Thursday, September 26, 2013

the in-between state

i had an audition today at a local yoga studio. typically, auditions go something like this - you walk in, teach a little demo, chat for a few minutes, and then wait to hear back about if they want to bring onto the team.

that was not today. 

today the studio owner simply wanted me to teach a few postures - a standing pose, a seated pose, a twist, a backbend, an inversion. easy enough, right?

wrong! after i taught, we spent a good chunk of time discussing why i said certain things, made certain adjustments, could've done things differently. i kept a calm demeanor on the outside but on the inside my mind was raging, creating story after story.

"he is so much smarter than me. he's totally not going to hire me."
"i wouldn't want to teach here anyway if he's going to be so nit-picky."
"i really love teaching though and he is making some good points."
"i'll never be as good a teacher. maybe i should get a real job."

and on and on and on. 

then, in the middle of all that story, i chose to take a breath and be present. 
to simply listen. really listen.
to open up to his questions. 
to respond rather than react.
to let go of the need to be perfect. 
to walk the middle path.

honestly, it was probably the most challenging audition i've experienced. but i am so thankful for the challenge because it provided me with a beautiful reminder about what pema chödrön calls the in-between state. 

"when we find ourselves in a place of discomfort and fear...we'll find that we want to blame, to take sides, to stand our ground...for the warrior, 'right' is as extreme a view as 'wrong.' they both block our innate wisdom...the in-between state - where moment by moment the warrior finds himself learning to let go - is the perfect training know that we are always in transition, that the only time is now." 
- the places that scare you

after i stepped back from the drama in my mind and rested in my in-between state, i was able to have a genuine connection with the person right in front of me. it wasn't about right or wrong, better or worse, good or bad. it's as simple (but definitely not easy) as that.

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