The other day, on the train from San Diego to Los Angeles, the man who sat next to me on the train asked if I’m a yoga teacher.
Perhaps because I tend to always look like I’m going to or coming from a yoga class.
Although I have completed several advanced yoga teacher trainings, I haven’t yet completed the 200 hour training required to teach in a studio.
I hedged a little bit, not wanting to mislead.
Later, I realized I had shortchanged myself.
The truth is that I do teach yoga. Maybe not the physical practice in a studio. But yoga has 8 levels, and the physical practice is only level 3.
I teach a specific form of yoga called Off-the-Mat Yoga: how to take what you do on the mat and integrate it into your life.
Whether it’s yoga, trapeze, trampoline, personal development concepts, or another context, I teach people how to take concepts from one place and integrate them into life in other places.
Seeing how I sold myself short on my identity in that moment helped me steel the resolve not to allow this to happen again.
It’s not the first time this concept has come up for me. It arises any time someone asks me the question I dread most:
What do you do?
I dread this question because I know that people expect me to answer with a role.
We live in a culture that likes to define us by roles.
Because it’s the most simple approach, I typically answer “what do you do?” with the role descriptor: Real estate broker. Coach. Previously a lawyer.
I cringe every time I do this. I know that how others understand those roles differs significantly from how I describe what I actually do. And those descriptors don’t come close to explaining what I do.
In the 7 weeks since I came out to California, I have I led hundreds of people across a firewalk. I completed a yin yoga teacher training and a reiki training. And I’ve offered coaching and wisdom to clients and strangers.
It’s time for me to step into my identity of who I have always been and who I am becoming.
Teacher. Healer. Intuitive. Creative. Strategist. Catalyst. Divine-femme bad ass.
These are not instead of the other parts of me.
They are equal to the other parts of me.
They are all me in my power. All parts of me when I am fully embodied in my truth. When I am in flow.
Out culture creates rules that we must pick a lane. If you want to be in multiple lanes, you can only be in one at a time. This is bullshit. I’m done with those rules. Killing them off.
The roles I play do not define what I do. Who I am, what I do, and how I serve transcends traditional roles.
I am not “picking a lane.”
I am erasing the lines on the road. I am taking the whole highway.