Mandatory: Personal Development 101

July 23, 2014
Katherine Austin Wooley


The other day I was having lunch with a good friend.  We tucked inside a favorite restaurant for some precious girlfriend time together as late morning rain cleansed the streets of Birmingham.  Like everyone these days, we have to schedule our friendship time or it doesn't happen!

We both juggle careers and own our own businesses; her children are younger, my children older, and the calendars on our computers would make your eyes cross.  But we both feel it so important to take the time out to focus on what's really important: connecting with friends or family and ourselves.

I had just returned from a 2-part business trip.  First part, I was teaching (working) at a 4-day festival and the last 7 days I immersed in my personal yoga practice and meditation at a summer solstice yoga gathering in New Mexico to fill ME up.

We were talking at lunch about the importance, whether business owners or not, of personal development time.  I shared how I'm adamant about getting away regularly to deepen my studies and practices.  It's vital for me if I'm to grow and evolve as a teacher, leader and business owner in my community.

I take my role/job very seriously.  It's crucial for me to go away and not be distracted with day-to-day business-as-usual so I can really let go and grow.  I always want to be the clearest, purest channel for these teachings when I am home and being of service as a yoga teacher, employer, friend, mom or pack leader to my dearest dog!

We can't be giving, giving, giving all the time without refueling regularly, in body, mind and soul.  For sure I do everyday with my own personal sadhana (yoga & meditation) but that's not the same as going away and diving in deeper with my studies.

I need to attend the next training or study or festival to do "My Work."  It's so important for me to keep evolving on my path. I can only teach what I own.  So it's a must for me to do what it takes to walk my talk.

I emphasize this regularly to my prenatal mammas not to let go of themselves just because they are starting a family.  Continue to keep your girlfriends close, go out, travel when the kids start getting older, take a course - whatever speaks to your soul.  Just keep living beyond parenting or working!

A boss, parent, co-worker or community member modeling self-care and self-growth is a great inspiration to others.  My staff travels and studies as well.  I wholeheartedly welcome and encourage it!

Get a massage, trade babysitting with a friend, go for a walk, take a weekend retreat up north or attend the next level of a training...... as the famous words were once said:  JUST DO IT.


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