Tag: yoga teacher

How Teaching Helped me Regain my Confidence…

How Teaching Helped me Regain my Confidence…

Less than two weeks ago, I was coming off a high of teaching my VERY first Corepower class and found myself preaching to my mom about confidence. In that moment, I DID feel confident. The class was a rush of magical energy, nervousness, excitement, and pure adrenaline. I had just finished teaching my first class, without f***ing it up…which believe me, came as a surprise since leading up to that point, I was bottling up a lot of self-doubt. Anyway, back to this conversation with my mom. She’s beautiful, looks like she could be 30 years old, incredibly creative, and is an entrepreneur – yet she has little confidence in herself. Why is it that we women constantly feel like we’re not good enough? I hear it all of the time, “confidence is the best accessory”. Even though I know this and believe me, I try to fake it until I make it, but some days, I find myself hiding behind my hair or an oversized sweater. I find myself hunched over, rather than standing tall. I put earphones in and avoid eye contact. Why is it that I do these things? What is it in these moments that make me feel less confident in myself? Sometimes it’s the comparison trap, whether that be from social media, TV, magazines, etc. Sometimes it’s because I’m wearing sweats and no makeup. Sometimes it’s because I feel “soft and bloated” after a weekend of overindulging. All of these reasons come down to appearance.

How can we push past the idea that appearance = confidence? Well, this brings me back to that post-teaching high. I’m not saying everyone needs to go out and teach a class. But a BIG area of insecurity for me has always been public speaking and putting myself out there, because ultimately I felt insecure about myself. Does this come as a surprise to you? If so, I GET why. I’ve had a blog since college now where I post pictures of myself, my food, and my everyday life through Instagram story.  Though it may appear like I have my shit together….believe me when I say, that’s not always true. For example, I STRUGGLED big time when Instagram story started to become a thing. I was so used to hiding behind my food pictures that having to talk to a video and a large audience terrified me. What would people say about me? What if they don’t like what I’m posting? What if they don’t like my personality? What if I’m not looking my best? In a way, Instagram story helped to push me out of my comfort zone and get over caring what people would THINK of me.

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In December of 2016, I went off and did a 17 day intensive yoga teacher training. I hadn’t gone into it with the intention of teaching. Within the first day or so there, we had to get up in front of everyone and teach a small part. I didn’t know what I was doing. I felt awkward, uncomfortable, nervous, terrified…all of the above. You could tell I was not confident in my own body. Yet, no one judged me. Luckily, I was in a group of the MOST supportive people. It was never a competition. We were all here to improve and we all had a personal reason as to WHY we were here, in this space, pushing our limits, together. By the end of the 17-days I was a different person. I wasn’t perfect by any means, but I was WAY more confident leaving there than I had been when I arrived.

Beginning in October 2017, I had my very first Corepower yoga sculpt teaching training. For those of you who are not familiar with sculpt, it’s a heated, fast-paced, music centric, high-energy, yoga meets strength training class. It is VERY different than yoga, but has always been a practice that I’ve loved because it truly makes working out FUN. I’ll be honest, before signing up for this, I never thought I could get up there and teach a class like this. Just as teaching yoga finally became comfortable for me, sculpt brought on a new element. People come to this class to get a hard, FUN 60 minute workout in. But just as I threw myself into yoga training, I figured why not, let’s test my limits once again. Though I tend to sign up for these types of things with a lot of doubt, I do it because I KNOW this is the only way I’ll ever keep improving. I love challenging myself and getting out of my comfort zone. This drive is what helps to build my confidence. When I get into something that makes me uneasy, but come out on the other side successful, that is where I begin to see my confidence shine through. It has absolutely nothing to do with looks. It’s finding something that both excites you but scares you at the same time. It’s challenging yourself to be the best version of YOU.  That’s when and where I’m the MOST confident.

Finding CONFIDENCE can be different for everyone. What I’ve found in the past year or so, is when I put myself out there without truly giving a f*** what anyone thinks, that’s when my confidence reaches an all-time high. I’ve only taught just a few classes at this point, but already, the way I feel after a class is unlike anything I can explain. I love that I have the ability to motivate and empower this amazingly supportive community to get through 60 minutes of fricken HARD work. Had I continued doubting myself, I never would have had the opportunity to find so much joy through teaching. I can already tell that this was one of the best decisions I’ve made. I know that with each class I teach, the more confidence I’ll find. Teaching has given me the confidence to OWN who I am. My at home yoga practice has given me the confidence to feel beautiful in my own body and fight that negative talk. My blog has given me the confidence to let my creative side run wild and free. Living a healthy lifestyle has nourished my body and enables me to feel glowing in my own skin. These are just a few things I’ve learned along the way that have helped to build my confidence. I know there will still be days of doubt and insecurity, but already, those days seem few and far between compared to how I was feeling just a few years back.

My challenge to you? Go after something that you’ve always been drawn to, but at the same time, find terrifying. The accomplishment you feel at the end of whatever journey that may be is MAGICAL and so incredibly gratifying. That exact moment is where you’ll find the most confidence.  

That time I traveled to Mallorca, Spain for my 200HR Yoga Teacher Training…

That time I traveled to Mallorca, Spain for my 200HR Yoga Teacher Training…

Hello Friends and Happy New Year!

First off, I’d like to apologize for the lack of posts this past month, but I’ve been in a whirlwind of activities since the start of December. Obviously, the one that most stands out as reflected in my title was my 200HR Yoga Teacher Training that took place in Mallorca, Spain over an intensive 17 days. There’s SO much I could share with you on this training, but I’m going to do my best to keep it as short as possible, so let’s give this a go.

To rewind just a bit, there was a moment sometime in mid-September when I realized my love for yoga had reached a certain point and my interest in furthering my practice was sparked. Since graduating college just over three years ago, I had picked up yoga and established my own self-practice at home. I hoped that by incorporating yoga into my routine, I’d see less injuries from running and working out. At the time, I only saw yoga as an alternate form of stretching and injury prevention that would allow me to continue running the long distances 365 days a year. Little did I know, that physical aspect was just a SMALL part of what yoga truly is.

Back to that September day, I made the commitment that I’d look into completing a yoga teacher training sometime in the next year. To be honest, I wasn’t necessarily 100% sold on teaching yoga, I truly wanted to do this for myself. I saw it as an opportunity to be in the present moment away from the hustle and bustle, grow, get to know myself, push boundaries, get out of my comfort zone, and of course, further and deepen my practice both mentally, physically, and spiritually. The idea of teaching yoga and running my own class at the time was actually terrifying to me since I never really saw myself as a teacher. Anyway, after only a few google searches and scrolls through bookyogaretreats, I stumbled upon the most fitting yoga teacher training in Mallorca, Spain. I can’t quite put my finger on what it was about this particular training, but I just knew it was the one and without little time to waste, I quickly applied and was accepted soon after.

Fast forward to December 1st, the day of our arrival. After over 13 hours of traveling, my anxiety and fear was through the roof. Between traveling on my own to a foreign country, meeting 27 other people from around the world, submerging myself in a truly INTENSIVE program (I mean physically, emotionally, mentally, all of above), and being completely in the unknown, I was no longer in control. I realized quickly I had to let go of my fears and just be in the present moment. Though I knew this was the approach I HAD to take, it certainly took a few days to accept and surrender to the program, be OK with the variety of emotions that overcame myself, and lastly, trust that we were in the amazing hands of our teachers.

I’ll be honest, the first few nights were definitely a struggle. I kid you not, I texted Justin after the first night “I MISS YOU SO MUCH!!!” and his response was “Babe, it’s only been a day…you have 17 more to go.” HAHA. Luckily, it only took a few more days (those of which were probably the hardest), to settle in and make friends. Fortunately enough, making friends was the easy part. I can barely put into words how truly amazing and kind-hearted everyone was from the very first second we all met. It was clear we were all here at this training for a reason. As we got to know one another, we all seemed to be at different cross-roads in our lives, but there was one thing we all knew for sure, and that was that we had set out to complete our yoga teacher training and somehow ended up on this beautiful little island off of the coast of Spain to achieve this goal together. Having this support system throughout the program was paramount in getting through the various emotions, challenges, fears, unknowns, excitements, and joy that each day had to bring.

Between 4 hours of yoga a day, to adventuring off through the trails that lined the coast, to meditating under the full moon while watching shooting stars fire past us, to running our very first yoga class, to practicing acro/partner yoga on the beach, to devouring homemade vegan meals daily, and to being vulnerable and opening our hopes and dreams up to one another…this experience was truly life changing. My expectations coming into this were completely naive. I assumed I’d come home nailing a handstand and adding hundreds of new asanas to my “toolkit” but what I ended up getting out of this program was SO much more.

We learned the history, philosophy, and foundations behind yoga. We learned about anatomy, cueing, safety, and sequencing. We learned about meditation, all of the amazing health benefits that yoga and meditation could bring, and the holistic approach known as Ayurveda. We made ever-lasting friendships. We conquered so many fears and (quite literally in a small fire by the beach) let them go. But what surprised me the most, was what I learned about myself and how much I grew in just 17 days. I know I have so much more to grow and couldn’t be more excited to see where my continued yoga practice takes me and hopefully, is something that I can teach and share with others one day!

I know that may all sound sappy and cliche but it’s 100% FOR REAL. I had heard before going to my teacher training that this experience would be life changing. At the time, I just shrugged that comment aside, not thinking anything of it. But, hey, I’m here to tell ya, it’s the truth! If anyone is interested in hearing more about my experience or just has general questions regarding yoga feel free to shoot me an email at: pappascalli@gmail.com 🙂


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