It was never my ambition to become a Yoga Teacher. Quite the opposite! I was defining myself as a successful career woman, having climbed the corporate ladder and leading the global HR strategy for a Fortune 100 company out of Dubai. I was focused and driven. I was resilient. I was winning. The anxiety, headaches, and heartburns were a small price to pay for the satisfaction of working 16 hours per day on shaping a company.
It is not enough to be busy. So are the ants. The question is: What are we busy about?Henry David Thoreau
At the top of my corporate career, I was on high doses of medication to be able to tolerate a hiatal hernia. I had a list of food intolerance of 3 pages. Red wine was helping me fall asleep after a long stressful day. Somehow, I was convincing myself that all this was “normal”.
My life took a U-turn when my best friend fell into a deep depression. I remembered a time when yoga had helped me overcome difficult events and suggested to practice with her. Within a few weeks, her self-confidence was rebuilding, she was becoming playful again, she was healing.
The transformation was too strong to ignore, so I decided to enroll in a therapeutic oriented Yoga Teacher Training. I cleared my schedule for the weekends and started my journey into yoga. I still didn’t want to teach, I only wanted to know.
But during a Yoga Teacher Training, you need to practice teaching… so I took a few private clients and introduced them to yoga. I could recognize myself in them: the stress causing physical pain and ailments, breathing patterns resulting in tensions and digestive issues. Just like me, they were accepting their pain as “normal”. This was an eye opener: the perfectly harmonious machine that is our body was gravely corrupted by our lifestyles, and fixing it was so easy!
The type A personality that I am led me to enroll into a second Yoga Teacher Training, and only a year in this journey, I was RYT-500 certified and teaching other teachers. I was still striving as a corporate strategist, but my passion had turned to Yoga. I wanted to keep learning more so I could help more people in more ways.
It was the hardest decision of my life, but one I will never regret: I left my job to pursue a PhD in Osteopathy, a discipline that just like yoga, studies the interconnection of the body and mind to treat the cause of pain. I moved to Bali, the Island of Gods, to dedicate myself to yoga and to the study of the human body. Today, I co-host Yoga Teacher Trainings in Bali with Upaya Yoga and Kaya Yoga, specializing in teaching yoga for depression, stress and anxiety, yoga anatomy and body alignments.
I look back to who I was not so long ago and I see a stranger. Yoga has helped me connect with my true self, live a healthy and pain-free life, and appreciate every moment, every gift that life has to give. If I keep my designer suits as a souvenir of a past life, today I cannot find greater happiness than in teaching future yoga teachers and guide them in the path of true knowledge and growth. Yoga is the greatest gift to offer, and no corporate job can replace the satisfaction of witnessing the transformation of my students through yoga.