Back in 2002 my life was all about busy schedules, deadlines, grooming, and a lot of travel! I was flying for an airline and whenever I could find some time I walked the runway as a showstopper. It was exciting and hectic, and no doubt there was a lot of socialising and travel. I always enjoyed meeting people and connecting with them. It is something I still enjoy, but the difference in Me Then and Me Now is that no matter the circumstances and challenges, I am able to shift the focus inward, and instead of trying to control what’s around me, I work towards deepening the connection with myself. Isn’t this what attracts us to Yoga?
The magic worked on me almost instantly. I had decided to visit a friend of mine during my stay in Mumbai. She was a regular at a local yoga studio and had a class scheduled for the day. Since I had some free time, she asked if I was interested in joining her for the Yoga class. I replied with an enthusiastic Yes! At the end of my first Yoga session, my Master walked up to me and asked if I was interested in teaching Yoga:-)
I was pleased and surprised! My original Mumbai plan did not include a yoga class! And with that done, I was now being asked if I would like to consider it as a career path! I smiled and said, ‘No, I do not think I am ready for this.’ However, later that day I met the same Yoga Master at an evening private party I was invited to. He had got everyone’s attention by demonstrating a highly advanced yogic technique in which one could stop his heart beat for 4 to 5 minutes. He did it effortlessly and perfectly! I changed my mind then and there. I walked up to him and said ‘I would love to learn Yoga :-)’ And this is how my Yoga journey had kicked off!
The Universe Is My Big Family
What I like best about teaching Yoga is that it allows me to reach out to people and help them. As they say, ‘health is wealth’, and this is precisely what I first try and explain to my students. Yoga helps us maintain mental and physical health and with practice, we not only become healthier but also confident about ourselves. I absolutely enjoy counseling, guiding my students one-on-one, boosting their confidence, guiding them in their practice and healthy lifestyle options such as following a healthy diet.
I have been fortunate to have worked with clientele of highly diverse backgrounds. I conduct special workshops for corporates and lifestyle brands. I have conducted special Yoga training for sports persons. I also have experience with Kids Yoga and often conduct special program for kids who are suffering from mental health. I work closely with few Women Empowerment NGOs.
“The whole universe in one. There is only one Self in the universe, Only One Existence.” Swami Vivekananda.
Our Yoga Retreats are also packed as we explore various aspects of Yoga so participants can connect with themselves at a deeper level. I feel that Yoga is the best gift I have given myself and it is the best I can do for others. In the end, I feel this universe is my big family and through Yoga, I can connect to anyone and everyone at different levels.
Enjoy Your Journey
When I had embarked on this magnificent journey, I was an emotional and sensitive person who really wasn’t sure about what she wants. A little confused …yes! Not that I am not emotional or sensitive now. I am, but I see things differently. I can laugh at myself and it feels amazing! It is a way of letting go of all that which does not serve you. I feel more confident and secure in my space.
“Remember, it doesn’t matter how deep into a posture you go – what does matter is who you are when you get there.” Max Strom
So if you are looking at starting your yoga journey , remember to enjoy your Yoga journey. Yoga can be practiced by anyone, anywhere and at anytime. If you do not have enough time, then consider starting with a 20-minute daily routine. Trust me, gradually, you will manage to and you will want to spend at least 1 hour with yourself on your beautiful mat.
If your goals are fitness related, then with time your practice will give you strength, flexibility, staminal and an amazing and new found energy level! Yoga has the ability to transform your thoughts, to improve your mood, to help you sleep better and the list is endless 🙂 Of course, to begin with, you need to find a good Teacher. And after that, it is important to spend sometime in self-practice. It takes years and years to get fit and flexible, but it calls for a lot more practice and experience to learn to relax and be yourself. Having said that, don’t wait for something to happen to start Yoga, start your Yoga journey Today!
I Have No Goals
My goals for Yoga are not no longer external. What I mean is, I do not start my practice thinking that it is good for me or that I will get fitter or stronger. It has been almost 16 years of practice now. I simply practice because without it I feel I am missing Being Me or I am Incomplete without Yoga. It is a part of my day to day life. Yoga is Me Now. It is beyond everything, even beyond thoughts. I have no goals! But I do dream of yoga in mountains and food, which I love to cook!
“Put your heart, mind, intellect and soul even into your smallest acts. This is the secret of success.” Swami Sivananda.
Cooking has always been my passion. I remember when I had just started my Yoga journey, I use to cook with my Master and one day I had cooked Thai food for around 85 people! They were all my students and they loved it! I stick to healthy cooking and use techniques like baking. I also use alternatives like palm sugar, dates, ghee, cold compressed coconut oil, avocado, whole wheat, etc.. My mother and near and dear ones say that I have magic in my hands 🙂 Now, I don’t know about the magic bit but I do put in my heart and soul in cooking and feeding people. Cooking is like meditation to me, it helps me connect with myself at a deeper level. If I ever get a chance to cook for the whole world some day, I would happily take the challenge!
I have never followed any one particular yoga style as such. I don’t believe in categorising it as a style. That’s why we call our Yoga school Total Yoga. Everyone does yoga as per their mind, body, breath and expectations. The same asana works very differently on each person, until there comes a time when you embrace Yoga as your way of life. It is then no longer a tool to achieve something. It teaches you to be present. In keeping with the spirit of Yoga, I am going with the flow and making my dreams a reality. By 2019 I will be moving to the mountains and have already started work on our mountain project! We are building a Yogi Home and this will be open for everyone.
“Only from the heart can you touch the sky.” Rumi
Director and Co-founder Total Yoga
Instagram @neetu_yogi , @totalyoga
Facebook Neetu Singh , @totalyoga