I was listening to a podcast with Ed Mylett the other day, and he said something (well a lot of things, but one thing in particular) that struck me. He said, so often when we are trying to achieve big goals or take big business steps, we hit a bump in the road, a challenge, or a set back, and we think it’s a sign to stop or quit. We think, clearly the universe does not want me to do this so, I guess it’s not for me. When in reality, these moments are a sign to continue.
A few weeks ago, I was preparing for my upcoming Take It Off Yoga Retreat, like I have been every few months for the past 2 years. People were interested, and signing up, and I was excited. And then, all of the sudden, the sign-ups stopped. People dropped out. People were still interested, but I was getting flooded with reasons as to why this retreat won’t work for them (money, schedule, priorities, you name it). When it came time to decide if I’m going to proceed with the retreat or not, I was forced to really look at what was going on. I realized that the two people signed up for the retreat were new yoga teachers, looking to apply their skills and do something meaningful.
One morning, while reading, I paused to reflect on my goals for the retreat. Since the first retreat, I knew I wanted to expand. I didn’t want these retreats to be about ME leading them, I wanted them to be about what they represent: the taking off of layers that hold you back. The freedom and self-love they empower women to embody. And I knew I couldn’t accomplish that mission on my own - not in the way I saw it. So from the beginning, I saw other yoga teachers, leading Take It Off retreats all the time. So...why wasn’t I doing that? I mean, logistically, I knew why. I was doing it, just very slowly. Bringing on one intern at a time, and sort of figuring out the process, not really knowing where it would go. But what’s the real truth? The truth is that I was afraid and uncertain. I thought maybe what I’m offering is not good enough to teach it to others. I thought maybe no one would want to join.
All of the sudden, the epiphany hit me. This November retreat is not meant for me to lead another group of students. This retreat, is for the training of new Take It Off facilitators!
On Thursday, myself and a handful of yoga teachers and self-development leaders embark on a 4 day journey into self-discovery, leadership training, and cohesive team building, and I am beyond excited. :)
This process was a little scary. I mean, not having enough people to do a retreat has never happened before. I could have felt like I should quit, like it just isn’t for me anymore. But that’s not the truth. So, I allowed myself to remain open, ask myself questions, and look for improvement. And had this not happened, this opportunity for expansion would have been missed.
What’s more is that, if I had simply led this retreat, like I usually do, I would have not had the push to make a change.
A setback isn’t a way out. A setback is a way IN.
I think sometimes we forget that growth lies outside our comfort zone. I mean, how many times have you heard that? And yet, we forget that that means that growth is uncomfortable. Period. Doesn’t mean you don’t get better at handling it, you certainly can, but it never is simply comfortable. That defies the very definition of it. So when life/the universe/your business/your relationship throws you a curve ball, or something that’s really disheartening, look at it as a sign that you are growing. It is FOR you. You GET to step into the challenge because you are ready for it.
Was this process easy? No. Comfortable? Hell no. Was it what I planned? No. Does that mean my life is terrible or I’m really struggling or I need help? No. It means I’m growing. I’m in the gym of life, doing a couple extra reps past my burn out point, and it’s hard. But I know it will ultimately build my strength, and my ability to be impactful.
Your challenges are your blessings. Your setbacks are your boosters. Your uncomfortability is the source of your growth. Lean into them. Love and trust yourself so much that you know you can step through it. Let it be a magnific part of life and growth.