Sometimes there's no higher form of self care than simply acknowledging your little (and big) successes, giving yourself a pat on the back and feeling proud of yourself. I feel that way after this week. I realized this week how much I've changed and grown in 3 years time alone.
Yoga Teacher Training happened 3 years ago this July. That was a giant step for me. So far out of my comfort zone doesn't even begin to explain it. It was ballsy too. I had practiced yoga at home for years in the safety and comfort of our living room or the back yard. It made me feel strong and healthy, it challenged me, and it was so much beyond the physical poses that I was discovering and eventually wanting to learn more about. But before I decided at the beginning of 2015 that I would take the giant step and enrol in YTT I had never even set foot in a yoga studio or class.
I don't know that I had a plan/goal going into it. On the first day everyone sat in a circle and we all took turns talking about why we were there. When it came my turn I think I said something about just wanting to deepen my practice and learn more. Most of the other answers seemed more definite - you obviously go to YTT because you want to teach yoga. And if my goal was to learn more and deepen my practice I succeeded. It was a difficult 30 days. But regardless of everything else, I'd been brave, overcome my fear of stepping out of my comfort zone and completed what I'd set out to do.
YTT gave me momentum. I never went on to teach yoga. But I did go on to practicing confidently in a studio, starting a blog, meeting new people/making new friends through social media, collaborating with super talented people, working on photoshoots, and most recently deciding that I wanted to work with flowers and then whole heartedly embracing doors that have subsequently opened. None of that would have happened without first going to Yoga Teacher Training.
I think stepping out of my comfort zone in the form of YTT was the first step in broadening my horizons. In gaining confidence and feeling brave. It's been like working a muscle for me (ironically). I would have had an anxiety attack three years ago had anyone suggested that I just go for it. That I register a business, get an account with a floral supply company and do a pop up at a shop as stunning as Fieldstudy. Instead I've been able to embrace it. And feel really really proud of what I accomplished, the beautiful arrangements I created, and the first step in this direction that I took.
I think it's easy to forget to acknowledge our efforts. To move onto the next step without recognizing the first. To feel as though it's jinxing something or being really full of yourself to feel proud and successful. But celebrating the little things is what life is about. And feeling proud and successful is what gives us more strength to move onto and accomplish even bigger things. So, I've taken a few moments this week to reflect, to feel proud of myself, and to even say it out loud. And I know that practicing that will reflect in the next step (and the next and the next). Because not only did I accomplish something, but I acknowledged it, and have honoured myself for it.
Photos by Peyton Rainey