Recently I had a teaching audition and I didn’t get the job. Instead I got another opportunity: a month to work towards it.
We always grow from setbacks, but often only in hindsight. What if we draw from challenges while we’re in them? Is there more to learn? I vowed to try.
I’d failed my audition for three reasons:
- I didn’t follow the studio’s structure.
- I didn’t know how to prepare, so I wasn’t actually prepared.
- I lacked confidence.
I made it my fulltime job to overcome the first two missteps:
- I stuck to the studio’s structure like glue. I redesigned a class I was certain adhered to their format.
- I practiced 15-20 times until my body knew the sequence without hesitation.
- I took classes at the studio nearly every day.
- I found an effective way to prepare.
- I wrote what I wanted to say in class — from my first word to my last.
- I read that script aloud, with my playlist going on my computer and my phone recording, everyday.
- Then I let go of the script and continued this exercise everyday.
- I listened to the recordings constantly.
- I practiced to the recording.
I began to feel truly prepared.
I addressed the third issue — confidence — with faith in the process. I knew I had to “show up and suck” but I made sure to learn immediately from sucking.
- I meditated and honored that I do trust the process by keeping up my practice.
- I practiced Karma Yoga. I volunteer at The Sivananda Center every week and clean the space with reverence for everything that lineage and others continue to offer me.
I taught twice per week and took away as much as possible:
- I made sure there was someone to hold me accountable in every class. I invited friends, family members and other teachers and asked for their feedback.
- I reflected on each class immediately.
I’m excited to say that the studio offered me a teaching position three weeks later.
We can see some things only with the benefit of hindsight. But most of what I learned — and the things that helped me get this position — I learned because I stayed attuned during the challenge.
In hindsight, I recognize that as yoga teachers this is our ultimate job.