As we come to Be Yoga’s seventh anniversary, I have quite a bit to reflect on, some great and some really hard. Most of Be’s students do not know that I took a sabbatical from managing Be Yoga from the end of December 2016 until the end of April of this year. To be incredibly honest I was completely burnt out. I was tired of caring. This is NOT good as I am someone who cares very, very deeply (maybe this was part of the problem but that is a whole other blog post). If it were not for my husband and daughter I probably would have found a hut on some island and moved in. You get the picture – I was fried. About 1.5 months into my sabbatical my mom died. This was (and still is), as you can imagine, heart wrenching. I am SO thankful that my soul had already carved out time. I was still teaching, seeing acupuncture patients but the overall pace of my existence had slowed without the business owner worry being so front and center.
I’ve always said that Be Yoga has changed my life for the better. While that is a true statement, I also had to admit to myself and my staff that Be Yoga took its toll on me. No pity party please, because what I came to realize during my time off is that much of the burden I had created myself. I spent too much time sweating the small stuff. Whereas I don’t micromanage, I still did not create enough space for my team to fully step in and own their jobs. I felt like I HAD to be the driving force at all times. I had also cultivated a work atmosphere that allowed people to not fully own their job because either I would “understand” or step in and do it. Granted at this point I had already grown leaps and bounds as a leader but I had further to go. I needed to let go completely, to then step back in with my life intact and lead from a place of trust. As I reflect, I realize that this trust comes both from me AND from having an incredible team that engenders my trust at every turn. It is always a party of at least two people each one being responsible for the whole picture.
These days many people know that I own Be Yoga and at the same time many, many students have no idea when they see me practicing or sitting on the couch at one of the studios that I am the owner. My seven year baby, Be Yoga, has grown and no longer needs me in the same ways. I’m happy to know that we both still do need each other in some ways, but it does not have to be in that overwhelming way of a newborn or toddler. Just as I say to my almost nine year old, “yes, you can ride your bike alone down the street to your friends house”, “yes, you can go to sleep away camp next year”… “Yes, Be Yoga, you have this and I trust those around you.”
As I look forward with fresh eyes and perspective, it is this ultimate trust that life is all working for me and not against me. When the inevitable challenge arises, my continued focus is to greet it and myself with compassion and grace. In my mind’s eye, I picture myself as co-creator of my life with me as co-pilot and God/ Spirit/ Goddess/ Universal Life Force, whatever you want to call the big “IT”, co-piloting right alongside me. It is that beautiful dance of active creation (doing) AND ultimate surrender (being).
So Happy Seventh Birthday, Be Yoga! We are both growing up!
PS- I am working on a book about all of this….the owning a yoga studio stuff. And now by announcing it to the world I “have” to make it happen.