As many of you know, I recently took the plunge and trained to become a registered yoga teacher. I’ve been doing yoga for over ten years now, but it wasn’t until recently that I decided to go down a different path on my yoga journey. While preparing myself for this next chapter, I did some serious thinking about what it means to chase your dreams. Life is short, and each day is a precious gift. If you feel that hunger, that longing to try something new, take some time to reflect and think about what you need to do to make your dream a reality.
Aside from the logistics, here are a few truths you can expect when chasing your dreams:
- You will most likely be going outside of your comfort zone. Whether it’s a tiptoe, a step, or a giant leap, going outside of your comfort zone can be, well, uncomfortable to say the least. I had never taught anything formally until teacher training, so I wasn't even sure if I’d like it—or be any good at it. It’s important to cut yourself some slack when trying something new. You will most likely slip up as you learn—we all do—and you might even question yourself. Lean on friends and family when you have doubts and remember why you started in the first place.
“As you move outside of your comfort zone, what was once the unknown and frightening becomes your new normal.” —Robin S. Sharma
- Some people won’t understand why you’re doing what you’re doing, and that’s okay. As with any decision, big or small, you will most likely have naysayers. In my case, I had an array of responses to my decision to become a yoga teacher, from “I’m so excited for you—you’re going to be a natural” to “You know the market is oversaturated, right? Seems like a waste of money to me.” Sure, teacher training is a financial investment, but for me sharing my yoga practice with others is about so much more than making a living. It’s, of course, okay—and even smart—to take varying opinions into account when making a decision, but in the end, it’s up to you. Your decision doesn’t need to make sense to everyone as long as it makes sense and is meaningful to you.
“Trust your instincts and make judgments [based] on what your heart tells you. The heart will not betray you.” —David Gemmell
- There is no “perfect time.” Life can really get away from us. It's been six years since my husband and I had our first date (six years?!?!). Time seems to fly by in an instant, and we wonder how it’s even possible. Don’t put a date stamp on chasing your dreams. It’s easy to say, “After I get that raise” or “When the kids are older,” but why put your happiness on hold? Take the time to regularly evaluate where you are in life. Is it where you thought you’d be? Is it even better? Are you happy? Don’t be intimidated to take a step toward your happiness, even if it’s a small one.
“If you wait for the perfect moment when all is safe and assured, it may never arrive. Mountains will not be climbed, races won, or lasting happiness achieved.” —Maurice Chevalier