Day 1: All About The Intention

Today confirmed that I made the right decision in signing up for my 200-hour yoga teacher training. My instructor is full of knowledge and spirit, genuinely excited to be working with my 19 classmates and myself so intensely over the next four weeks. And my classmates… well, there is no better group of students for me to join in this journey.

During our personal introductions, we went around the room and shared our names, something awesome about ourselves, and what was bringing us to the training. I was overwhelmed by the number of people who are undergoing career transitions like myself, leaving jobs that made them miserable behind for this path toward a personal transformation. I was also moved by those who are coping with severe emotional trauma and find yoga to be one of the best ways to face their demons. Some are reinventing themselves for the first time while others are on their fourth go-round, but we are all there in the same room on the same page unified by similar purposes. We are all working at it together.

Today left me thinking about how every single one of us struggles with something — loss, grief, guilt, anger, pain, failure, fear, you name it. And when a group of 20 strong individuals chooses the same method through which to try and find true and right paths for themselves, it really is a beautiful thing. Conversely, I feel quite sad for the people we all know who never seek or experience various levels of enlightenment and instead accept their dissatisfaction as the way life has to be. Because it most certainly doesn’t.


When we were asked in our asana practice this morning to set an intention for ourselves, I decided to set one for my entire training. I thought back to a particular line from Zadie Smith’s Swing Time┬áthat I read recently: “Sometimes I wonder if people don’t want freedom as much as they want meaning.” In recent months, I’ve been so focused on freeing myself from my negative forces in my life that I didn’t think to contrast that liberty with true meaning. What is the significance of this empty space now? What is my new purpose? So throughout this month, my intention (and my mantra) will be simple: seek meaning.

I don’t know exactly what I’ll find with this focus in mind, but I can already envision how much room for personal growth exists in this next month so long as I leave my mind open to it. So that’s exactly what I’m going to do.


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