also very reassuring and comforting being within a centre of people who are all going through the same thing, so you are never alone. My teachers and fellow trainees have been great, always there to talk to and help you through every situation. I always try and reassure myself that it is never as bad as it seems and it is never too difficult if you only allow yourself to be open to any situation and if you are confused, to ask someone for help.
We are drawing to the end of the traineeship, but I know it is only the beginning. I have learnt so much in the last 14 months about myself and yoga but also at the same time I have let go of a lot as well, so I guess there is that constant balance running through your life at all times.
So I guess all I am trying to say is that it's all about starting to tell yourself "no more games, no more masks" it's about being "real" in every moment with yourself and the people around you and I know that the relationship I have with myself, family and friends is a lot more honest and fulfilling.
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