Everything is figureoutable – Marie Forleo

When I left my corporate job on Broadway I had less than $5k to my name. I figured it was enough with 3 months rent and a one way ticket to Australia. I didn’t worry about the money because my heart was racing on adrenaline. At the time I had little faith and did not believe in a universal force of much anything. I simply believed that one day we all turn to ashes and well that would be it. To me that was enough of a reason to live today purposefully.
 
And then funny things started to happen – after about 3 months in Australia a friend of mine sent me pics of her apt in Manhattan Beach and a company reached out to me with a modeling opportunity. I saw it as “a calling” and flew back to LA to start again. At the time, I only had one private client and two public classes at Bryan Kest’s Power Yoga. I was praying all of my students would come back because if they didn’t then I would not be able to cover my bills.
 
I did not come from a rich family – privileged was a stretch although I would say yes after working with the communities I have. Still, my mom was filing for bankruptcy and my dad was out of commission due to the housing crisis in AZ. I was on my own, but I wasn’t scared – I was invigorated.
 
The first year was hard. Isn’t it anywhere? I struggled to stay healthy, maintain a practice of my own and manage my energy from day to day. I asked the universe to bring me more clients and they came – one and then another. Sometimes sporadic and sometimes in abundance. Tamal Dodge introduced me to the studio owner at The Green Yogi and opened up a studio of his own – suddenly I had more classes. Yet, I was still struggling to find my voice and maintain consistent numbers. I needed to bring people in to make ends meet. If you don’t know already, yoga teachers do NOT make their money leading public classes – it might as well be a public service for the potential of gaining private clients, workshops and retreats. My mom had an energy healer who I started working with on a consistent basis.
 
Here’s the thing, you can’t do it alone.
 
No one is asking you to and your better off asking for help than trying to be a superhero and do it all by yourself. There are plenty of people who want to help if you just reach out your hand and ask. My life has become SO MUCH easier just by simply asking God, spirit, the universe, a friend or my mentor for some sound advice. The answers live within you, your job is just to uncover them below all of the noise of everyday life.
 
Proud to say, I made it. I have reached my goal of success – I have abundant classes, private clients I love and see on a consistent basis, workshops, full retreats, courses online and I am headlining my first festival this summer over 4th of July weekend.
 
Yet, I find myself again at a crossroads. Asking myself, how did I get on this path in the first place? And the only answer I have that is authentic is spirit. Spirit guided me to my first yoga class at UCLA which lead me to free classes at lululemon athletica where I met Jay Co who gave me an opportunity to participate in a teacher training. From there, I just trusted that whatever I was called to do it what I was supposed to be doing. I found yoga to be a healing practice. I see all of the newsletters and social media posts that talk about the “yoga body” and yoga being a great “work out”.
 
Here’s the reality of that – it’s a great physical practice but there are much easier ways to get skinny and loose a couple of pounds. My good friend Angie Stewart Fitness just launched a 30 day’s Road to Awesome challenge that will help anyone get into shape and overhaul your eating habits. You go girl!
 
What really brought me to yoga was spirituality. As a dancer, I had lost all faith in myself. I gave my power away to choreographers, producers and casting agents. When I was on my mat, it was my opportunity to be me and express myself with my body. I am a mover, always have been and always will be. I find spirit by moving and flowing with the rhythm of my body. I can FEEL shakti running through my veins if I just close my eyes and go within. This is my purpose – to bring people back to their bodies.
 
I feel we are disconnected – as a species. Stuck to our phones, constantly on computers, killing ourselves at the gym for an hour to make up for the 8 we spent sitting at a desk, and eating fast food. Our bodies DON’T LIKE THIS. On the other side of fear lies freedom. I am freeing myself from the confines of fear and stepping into the potential that could be with just a few moments of silence everyday to stop and reassess. Some people call this meditation, I call it therapy. Without it, I would probably be ok – but I am a much better person with it in my daily life.
 
So #stopdropandyoga. If you’re reading this at your desk please close your eyes and take three deep breaths. One two and three. Find your sense of center and discover that the craziness exists mostly in your mind. Marie Forleo talked about how everything is figureoutable in her talk with Oprah at my alma mater UCLA last week. It’s so true. Most of life is our mindset. If you do not rule your mind, your mind will rule you. – Buddha
 
So I find myself at a crossroads – trying to figure out how to bring people back into their bodies, develop a sense of spirituality and live their life on purpose. I believe creative people can make a living doing what they love each and every day. My mission over the next few weeks is to figure out how to put this into a package and be of service to those who need the guidance and insight.
 
It is a new journey – I see the path in front of me. Every accomplishment starts with a decision to try – Gail Devers.
 
If you find yourself at the same crossroads – please share your story in the comments section below.  So many of us learn from each other and witnessing others on the same path.  Sign up for newsletter updates and stay connected on social media @aliomyoga
May you see the road less traveled as the one paved for you.
Love,
Ali

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