I had a dream, but that proved to be a bit of a disappointment. When I was expecting my first child I fell in love. Not only for my child to be born, but also for yoga. Over the years my love story with yoga evolved and I wanted to become a yoga teacher to work in the area of my passion. A few years later when I was expecting my third child I applied to a 12-month yoga teacher training program and I felt I was ready give up my rather successful career in advertising to become a yoga teacher.
My baby was 6 weeks old with a milk allergy and was barely sleeping; it was a difficult time but I started to work hard to make my dream come true. Towards the end of my teacher training program, I stared to teach yoga on regular basis. One evening when washing yoga mats after teaching a yoga class I understood that I had changed. Whereby yoga was once a source of inspiration for me as a hobby – the life of a yoga teacher was not at all what I wanted. I was wondering why I had invested so much money and time for something that was clearly not for me.
In Miisa’s blog ”5 ways to Be Productive Without Stress” she wrote that the goals are the sign posts in our journey to success, I can now relate to that.
Life will surprise you… if you let it.
After the maternity break I went back to my job in advertising – and soon I was invited to work as a planning director in a growing PR agency. I really liked my new job and yoga continued to play in important part in my life, but only as a hobby that I never had enough time for.
But as always … life is full of surprises. One morning my husband, Mikko, told me that he had a business idea that would help people like us to integrate more yoga into their lives. I felt that the timing was really really bad and asked him ”not to do anything about it for next 4 months as I had just started in my new job”. But as always he was persistent and went to pitch the idea to a start-up event the next week. After one month …. Yogaia – the first live and interactive online yoga studio was born as a company and I found myself teaching test classes on our living room floor.
Chasing you dreams is not a sprint, it is a marathon.
After a year, Yogaia was doing great in the country of my origin (Finland) – and we felt that it was time to conquer the world. We moved to London and thought that bringing the Finnish recipes for success would make us grow to the moon and back in no time. But it has not been easy and our business was struggling to meet our growth targets and we tried to work even harder to meet those goals. Starting the life in London was not easy for us or our children either. Our 5-year old was crying at school every morning for months. In the beginning of the year we started to feel quite run-down. We had been running like crazy but in the wrong direction.
It was time to slow down and invest in endurance rather than speed. After numerous customer interviews, focus groups and strategy sessions we started to take steps that take us to right direction. We are maybe moving a bit slower than we expected, but at least we are running to right direction. Only time will tell if we arrive at our goal as winners, but now we are at least enjoying the ride.
I had to give up my dream and change my goals to get something better instead. The surprising thing is that the dots have connected and the yoga teacher training I took a long ago is now serving me so well. In the midst of hardship I can see that dreams will only come together slowly, but you have to give them the space they need. Things you did years ago are more useful than you think and will always play a big role in you dream scenario. But the dream scenario may not be what you thought. And that’s the best part.
Anu Petajä – a passionate yogi, the chief communications director and co-founder of Yogaia, and a DrivenWoman member.
Test Yogaia 14days for FREE with a code DRIVENWOMAN. Join Yogaia’s Creativity Home Retreat June 17-19th with Creative Yoga and two talks on exploring and connecting to your creativity with Creativity Coach Kate Taylor. Learn more about Creativity Home Retreat and sign-up.