1. Sva Dharma
When I first started teaching Yoga, there was very little in my area. I live 40 miles west of Chicago and while there were classes and workshops in the City, there was not much out here. I knew that I didn't know a lot, but someone had to start teaching locally.
I felt the same thing after training with Yogarupa. People were teaching asana and some pranayama, but no one was teaching meditation or how to put all of them together to create self-empowerment and move toward consciousness. I felt compelled to teach ParaYoga, even though my classes weren't advertised as such.
Now that Yoga has become so much about fitness and exercise, I am propelled by that same energy. The science of Yoga needs to be taught. I believe it's necessary to set a high(er) bar—set high standards, so that we don't become complacent. I know that there are many people who wish to look more deeply into the practice and want more from the practice than a "yoga butt."
I am a very shy and introverted person. In my professional career I was a marketing consultant and worked in the background. I was never the person making the presentation in the front of the room, I was researching the presentation and helping to put it together in the back of the room (or behind the curtain). In order to teach, I had to put myself in front of the room and make eye contact. It was terrifying at first.
Also, I kept hearing that one couldn't make a living teaching Yoga. I had to overcome that model in order to keep working. I kept putting myself in more situations to teach than I could have ever imagined I would have had the nerve to step into.
These days I train students to become Yoga teachers. I tell them that I have the best job in the world and feel immensely blessed.
I have seen so many of my students go on to become Yoga teachers. Even before becoming a teacher trainer myself, I felt a very large number of my students went on to become teachers. From there, many have gone on to become Ayurvedic practitioners as well, or Therapeutic Yoga teachers. I have witnessed so much growth and expansion in my Community it's both humbling and inspiring at the same time.
I've witnessed so many students stepping into larger roles and growing more than they thought possible. The largest hurdle always seems to be one's ability to "see" or visualize themselves as teachers, healers, leaders. The teachings of ParaYoga tell us we are destined for these things.
Currently I am reviewing and studying "Living Tantra" from Pandit Rajmani Tinduit of the Himalayan Institute. I am interested in the historical perspsective of Yoga. How we got to where we are today in the West. I would like to incorporate this into my teaching more, including my teacher training programs. I am also developing a college level credit course on the teachings. I currently teach Yoga at a Community College where they are very open to this, and hope to take it on to some 4-year colleges.
I am reading and following the practices in "The Four Desires" so that I can carry this work out further to a larger audience, through workshops and trainings. Encouraging my students to "be BIG," think big, dream big. It is time to move from using our practice to heal ourselves, to using our practice to heal our world.
"Tricia is a true yogi, teaching, practicing and living from her heart, with humility, depth and a twinkle in her eye."
~ Barbara (BJ) Sadtler
When I first started practicing and teaching Yoga, I was a single Mom. I had very little money and time for anything for myself. I always was panicked about the money and keeping up my own practice, and yet somehow I found the time and the money always showed up when I needed it. The picture of my life didn't reflect what I saw or read about coming out of California or New York (or Yoga Journal). My life wasn't glamorous and neither was I. I wasn't all that flexible and didn't have time to practice for hours each day. I was so fearful!
My Mother was an amazing support. She helped with babysitting and money when I needed it. It took me a long time to finish all of my modules, but ultimately it was perfect. I consider myself a slow learner, so going slower allowed me time to integrate each training and use the practices for myself and with my students before moving on to the next one. It unfolded perfectly. It allowed me to see how the Universe works with us perfectly to support our dreams and passions, when we are willing to commit to the work, whatever that is. It's fascinating to step back and acknowledge the process of reaching our goals/desires (even when we don't always know what they are).