After I completed two long days of teaching yoga therapy in Byron Bay, I had pause to stop and reflect on my efforts.
The night before my 14-hour teaching day, I typically had sleep difficulties, culminating in just three hours of sleep. It’s not the first time this sort of pre-teaching insomnia has occurred. Part of it has to do with what a quiet lifestyle I ordinarily have in the country contrasted with suddenly meeting 13 new students in a new venue. But I also admit to being somewhat of a perfectionist, still, after all these years. Maybe, like my American accent, I’m stuck with my attitude.
In any case, I believe this year’s crop of yoga therapy students had a good time. Any of my pre-course nerves were allayed when I dived into teaching and interacting with them.
One thing I’ve learned by now, after teaching in this particular course now for five years, is the importance of context.
What is context? I’ve heard it explained as the container that holds something – like the bowl that holds the fruit.
At the risk of being puffed up, I know a lot of stuff about the subject of yoga. In teaching yoga therapy to people who don’t have a lot of experience, I have to put all this knowledge through a funnel to give my audience the right amount of what’s useful. But, it’s the context that is most important element, i.e.: What is yoga? Why are we teaching the student or client the particular program we create? Who is this person anyway? What do we want to achieve together?
The truth is I’m still learning. Each time the teacher meets the student, the best thing that they can bring to the relationship is their presence. In that sense and to some extent, there will always be learning because, if student and teacher are in the moment, it’s a new exchange.
And perhaps that’s the very basis of a healing relationship.
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