At the beginning of April, I started doing core work everyday.
This isn’t necessarily a huge deal for me. I love doing core work. I always have. Core work can be really fun and almost immediately satisfying, so you don’t really need to do a lot to feel like you’re actually doing something.
I started doing it everyday because in my online yoga studio, our pose of the month for April is plank pose, so naturally all of the classes I taught involved some serious core and shoulder work. And on off days, I had challenged myself to do 40-50-60: 40 push-ups, 50 weighted squats, and 60 sit-ups.
You can probably guess one of the more obvious observations I’ve made.
My core muscles feel stronger.
More specifically, I can access my core muscles in poses and transitions that I might not have intentionally felt them before.
It’s pretty incredible to feel more core muscles work in poses I have never felt them engage in before. I also love how I can control transitions from pose to pose because I can access my core muscles while moving instead of just when I am more stationary.
All of that is just the physical stuff, though.
There’s something else that I became really aware of, too and it didn’t happen on my yoga mat.
I realized that I was trying to be something and someone I am not.
My therapist gave me this gift during our last teletherapy session, but I thought it only applied to motherhood.
She said, “you cannot be the mom you want to be right now.”
She was talking about how I am trying to be everything and do everything in all of the ideal ways as a mom and a business owner while soloparenting my kids during this global health crisis.
And she’s right.
As I was scrolling through instagram the other day, I realized that it was true of me as a yoga teacher, too.
I had landed on the post of a teacher I like, but kind of also hate.
I know, I know…that sounds really strong. It’s more jealousy than hate. I actually like a lot of what she posts.
I like how she pushes back against conventional yoga wisdom — I do that, too.
And I love how creative and often unconventional some of her sequences are. I definitely think mine are, as well.
I’ve also watched her rise in popularity in the past 2 years of following her while I have not, which is massively frustrating to me.
Writing it out like this makes me feel a little embarrassed. I mean, it shouldn’t matter how popular someone is or isn’t on instagram or facebook or youtube, right? This isn’t high school.
But that’s how social media feels like most of the time. One massive high school that everyone attends. So naturally it brings out the teenager in me.
So this one day, as I’m scrolling through the hallways of instagram, I landed on her post and realized that I am not her, but I’ve been trying to be her for the past 2 years.
And I can’t be.
I can’t and shouldn’t try to be someone I’m not.
For the past 2 years, I’ve been trying to replicate what she does in the hopes that it would get me the same visibility and appreciation she has.
And spoiler alert:
Truthfully, I can’t do what she does.
While I don’t know how much disposable time she has, I know that as a mom of 3 kids, I don’t have the time to edit videos for instagram everyday with captions explaining the actions in the sequence.
Even while writing this blog, I’ve been interrupted no less than 10 times.
One kid stabbed the other in the neck with the eraser end of a pencil. The youngest needed to nurse and have her diaper changed. My oldest decided that this moment was the perfect one to start singing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, loudly and repetitively.
All 3 of my kids tend to invade my mat space, not just when I practice but when I teach.
If you’re in my online membership, you might hear me tell my daughter to take the scissors away from the baby because she found them and is trying to eat them. I might have to stop and nurse the baby and talk through the sequence instead of do it with you.
Motherhood is woven into my business as much as it is my life.
So while it drives me nuts and makes things infinitely harder, I wouldn’t change being a mom.
I feel this deep in the core of my being.
Connecting to my physical core everyday helps me stay centered in who I am. Core work everyday refines my awareness, pulling my focus into my center so I can operate from a place of deeper connection and consciousness.
It helps me know myself better.
While that might sound nuts, I also know it’s true.
So as I looked at her post, I realized that I can’t be the kind of yoga teacher I wish I could be so that I can be one of the cool, popular kids in the high school cafeteria that is instagram.
I can only be the kind of teacher that I am.
And at the end of the day, I like who I am as a yoga teacher.
My classes are creative and dynamic. The sequences I create are unique, intelligent, and intentional. I don’t do anything just to do it. Every pose, every action is done for a specific reason. I laugh at my own jokes, I don’t play music while I teach, and respect the lineage of yoga, honoring tradition, while putting my own spin on the poses I teach.
I am a different teacher than she is. While there are certainly similarities, my style is very different. And I am ok with that. I might never be as popular as she is but from here on out, I will stop comparing myself to her because it serves no one, least of all me.
If you want to work your core muscles everyday to have both physical and energetic revelations, you can join me for my CORE CONNECTION CHALLENGE. It’s totally free and we start on Monday, May 4th. Get more info and sign up here.
You can also get my FREE class Daily Core: 5 poses for Strength, Stability, and Healthy Movement. Click here for this free class.