Teaching Recap: April 2023

I’ve been sitting on this month’s recap, trying to figure out what to say. I often try to glean a theme from my recent observations during class, or what’s going on in the yoga world around me. But day after day of gray skies, of damp and chill, has really wiped my energy and dulled my ability to synthesize information.

What I can say is that I’ve been trying to coax invitations and opportunities in different directions to establish (drum roll…) Actual Regular Days Off for myself. I’ve had plenty of conversationswith fellow teachers, and it’s hard to make anything about a yoga life feel stable and consistent. Attendance ebbs and flows, studio schedules shift, client interest slips, earnings bloom and shrivel. But after nearly burning myself to the ground in March, I got serious about building a kinder, more self-compassionate schedule. Starting in June, I will have a real weekend―two consecutive days off from regular classes. My husband Matt has Sunday/Monday off each week, and I’ll be matched with him, so that we can be restful together and reconnect.

I’m a product of a society that equates value with productivity, so this gift of rest causes me shame, guilt, cringing. It’s embarassing for me to Have Needs, to Require Support. I died a little recently when a manager expressed being “disappointed” that I backed out of an opportunity. (I am a disappointment! I’ve made someone else’s life sadder/harder/annoying!) But some key chats with people I respect have been helpful to make peace with this. My pal Kerstin mentioned some interviews with Jenny O’Dell (author of How To Do Nothing and the new Saving Time) who drew distinction between leisure time and a day off. She also said that our rest time should not be in service of become a better, more productive worker. I got a couple gut-punches of true from Self-Care Laid Bare, an episode of the Code Switch podcast.

I’ll probably stay flexible to take on an occasional workshop or sub a class here and there (in part because I’m worried about making the finances work), but wow, it’s so soothing to imagine the mental, emotional, and physical spaciousness that will soon be here.

The Deets

April by the numbers:

  • 68 classes
  • 75.75 hours of teaching time
  • 732 students in attendance
  • 8 locations
  • 3 babies welcomed!

Schedule Update

As previewed last month, I started a new Heated Flow class at JP Centre Yoga. My weekend schedule has been a little spotty with previously made committments, but you can find me leading that class on most Saturdays, 4:15-5:30p in Studio 2.

My weekends at SOMA Yoga Center will be changing. My last installment of the Sunday, 10:00a Align & Flow class will be May 28 (Memorial Day Weekend). I will launch a Heated Flow on Saturdays, 10:00a, on June 10th. This cozy class will be held in the Back Studio.

View my complete weekly schedule for more details.

Your Words

And here are a selection of sweet comments and funny feedback from students and peers, received or overheard. My favorites in bold:

  • Yoga is really all about bullying, right?
  • You’re like the Planet Fitness of yoga teaching: you really radiate “Judgement-Free Zone”.
  • I just need to step inside here and I already feel better.
  • Jill is a great instructor and creates a supportive environment.
  • Jill is the Transition Queen. She’s like, oh, just throw your leg over the back of your head and pivot and sit and ta-da! but somehow it works and it makes you feel good because you didn’t think you could do something like that, but you can.
  • You worked us so deliberately and carefully up to that [big arm balance]. I hadn’t been able to it in years, but I felt good, I felt prepared because of how you sequenced the class.
  • I love coming to your classes because there’s always a new tip, or a way to think about something, and I feel like I’m learning and growing.
  • Everytime I practice with you, I learn something. Alignment or breath, sure, but everything feels thoughtful. And I get to be thoughtful about what I’m doing.
  • Every type of class you teach is amazing. You’re crushing it. And you balanced my sinuses!
  • Some of that stuff is just so beyond me, but it’s so interesting. You’ve got another regular.
  • There’s always a surprise. There always something that feels fresh and exciting.
  • Thanks for creating such a wonderful, caring space.

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