The year was 2005 and I was ready to be a yogi. I always looked at people who did yoga and wondered what their secret was. There was something about them that just seemed so calm and happy. Could I be calm and happy too, if I was a yogi?
I was determined to try. I didn't know how to start, but I had seen a display at Barnes and Noble with a yoga theme. I drove to the local bookstore in East Haven, Connecticut (I was in college at the time) to start my yoga habit. I looked at all the options on the display - there were so many! I chose a DVD called Yoga Dance Fusion . I grabbed an orange and pink striped mat off the display and headed off to become a yogi.
I loved the DVD. I could probably still do all the moves from it! The instructor, Patricia Moreno, was wonderful, and I still bring to mind some of the things she said (e.g. "gratitude is the greatest multiplier of good") I also loved the company that made the products. The company was called Gaiam, a brand with which I was already familiar. They started in 1988, and my mom, who was ahead of her time with believing in all-natural things, had a few of their products.
Life was topsy-turvy at the end of college, but starting yoga helped keep me grounded. A book I was reading suggested making a mission statement at the end of college/beginning of "adulthood". For mine, I used Gaiam's logo and inserted quotes that inspired and pushed me. The logo itself reminded me to keep balance in my life, the quotes were specific to who I wanted to be.
In 2007 I started my job as a classroom teacher in Hudson, Massachusetts. I did yoga on and off, but had trouble fitting yoga in with the incredible amount of responsibilities of adulthood. Fast-forward to 2014, things started getting really tough for me. I was starting to experience feelings of anxiety, with no clear reason why. As time continued on, it became increasingly hard for me to get through a day without feeling on the verge of a panic attack. As the world became darker for me, it was hard to understand how I could find my way out. This would be the part in the movie where the little voice pops into my head and says "go to yoga"...and that was basically what happened.
Riding home on the T one day I saw a gorgeous studio on Comm Ave in Boston. Every time I rode by it, I gained a little more courage to go inside. Finally, I did. I will never forget opening that door to CorePower Yoga. It was another momentous step in my yoga journey, just like purchasing my first DVD and mat. What happened next actually feels like a blur. My love for yoga took off. I became a dedicated practitioner, then a teacher. I learned more than how to manage my anxiety; a whole new world of thinking opened up to me. I met an incredible community of people that helped push me in a positive direction.
In May of 2020, another momentous step occurred when I officially started (what would later be called) Journey Forward Yoga. And that is where my story ends, and OURS begins.
Being a yogi, teaching other yogis, having a yogi mindset - these things have changed my life. Maybe you have a story like this, or maybe your story is just beginning. From my own story, I hope you can see that "becoming" is a process, and it takes time. As my Dad says, nothing worth it is ever easy.
Now, my process has brought me full-circle. I am super excited to share that I have become an affiliate with Gaiam, the company that first supported my yoga habit. Think of the word "affiliate" like "affiliated with", or "connected." Gaiam fits perfectly with Journey Forward, which is why I'm so excited! They sell yoga, fitness, and wellness products for adults and kids. Their website includes educational material in addition to everything else. I love Gaiam for us because there are so many options at all price levels to support you in your practice.
How did this happen? Well, I always like to say, 95% of the cool things that happen around here are not my idea!! Kelly recently said she was looking for a place to buy her yoga products and said it would be cool if I could give you all some links. The place that came to mind was Gaiam, so I went on their website and clicked on their "affiliate marketing" link. I applied, they accepted! Then I had to figure out how to set it all up, which was no easy task! A very dear family friend who runs her own blog helped me understand what the heck to do. Thank you, Katie! It always, always, always takes a village.
So how does this work? I will share links to products, collections, promotions, etc. If you are interested in buying from Gaiam, you would click on the link. That link has a code that is matched to me. You get your products as you normally would, and I will make a small percentage for referring you.
I am 100% HERE for all your yoga, fitness, and wellness product questions!!! Bring it on! Without further ado, here is the link for the Gaiam Homepage.
Thank YOU for being here, for making JFY what it is, for believing in us, and for letting us share in your yoga story.
Founder, Journey Forward Yoga