It’s 6.20 am and I get up on my bike to go to work. This morning there’s no rain but the wind is still chilly. Rihanna’s new album is pumping in my ears and I start to go a little bit faster. Finally my body is heating up. No one seems to be biking this early, even in Amsterdam. Only the bakeries are open and I can feel the smell of newly baked bread as I get closer to the city. The usual doorman greets me ‘good morning’ in Dutch as I enter Conservatorium hotel. No one is in the lobby except for the receptionist, and I quietly walk downstairs to the spa where the studio is awaiting me. I light up a couple of candles around the stone Buddha and they immediately start to spread their warm light. Time to teach. Even though it’s early in the morning, I always feel a sense of gratitude stepping into the studio. Being here in Amsterdam at this moment, doing what I love, feels like a blessing.

Teaching yoga and helping people to find balance on a spiritual, emotional and on a physical level, is what I believe to be my calling in life. The funny thing is that practicing yoga is what helped me to find my life purpose to become a full-time yoga teacher, in order to help others to connect with their true nature. Practicing yoga became a form of self-study where I did not only become more aware of how my body, mind and heart worked, but also how it’s all connected to one and another. As I rediscovering myself this way, everything became more clear; how I wanted to spend my time, with whom and doing what.

Have you ever made a decision in your life where you’ve chosen to listen to other people’s opinions, and then felt in your whole body that it doesn’t feel right? Or have you ever done the opposite, doing something that others might criticize, but as you’ve made your decision you feel that comforting feeling within, that you’re doing exactly what you’re suppose to do?

If we want to live a life where we feel fulfilled and happy, we need to start to listen within. From the moment I decided to teach yoga, I have lived my life based on what resonates with my whole being, not based on the frameworks of the society. Moving to Amsterdam was a big ‘risk’ since I had no idea how this transition might affect me financially or emotionally. I had no secure work, and I went from a long distance relationship to moving in with a man after only knowing him for 9 months. Many people thought that I was brave for making this decision. That might be true in some ways since I naturally had a lot of fears as well. But the main reason I was able to do it, is because a part of me knew that this was my path. The more I allowed myself to fully embrace the idea of moving to Amsterdam, more opportunities came up (work related) and the more I felt safe and happy with the idea of living with Pasqualis.

To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake is to be continually thrown out of the nest

~ Pema Chodron

After being in Amsterdam for approximately 6 months now, I know that I’m exactly where I’m suppose to be. I’m truly grateful to the studios here that have given me the opportunity to teach in order for me to follow my life purpose. And words can not describe the gratitude I have for my man who has proven to be more than I could’ve ever wished for. Thank you Amsterdam.

 

With love,

Johanna

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