I graduated as a yoga teacher in December last year.
My teacher had told me that I should have my first yoga class lined up when I got back home, and listening to him (instead of my fears) I contacted my local gym and scheduled two yoga classes right after Christmas.
I taught my first class five days after I got home.
I was scared, super scared.
And I knew that this would be the only way to go.
I had dreamt of becoming a yoga teacher for a long time, and I knew that I would only become one by actually facing my fears about teaching.
During my YTT, I set myself a goal to teach 70 yoga classes in the following year. A goal I felt was huge. After I taught my first two classes, as I was writing my goal down, I found the urge to change it to a 100 yoga classes, an even crazier goal. Maybe just because it was a much fancier number. Maybe because I wanted some extra challenge.
So, 100 classes it was.
One hundred classes in the year of 2017. The year I would also move to a new place and start my master’s degree.
Two classes a week starting the beginning of January.
I had no connections and I had no idea how to actually start teaching yoga.
I had taught five classes in my hometown and now moved to the capital, Reykjavík. I knew no yoga teacher, no studio owner and had absolutely no idea how to do this.
It turned out that I had also contacted the Erasmus student network while in my YTT, a network for exchange students in Icelandic universities. As a former exchange student, I wanted to be in contact with the exchange students coming to my country. A tiny voice told me to hold yoga classes for them. And the ESN absolutely loved the idea!
I taught my first class in Reykjavík in the end of January. 30 exchange students turned up! No, there was actually not enough room for 30 people in that room. Somehow, I made that work, giving my mat to somebody else and squeezing in between my students to demonstrate.
And I kept going, teaching once or twice a week, advertising my own classes for the exchange students in a local youth house.
A yoga teacher in my hometown then recommended me to a yoga studio in Reykjavík, where she did her YTT. And I went on to substitute there occasionally. I contacted one other studio and started substituting there occasionally as well.
And the biggest step I took this summer, creating a name for myself and starting my own business. In July I started offering outdoor yoga classes in a local park.
In the autumn I continued with the classes for the exchange students. 36 people showed up for the first class. No, there was actually not enough room for 36 people in that room. Somehow, that worked out as well.
Meanwhile I had my goal in mind, the crazy goal that I was afraid I would never reach.
The crazy goal that scared the hell out of me when I wrote it down into my journal in December.
When I started the classes for the exchange students I had taught five classes in total.
And on the 18th of October, as I taught a class for my wonderful exchange students, I hit the mark of 100!
Yes, two and a half months left of this year and I already reached my goal!
I did it! And I am so incredibly proud!
As it turns out, after I started teaching, creating opportunities for myself, it was much easier that I had anticipated. However, only by pushing myself like this was I able to reach the goal.
The goal scared me because I knew I would need to grow so much as a person and teacher to reach it. I knew that I would need to become a yoga teacher for real. I knew that I would need to contact different studios and get declined. And perhaps even scarier, that sometimes I would get a yes. A yes that would lead me to teach a scary first class, getting closer to my goal.
I knew that I would need to put myself out there. I knew that I would need to tell the world I was a yoga teacher, something I could barely believe when I started out. I would need to put effort in. I would need to plan my classes. And I would need to face the fear of nobody showing up. Of nobody liking my teaching style. Of being a complete failure.
The fears where endless.
And only my devoting myself to the goal of 100 classes was I able to face them. Only with that was I able to push myself to become what I knew I wanted and needed to be.
And I can tell you one thing. I am so eternally grateful to have dared to do it. I am so grateful that I pushed myself to go further. I am so grateful for everyone that showed up to my classes and for the ones that told me how much they liked my style, how much they liked my class.
I am so grateful for everyone that made this a possibility. And first and foremost, I am grateful for myself.
Because I have proved what I knew in my heart.
That I have indeed, always been a yoga teacher.
New yoga teachers, how did you get started? Did you set any goals for yourself when you started teaching?