The actual teaching part of the teacher training is kicking my butt. When it’s my turn to teach a pose or two for my fellow tts or during this weekend, our new mamas-to-be, I feel light-headed and I have a hard time hearing anything besides my heart pounding in my ears and my inner critics. Plural. There is so much internal chatter going on that I can’t even really hear exactly what is being said, however I know none of it is complimentary.
Time slows down and I’m no longer able to judge how long we’ve held each pose or if I’m talking too much or too little. Do I sound like I know what I’m talking about? Does my imagery make sense? Is my nervous energy oozing out of every pore or does it just feel like it? Are they having fun? Why aren’t I? I have fun when I take class. I love yoga so much when other people teach it, why do I struggle so much to enjoy teaching it?
Even when I’m watching the teachers before and after my poses, I have a hard time being in the moment. I’m too focused on what I feel like I’ve done well and beating myself up for anything I feel I didn’t.
To say I experience great anxiety, self-doubt and anxiety would be putting it lightly. I experience something close to dread when it’s time to teach yoga. It’s “funny” given that I teach as my chosen profession and that I truly love the teaching part of my job.
I’m watching my fellow It’s All Yoga Teacher Trainees find their teaching footing and I’m in awe. So many of them are developing their voice and confidence, taking all opportunities to teach with grace and confidence. It’s like watching a bunch of flowers sprout from bulbs in the spring.
I’m feeling the opposite about myself. The crazy thing is that the further into the teacher training, the more my anxiety grows. I feel less ready to take the reins than I did the first day when I felt my teaching experience really benefitted me. Now I feel that experience is so different that it isnt’ as applicable as I first thought it would be. In theory they are very alike, but in practice, I’m finding much less so.
I am having a hard time figuring out exactly where this all comes from. A list of possibilities include: general perfectionist tendencies, feeling like I don’t have the expertise of my teachers (or fellow tts) so why am I in the front of the room? – hello, self-doubt!, not enough time to prepare, etc.
Thanks for this…. really just thanks. <3
Tami, I’m stalking your archives.
Noticed that you used the word “dread” — I mentioned the word when Havi was here, and she created a whole Dreadful Yoga thing. Wonderful/terrible.
@leili: so much can change in a year. no longer feel the dread. sometimes i even feel – are you ready? – happy, joyful, grateful, excited.
i am intrigued about the “dreadful yoga” thing. coffee?
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Eloquently expressed my dear.
Check out “Risk and Failure in Education.” When you really give of your self, as you clearly do, you risk more than failing to teach. The dread you rightly feel is a positive indicator of the depth you bring to the task. Great teachers risk rejection of all they value; because they teach with all their heart and soul.
You’re your biggest, fattest, most critical, critic.
Your kindness comes through when you teach, your heart shines through, your INTENTION. It’s clear.
That monkey on your back needs a solid knuckle sandwich to shut it up.
You do a lovely job; you’re too hard on yourself.
BIG FAT HUGS.