This is the year when I decided that I wanted to be a yoga teacher.
I did consider doing Level 1 back then, but I felt I wasn’t ready. In addition, they didn’t offer a 200 hour training back then, instead - in order to get a 200 hour Yoga Alliance certification, one needs to complete Level 1 & 2 and Art of Assisting, which all have separate training dates, held in the USA and is a hefty investment of around US$10K excluding flight costs.
Thus I did my 200 hr Yoga Alliance accredited Power Vinyasa teacher training with Power Living, Sydney in 2014.
3 years later, Baptiste Yoga unexpectedly became a recurrent theme in my life.
It all started being a Yes to Level 1 because it was finally being held outside of the American soil- in the UK. I've got family there - so I CAN!
The eggs fell into place mid year when I agreed to take over Baptiste Power Flow classes at Alpha Balance, where I met the lovely Natasha Benson, the founder and herself is a Baptiste-Inspired Teacher.
Then I met my soul sister, Trish Corley of New Angle Yoga who had just moved to Singapore and is a certified Baptiste Yoga Teacher, and with whom, I’ve had lots of chats and adventures with.
The Baptiste magic kept on coming - my teacher, Tryphena Chia flew in to Singers in June to lead a weeklong Baptiste program and the cherry on the cake is that Baron himself came to Singapore in August! Whoah!
That was the highlight of my year - ME meeting Baron in person and assisting him in the Lululemon "Powered By Art" event. (Click HERE to read all about it!)
What stuck with me was the idea of WHERE CAN I CREATE POSSIBILITY WHERE IT DOES NOT YET EXIST?
I went into Level 1 with no expectations, at least that’s what I wrote on my application form.
That’s a LIE!
I had expectations from the start, from what I’ve been told about the program.
There was supposed to be past midnight days but there were no late nights. We slept early and we ate good food, really good food.
Ps. I found later that this is unusual of the program. Usually the number of participants are in the hundreds, and here we were, only 50. So I'm pretty lucky for this smaller group experience.
I had this idea too that everyone who came are experienced yoga teachers but I forgot that not everybody has aspirations to be a yoga teacher
In fact, we showed up because we were inspired by the Baptiste methodology and that there's something inside of us that desire change.
We are all the same human beings with different stories but same fears - that we are not good enough, of being judged, not having enough money, not being lovable that no one likes me, of being a failure, of being a bad person, being laughed at etc.
WhatThe whole 8 days was an emotional and physical roller coaster. I explored my fears.
I discovered what was possible if I confronted my fears - what showed up was my need to be understood and to be my true self.
It happened during the “Pushing” exercise, where I was palm-to-palm with a partner, and I had to push her across the room whilst she resisted me. At the same time, with her as my “mirror", I had to say to "myself" what I'll never admit to others because I'm ashamed of it.
I thought I was angry with my parents. So the first words of anger was to them. I was sad, I was angry, frustrated, overwhelmed.
Suddenly a memory popped up - I was very young maybe 4-5 years old, and crying in bed, being angry with God!
I WAS ANGRY WITH GOD??
I am angry with God!
Oh my God! I don’t remember when I stopped talking to him, but I do remember talking to him alot when I was younger.
I was angry with him for making me do the things I don’t want to do, and that I wished I was adopted. I felt I did not belong.
It was a revelation, and everything became clear. Not that I have the answers to all my problems, but it's just that the fog that was over my head, floated away. There's so much freedom now knowing that there’s nothing I needed to do about my anger, sadness or my feelings.
I can just be.
The lie I tell myself is I’m a bad person.
I unconsciously do things that make me look bad like I say I’m too busy, I sit on the fence and not make decisions, not spending time with sisters, hurting my friends, not being in 100% listening to mum & dad, reacting defensively, pretending I don’t care when I do care.
And unfortunately the lie will always show up because it's ingrained in me for the past 40 years. My work is to notice when it does come up, and give it up.
I cannot change who I was but I can practice change to be the person I want to be by changing the words I say to myself.
But you know what’s the joke?
I’m not bad person. I’m good and kind-hearted and I've lots of love to give to the world. I may have done a bad thing by lying and it may well be blasphemy to say the things I say about my religion and God, but my heart is good.
I'd like to think that God is all-forgiving and I know he loves as much as he loves everyone of all religion.
What is possible after Level 1
On our last day, we were asked to journal "Out of my Level 1 experience, I am committed to......." and we wrote a list of anything and everything that is possible if we could not and would not fail!
Re-reading my journal, 1 year later, I realised I have ticked off almost ALL of my POSSIBILITY LIST.
Be more involved in the Baptiste Yoga Singapore community
Teach more Baptiste Yoga community classes
Bring Art of Assisting to Singapore (June 2017)
Level 2 in NY (July 2017)
Teach a Lululemon community class (Aug 2017)
Be a certified Baptiste Yoga Teacher (Nov 2017)
Lead a charity class (Raised funds for Breast Cancer Foundation and Pimp My Tuk Tuk)
Ask Thom to marry me (He asked me instead in Aug 2017 in romantic Paris!)
Explore a different way of relating to mum and dad
Open a studio and create a space where people can connect, experience and be supported.
Live in a beautiful house with 3 kids
I’ve done more in fact - assisted New Angle Yoga in the teacher training program, created a Baptiste Yoga Asia FB page, as Baptiste Yoga is now represented in both Hongkong and Vietnam! I am mentoring a 2nd year graduate from the Africa Yoga Project.
My WHY is that I want to be of service to others and I want to share my Love of this Magical practice to anyone and everyone! I am amazed how much possibilities are out there, if I just put it out there.
Money is the root of all successes (and suffering and failures), and I’m spending my life savings on my passion. I’ve never been passionate about anything ever; and if I ever did, I admit that it was always half-hearted, because I wasn’t confident I will succeed.
But Baptiste Yoga gave me possibilities ; anything is possible if you come from a place of anything is possible. AND you got to DO THE WORK!
My new way of being is of LOVE
I give up my lie of I'M bad