In my opinion, I have the best job in the world. I’m a kids’ yoga teacher, and I have the wonderful fortune to look forward to going to “work” everyday. When was the last time you got to race around gleefully playing freeze tag (with yoga poses, of course)? The last time you danced with euphoric abandon, not because your were trying to look good, but because it feels amazing? Sang with exuberance at the top of your lungs simply for the joy of singing? Created your own yoga poses? Laughed yourself silly? Journeyed from ecstatic movement to delicious silence? These are things I get to do on a daily basis. Doing yoga with children makes my heart sing!
I’ve suffered from severe depression and anxiety since I was a child. When I found yoga as a young woman, it brought me such relief. “If only I had found yoga earlier,” I thought, “my childhood would have been very different.” And, that was it. I knew I was destined to be a kids’ yoga teacher.
I feel that the word teacher is a bit of a misnomer, really. I feel that my role is to guide children to recognize the truths that reside in themselves. I strive to empower them to listen to and trust in their inner teacher. It continually amazes me how naturally children develop self-awareness by observing their bodies and thoughts in yoga class. The children know intuitively that they feel better when they deal with challenges in a calm and patient way. Fortunately, yoga gives us practical tools how to find calm, patience and compassion in even the most difficult situations.
When children are given the opportunity to think about it and discuss it, they often come to the conclusion that being kind and loving towards themselves and others makes them happy. And, that’s what yoga’s about – finding real happiness. It’s not the fleeting kind that comes with accomplishments or acquisitions. Instead, yoga leads us to that blissful inner happiness that sticks with us no matter what. Whether you can balance gracefully in tree pose for minutes on end, or you fall out of it after just a few seconds, it doesn’t matter: It simply feels magnificent to be in this incredible body.