I had a career in the software industry for almost 14 years achieving the highest rung in the career ladder and traveling across many countries. However, for me, finding Yoga happened all of a sudden.
As a Program Manager at an IT firm in Bangalore, I managed 25 projects and 200 people by working 18-hour days. With this heavy workload and my poor eating habits, my health went for a toss. I had a skin allergy, severe back pain, and breathing issues. To make matters worse, I was away from my family.
My company was preparing my Visa to travel to Australia for an extended work trip. Considering my health, I asked for a week off before this trip. But it was rejected, including even the option to work from home. At that point, my organization wanted a 24-hr shift as they could not manage my team of 200 people without me.
All of a sudden, when I was struggling with project issues and my time-off rejection, I went truly blank for few minutes. Questions began circling in my mind. What more am I going to achieve by going to Australia? What am I going to do when my health is getting worse each day? And with my family being away from me? Is this truly adding any value to my career?
These questions started circling again and again and I could not move an inch or concentrate on my work anymore. So I shut down for the day and went to my room. I was hoping that by the next day I would feel fine. However, I did not. With my health going back and forth, I did not want to work so hard to only spend my earnings paying doctors to prescribe medication for me.
Around this time, one of my friends in Chennai who worked with me in the US, told me about this yoga course he was taking. As I was not a fast-paced gym person, my muscles were tight, and I was having issues with insomnia, I thought of trying yoga to improve my health. I remembered that a few years back when I was in the U.S, I attended a workshop and course from Art of Living. Even then, the application of Yoga was a huge relief for me.
I quit my job at that moment and came to YOGA! Yes, I resigned!
My initial intent was to heal myself and regain my health. Slowly, with the practices of Yoga, I began to understand how rigid my body and mind had become. My mind was like a cockroach, with my antennas always alert managing 25 projects!
As I became more present, my back pain, breathing issues and other troubles of acidity started diminishing day by day. My hip, which was like a rock, started becoming so light and flexible. My sleep improved so much that now it takes me only a few minutes to fall asleep.
As I was always highly alert and sharp, I asked my mom if I had become very slow or dull after coming to yoga. She responded “No! Now I find you normal.” She was so happy for me that I had chosen to concentrate on my health.
My interest in yoga continued to grow. As I got relief from my pain, I wanted to learn more. I wanted to share these skills so that I could help people who were also facing such issues attain a healthy and happy life.
After several rounds of a difficult interview selection process, I joined a dense course for 1.5 years at Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram in Chennai. Krishnamacharya was the guru of BKS Iyengar. The mind, body, and breath concepts that we covered in my education amazed me.
It is as unique as each of us. Hence, the practice also differs for each individual and needs customization. The skills of Yoga must be taught “not as it applies to us, but as it applies to the other”.
Further enhancing my knowledge, I obtained a certification in Yoga Therapy from Bihar School of Yoga. It has been over 4 years since quitting my corporate job and the hi-fi environment. Yet, there has not been a single moment that I regret my decision or feel like going back even when I think of the fond memories I have for some of it.
Yoga has changed my life from stress-filled to peace-filled. Above all the co-human connectivity which I establish with my clients and students and the satisfaction I get out of it is immeasurable. Yoga helped me understand what my NEEDS truly are rather than what I want.
Nevertheless, all of this would not have been possible without the love, care and support shown by my family and people around me. They believed in me then and continue to believe in me today. They are my biggest pillars of my strength.
Yoga is all about what lies within and there is nothing without it!
Keep Calm and Love Yoga
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