"For the longest time fear was driving my life"

"For the longest time fear was driving my life, primarily fear of the unknown and failure. I worked very hard to line everything up the way I thought it should be in order to live a secure and successful life. As the years went and my financial security grew, my fear didn't subside, instead, I began to fear that I would be stuck in a job and a life that didn't make me happy, that didn't excite me, that made me dread the beginning of the week. I didn't know how to get out of this world that I had created for myself, a world that I thought I truly wanted. As I have progressed in my practice and have begun to become a part of the amazing yoga community, I see that it's not impossible to be excited about what I am doing. That I can both have purpose in my career and live the day to day. I have no doubt that the adventure I am embarking on will have it's ups and downs, but at least I know that I am in the drivers seat and that, come what may, I am giving it my all. I don't fear failure, because even if my plans don't play out as I expect them to, I will meet people and do things that perhaps send me in another direction, one that I never would have thought possible without taking the steps to climb out of my box and try something scary and new. While fear can sometimes be a backseat driver, I finally feel in control, excited, and hopeful for the unknown and I welcome it with open arms." -Nicole H

"Whose Driving this Thing?"

"Whose Driving this Thing?"
-Ella Luckett


Your on a bus and it's jerky. Speeding up too fast, slamming on the breaks. Your holding on for dear life as you apologize for falling on the person next to you. You can't help but get mad at the driver, the faceless back of a head sitting several yards ahead of you causing tension all over your body. And then you remember to have compassion....  You think, maybe the driver had a hard day, or is behind schedule and doesn't want to get fired. You also remember how lucky you are to be going where ever it is your going. Suddenly your body releases and eases into the turns. Your feet get rooted and the pushes and pulls don't toss you around as much.
Now your driving your own car. It's a long distance to your destination. You start to wish you could stretch your legs, read a book, or take a nap and wake up at your destination. Control is good, but this road is tedious.

Think for a moment of the journey from point a to b as the span of your life, and your body the vehicle.

We have to use the mind like a car engine. It behooves us to look at our surroundings take in the sensory input and make decisions based on what the powerful mind can deduce. Our heart feeds a desire to go somewhere, we have the means to make it happen... or so we think.
But we also have to know the limits of that game. The person in the car still has no control over lights, traffic, accidents and road blocks. It's the person who gets attached to their own control who gets road rage. A self destructive energy that harms no one but the driver. (Well, possibly others if it gets out of control). So like the car driver, enjoy the powerful use of your own will, but know it's limits. Yoga is about practicing the flexibility of switching gears when necessary, to give up your ego and personal desires to the divinity of the universe. A practice we call ishvara pranidad.

So how do you know when to drive hard with your will, or take a breath and evoke trust and release. The answer according to yoga, is svadyaya, the practice of self study. As yogis we are utilizing the tools of monks and sages to contend with a life that's not at all monk like. We are living a life where we still entertain desires and attachment. We can't just completely detach and let go, lest we lose our dreams, goals and passions.

I am a passionate, creative person. Even as a child, my mother describes me as having been"willful."  I couldn't be rushed, I had to do things myself and I always had a vision.  To me, this is the"stuff" of life!  But left unchecked it's also the source of stress and anxiety stemming from over attachment to the results.

This over attachment is what caused the road rage like, self destructive force, to collapse my dance career before it ever began. I didn't have the tools to trust keep flowing, when faced with road blocks. I didn't have the perspective that faith fills in the gaps where the will has no power. I couldn't stand that other people's judgement dictated my destiny. The lack of control destroyed me. I had to leave, I was in so much pain. As the buddah said, the attachment was the source of my suffering.

It wasn't until I find yoga that I learned to ride the bull if my own creative life force. I learned mobility between manifesting passionate intention, and letting go in moments when I had no control. I learned when to push myself forward and when to let the winds of nature fill my sails to move me forward. This playful bounce between tapas (devoted fire) and ishvara pranidad is the key to a fully lived life, following your hearts desire, but not suffering under the weight of its potential attachment.  The only way to know which of these to evoke at any given moment is through the practice of svadyaya, self study.

So keep the fire, but when suffering comes, breath, look inside and ask: are you doing this for yourself? For your ego? Or are you in service to the world? A higher force of nature will either carry you over the wide river, or show you that turning a corner to walk beside it brings you everything you didn't know you desired. 

Embedded within your own will is an atunement with a higher flow. Joining that higher flow brings more riches than your small self could have imagined.

Despite leaving my first dream behind, I never list the intention to have a fulfilling career. An attachment of sorts, but I had to completely let go of what I "thought" that should be. Now I have a career in yoga where I not only get to use my body for self expression, I get too touch people's lives in a powerful way that uses not just my body, but my mind as well.  In this profession I get too constantly learn, I get too use my voice both spoken and written. What seemed like a dead end turned into a better use of my talents than I could have myself imagined.

This decade long lesson is one I try to use now too shorten suffering time. When the passions of the heart reach an impassable block, I'm automatically triggered to breath, let go, and remember joy for what I have. These are the moments the universe has a better idea for me than my own. This is when I remember I'm part of a bigger picture and not the sole driver of this vehicle. 

So whose driving your motion today? Your heart and soul, ego and will, emotions and reactions, or the divine highest spirit itself?  All are licensed drivers but none should have sole control over you.

The ultimate driver is the omnipresent guide you connect with through a meditative practice. The one who switches seamlessly between the forces of the body mind and soul. This all knowing nature banks the curves, taps into the current, and flows with life in all its grand momentum.


"Teacher training at Jai revolutionized my practice"

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“Teacher training at Jai revolutionized my practice. I have not reached enlightenment, but in ten weeks of Teacher Training ...I was really allowed the space to sit with myself. The philosophical yogic teachings have been ingrained into my being. My practice also transformed... thanks to the focus on proper alignment and flow of energy within the asanas. We were given the tools as both teachers and students...” ~Chelsey K

"I am so Lucky to have taken the Yoga Teacher Training at Jai!"

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“I am so Lucky to have taken the Yoga Teacher Training at Jai! The training is very well designed to graduate with confidence and grace! The vibe was amazing and the size of the group was perfect, we all got good amount of attention. I feel very well nourished from our training and excited to start sharing my practice with the world!” ~Dina L

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“From the moment I walked into my first class, I knew it was the right place to do my Teacher Training. The teacher training exceeded my expectations and gave me a far broader knowledge base than I could have hoped for. It provided a nurturing atmosphere while pushing me to expand beyond what I felt were my limitations. Teacher Training at Jai taught me to embrace life” ~Claire T

"one of the best decisions I've made"

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“I had been thinking about yoga teacher training for years, but the right time and place eluded me. After taking Ella's class at Jai, I knew I had found the studio for me. It just felt right, and it turned out to be one of the best decisions I've made. ...it brought light to my life, and deepened my practice in a beautiful way. I left each day of training feeling like I was on a path to something amazing. ~ Erin B

"my biggest accomplishment in life so far..."

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“completing my 200hr teacher training at Jai Yoga has been my biggest accomplishment in life so far... As I began to lean in to the journey, I felt a shift as the wisdom I was acquiring put my life into perspective. I have grown into a richer, more intuitive version of myself.” ~Ashley M

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“this experience was AMAZING! An amazing group that really appreciated and supported each other, as well as a great leader to bring us all together... I feel stronger than ever, mind, body and spirit, having been through this training.” ~Teresa T

"I walked away with knowledge..."

“A course so entirely practical, truthful, challenging and engaging, both physically and philosophically…  I gained that sense of quiet confidence that I was pursuing and I walked away with knowledge of my Self that I will carry with me for the rest of this life.” ~Allison R