About eighteen months before my yoga teacher training, I attended my first ever yoga class; heated Vinyasa. I remember afterwards feeling incredible, and from that point I started attending classes almost every day. Within the first week, I had found my favourite teacher. The first time I experienced one of her classes, I remember thinking to myself: ‘Hmmm, I reckon I could do this…’ As I continued to attend more classes, I got to know several yoga teachers. I found myself developing my own practise, becoming more and more drawn inward- experiencing my body, mind, and emotions from the inside out. I also started paying particular attention to how different teachers approached their work, and found it fascinating. It was also around this time that I met my partner, Lilly. Lilly had been a yoga teacher for years already, and she was able to offer wonderful insights into what I was experiencing. One morning, I started looking online for yoga courses, and found School Yoga Institute, and Sacha Munay. A yoga teacher training in Peru, infused with the wisdom of the Andean Medicine Wheel. Already having an interest in Shamanism, this was a dream for me. I could jump wholeheartedly into my yoga journey, gain a qualification that I could use anywhere in the world, and expose myself to the shamanic work that I had been drawn to for years already.
My journey to yoga started in a hospital. I had lived with depression and anxiety for most of my life up to the age of 22, before I finally sought help in the form of a psychologist. My condition at the time was such that she sent me to the psychiatric ward. There, I met psych-nurse Steve. Steve interviewed me for around two hours, and it was his job to determine whether I should stay, or whether I could leave. After counselling me on the things that were going on at the time, he eventually said “Based on what you have told me, I could keep you here. But to me you just seem like a 22 year old faced with the dichotomy of life; it’s ugly and it’s beautiful. So I’ll give you the choice. You can stay here and see the psychiatrist, or you can leave. Up to you, mate.” During the interview he had also casually mentioned martial arts and yoga as great ways to learn to breathe and calm down. I chose to leave. It was still some time before I attended my first yoga class, but in hindsight I had already started on my yoga path when I left that day. I had decided that I was going to learn to love myself, to be honest at every opportunity, and to take control of my health.
I attended my training with SYI to connect with my spiritual nature, and to learn how to integrate this into my life back home. I was fascinated with the idea of teaching yoga, and hoped to gain some understanding of how it works. I also wanted to deepen my own practise, and have enough knowledge that I could practise consistently at home and feel confident that what I was doing was helpful and not harmful! What I actually got out of the training was all of this, and so much more. So many tears, so much love, friends for life, experiences that I still cannot believe I got to have. On the very first night around the fire, I shared with the group that I have always had an intellectual understanding of Spirit, but wanted to experience it first-hand. Both within my being, and in my connections with others, I felt the real magic to be had in this human experience when we open up. It was breathtaking.
My intention now is to start teaching yoga, and take as many opportunities as I can. I would love to work in studios, and also start taking staff yoga sessions in my workplace. I am a firm believer in just saying yes to every opportunity that arises with new ventures, and I cannot wait to see where yoga teaching takes me. Already, I have started working with a group of young men who have come to my city as refugees. Through a friend, I not get to work with them every week doing yoga and connecting with them. The idea is to help with their English learning, but also to give them a physical practise to help them calm down and focus.
I would like to empower people by sharing with them my passion for life, and love for people. I want people to see beyond the mundanity of daily life, the struggles we face as individuals, and the struggles that we face collectively. As we come to stillness, learning to sit comfortably with ourselves, I believe that collectively we can begin to reconnect with ourselves, each other, and the earth. I want to connect with people by sharing my story honestly, always striving to speak from my heart and offering clarity in a world that is often clouded with confusion.
You can reach me at email@example.com, or through Instagram at hamishjetson.
I went to my YTT at Sacha Munay, Peru, from Tasmania. I grew up on a farm, in a locality with around 50 inhabitants. I now live in the capital city of Tasmania, which has a population of 200,000 people. Flying to Peru was my first time leaving the country alone. I had every reason to be afraid, doubtful, and to not believe in my ability to get through the course. The truth is that my training with SYI was one of the best things I have ever done in my life. No matter your fears, if it calls you, please go!