Whenever I casually tell people at work that I’m starting classes again, those who don’t know me have asked, “Oh, are you getting your MBA?” My response: “No, I’m not interested in getting my MBA. I’m beginning a year-long yoga teacher training program.” The usual response back: “Oh, that’s nice.”
This happened to me again today. Sigh. I’m confident that some — perhaps many — people in my corporate work world view this venture as a “cool hobby” rather than a vocational program that will ultimately prove beneficial in ways that an MBA never could. After all, I plan to treat this program with the same vigor and dedication that any MBA student would treat her courses – I just won’t end the program with a degree that should triple my salary.
I can’t impose my views on others, of course. It’s frustrating, however, to feel like something so valuable to me – and something that could prove immensely valuable to my co-workers – isn’t shown a similar respect. So it goes.
That’s one of the reasons I was so excited to meet the other 25 (or so) yoga teacher trainees tonight: I wanted to learn a bit about their backgrounds, and revel in our common enthusiasm.
At tonight’s “opening circle,” we all sat in a circle and shared our name, background and intention for the program. There were no candles or incense, no drums or guitars, no holding of the hands. (Some of this I anticipated.) What was exposed: really cool diversity in our class.
There is a husband and wife duo going through the program together. There is an ex-football player. An ex-Marine (female). A former attorney who has also planned high-profile events at the White House. A nanny. A woman who recently quit her job and spent several weeks at an ashram in India. A handful of people who are disillusioned with corporate life (but haven’t quit their jobs yet). A children’s yoga teacher. An elementary school teacher. A few recent college graduates still figuring out the career thing. And a mother and son duo – the son is in seventh grade, the youngest teacher trainee ever at Moksha.
It was intriguing to hear the little bits of life story shared by each person. I don’t remember all of the specifics, but look forward to learning everyone’s story on a deeper level in time. The common thread that strung together everyone’s intention for entering the program: a desire to help others discover a path that’s transformed each of our lives for the better.
It will be fun to watch how we all evolve over the next year.