“When you are ready to see it you will see it” … “When you are ready to find it it will be in front of you”
Two simple things I say a lot to my students. Yoga has a similar phrase that goes something like this
That phrase has been attributed to Buddhism and several other Philosophies and great teachers, but no matter its origin it has merit.
It can be taken in its literal form to mean that when you are ready to learn something then a teacher, an actual person will appear in your life.
Say for example that you’re thinking of taking up hiking, you’ve never been hiking, and walking in your neighborhood doesn’t count unless you live in a national forest.
But you’ve been to the park and you liked that and now you’re ready for more and then Boom, you meet someone at your Zumba class who hikes all the time and she invites you to head out up to some cool trails on the AT for a day hike and there you go. Hiking.
You were ready and a teacher appeared.
But experience has taught me that its rarely the external teacher that appears the most often, more the internal one that shows up unexpectedly.
I have a client that has some knee issues and while she is very strong and her practice has evolved so beautifully in the year we have been working together, one of her knees has been a bit slower in gaining strength. A few weeks ago, I re-introduced a movement pattern, in a different way, and she was apprehensive about doing it, but tried it anyway. It was a very simple (or so it seemed) movement but it allowed her knee to move differently and now that knee is getting stronger, even faster than it was before. And she asked me why we hadn’t been doing it from the beginning, the simple answer was she wasn’t ready. Physically her body didn’t have the strength and mentally she was still protecting the knee. The more complex answer was that since she wasn’t ready the teacher wasn’t there. She wasn’t ready to see it and so she couldn’t. It was a pattern we had tried before, just in a different way, but now she was ready, and she could see it. She was her teacher here, not me. She had to make the decision to try and she had to overcome the fear of the movement and she had to step up and step out and try.
We are all like that, there are times in our lives when we must step up, step out and face our challenges and when we are ready to do that our inner teacher shows up.
I have had students and private clients over the years who have experienced this with their yoga practice. After months (or years) of practicing they suddenly have a breakthrough in a pose. Where they couldn’t even conceive of sitting in prayer squat pose a few years ago. Suddenly in a class they try and find it more accessible than they ever imagined.
Why? Why now? What changed?
The mat is the same, the sequence is the same, hell even the teacher was the same, Me! Maybe what changed was something inside themselves. Their confidence level or their understanding of the anatomy of the movement or maybe their courage to try new things changed.
What ever the reason, they were ready, and they made the effort to change. They were their own teacher.
Remember this when life gets frustrating, when you’re in a situation that feels impossible or at the very least more challenging than you expected. Know that perhaps you are still within the lesson, you’re still learning and that someday you will be able to recognize the value of that lesson. 20/20 hindsight right!
When the student is ready the master will appear. Be your own teacher, learn to recognize when you are ready and then call on the master within yourself.