One of the great things about teaching many yoga classes every week in a city like New York is that you get to meet a diverse and wide range of professionals—doctors, lawyers, CEOs, celebrities, Ph.D.’s, scientists, teachers and professors.
I've been blessed to have in my classes professionals of every possible field. One of my favorites to have in class are teachers. Because they know the importance of learning, and they understand and appreciate the role of the teacher. And I learn a lot from them.
I have pre-K teachers, elementary and high school teachers, NYU professors, published teachers who travel to symposiums and congresses, decorated with awards and recognition. Some of them have newspaper or magazine columns or segments on TV, or even their own TED talks. When I see them in my newsfeed teaching and speaking in such prestigious venues I feel humbled that they choose to share some of their time with me.
They all keep a low key profile. They are soft-spoken, well articulated. Extremely knowledgeable and humble. And kind. You can see in their eyes their dedication and passion.
I learn a lot just by listening to them and noticing how they talk about their teachings in their respective fields.
I also learn a lot by noticing how and what they choose to share on social media.
They don’t mix their personal and professional lives in a way that is confusing for their students. They don't send mixed messages through their social platforms.
They do share personal things, and that is beautiful because you see the everyday, human side of them. You see their families celebrating their projects and encouraging them.
They do promote their events and even show their funny side sometimes, but they don't cross boundaries of common sense nor do they objectify or sensationalize themselves. They don't sexualize their fields.
They don't need to provoke their followers with risqué images because their teaching precedes them and because their bodies are not their teachings.
They don't run after followers, likes or shares. They don't seek adulation, attention, or a self-esteem boost. They don't try to be sassy or edgy to fill up their classrooms. Their classrooms are filled because they worked hard, they have profound things to offer, and their reputations are built with integrity. They are class acts.
I bow to them. I strive to be like them.
I am thankful to have these teachers in class because they set a high bar for everyone else. They remind me where my focus should be and what kind of teacher I would like to be.
Originally published on September 14, 2015