Last week was my first week of school... It has been eight years since I stepped into my first University class. At the time I was just 17, just a wee lil freshman with so much to learn, free to roam this giant world.
Well not much has changed there, I still have so much to learn and wander quite a bit. The difference being the shift in my perspective. It is an entirely different feeling going to school because you want to versus feeling like you need to.
Lucky for me, my undergraduate schooling taught me an abundance of lessons, as I made mistakes and learned from them. I made 'forever friends' that are a part of who I am today and I got so lost within myself in the best most explorative way. It was some of the most formative years of my life; which is quite common for that age group. I feel most post-college kids would agree with me on this one.
It has been four years since I graduated from University and discontinued traditional schooling. Conceptually that is not that long of a time frame yet it feels like a lifetime ago. Six months ago I applied to a Masters in Anthropology, got accepted and offered a wicked scholarship for this degree. Exciting news right?
However, it wasn't sitting right with me. I love anthropology, I love learning about different cultures, I crave learning and understanding different ways of living whether its past or present groups of people (hence why I love to travel). I loved my thesis research project, which was to explore a subculture of sport within the local rock-climbing community here in B.C. Everything was falling into place yet something was not clicking right inside of me.
One day I woke up and realized it was just a stall tactic. This masters program would be an amazing two years but then what? I knew I didn't want to work in academia, at least not full-time, and with anthropology that's pretty much the only stable door that opens for you. I had resolved myself to thinking that after the two year program I would then figure out the rest…
Again this didn't sit well with me. I remember getting coffee with my Mom and bringing this unresolved feeling up to her. She then asked me what it is I am passionate about? That should be an easy question right? For some perhaps but for me it was not. It got right under my skin, which my mom has this uncanny ability to do when she wants me to think outside of my own wall-paper/mind-box.. Well her crazy antics worked (again, might I add). I realized I loved wellness; the holism concept that surrounds living your best life. At this point I had already decided on my yoga school in Bali but I wanted a plan for after that.
I then pulled my computer out and starting researching non-traditional schools in my area. I had an interest in naturopathy but I was not yet ready to drop 100,000 k and give four years of my life to this program just yet. I then stumbled across this holistic nutrition program in Vancouver. I read the course description and saw all the topics that were covered. I immediately got excited and told my partner, mom and best-friend. I sat on it for a few days to see if my excitement was short lived.
It was not.
I then applied, went in for an interview and paid my tuition all just one week before I left for Indonesia to begin my yoga teacher training. Derailing my life plan, and taking an entirely different course that was not even on the table the week prior.
Something about it felt right. Working in the mental health field for four years revealed a common pattern. What was chronically occurring with my patients was that they were not sleeping, eating or exercising appropriately. With this program I will be able to help people adjust their diet, lifestyle, implement unique exercise routines (utilizing yoga), minimize stressors, teach stress management techniques as well as help them improve their sleep patterns. These tools will empower my clients to live their best life; however, that may look to them.
This feels right.
This week further validated that. Although it was only week one and I feel sluggish getting back into the “student” mindset, I am excited and eager to learn. I felt the same way at yoga school where I just wanted to absorb every. single. thing.
I guess what got me on this train of thought was how comical it is that people care so much about their external self. Almost to the point of obsession people will think about what products they want to put on their skin, what clothes they should put on their body, what jewelry they will wear to compliment their outfit, what makeup should use to enhance their features, what hairstyle or highlights they need to adapt to.
Directing so much energy into their external self; however, they lack insight and knowledge into how their insides work. How often do you think about what you are eating? Whether ingredients are in the makeup, shampoo, lotion, laundry detergent and cleaning supplies? How all these chemical's impact the systems within yourself? It definitely is a question we should all be asking and investigating the answers to. Asking ourselves if the food buy in the store and at restaurants are serving us a purpose or destroying us?
Yoga is all about knowing yourself; this is the physical, the mental and the spiritual self. What we put in our body is a huge part of figuring out how to tap into our full potential. This next year will be quite the journey as I embark on the life of a student becoming a holistic nutritionist so that I can share this knowledge with you. Food is a fuel source that every human needs to survive. Imagine if you could utilize your food to fuel you not only to survive but to thrive?