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Meet Marcella Jacobs

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marcella Jacobs.

Marcella, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I came to yoga the way a lot of people do. At first it was curiosity, then it was ego, eventually it became a place to escape. Slowly though, over time, it became a place where I grew physically, mentally and emotionally stronger. Allowing space to get to know myself and process life. I used to work as a fashion designer in New York. I was lucky and found a job out of college working with amazing people who made the long hours and lack of work/life balance more bearable. After only a few years though, I could already feel myself burning out. I moved on to a corporate job that allowed a much shorter work week and a stronger sense of boundaries between work and self. As my yoga practice became a bigger part of my day to day life I couldn’t help but, amongst other things, start to think of the footprint my chosen career was leaving on the planet. We were mass producing almost the same exact things that every other company was mass producing, adding to consumerism culture and pollution. It became harder and harder for me to justify where my money was coming from and I felt I had to hold myself accountable for what kind of impact my career was having. Long story short, I blew up my life, left New York and starting teaching yoga.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Oh my goodness, bumpy, bumpy road. Hard to even find the road at times, not enough people are leaving those little stacks of rocks that mark the trail… I did my training in Brooklyn at a studio called New Love City. I had a great community of friends and teachers there that could have potentially made the transition to teaching relatively smooth, so naturally I decided to move to Los Angeles where I basically had no community. It’s been difficult finding my place as a teacher here in LA. I’ve had trouble getting studio owners to respond to my interest in teaching, I’ve completely choked under the pressure of auditions, I’ve watched multiple studios close. There are a lot of amazing yoga teachers in Los Angeles and it can be easy to get caught up in the scarcity culture of our country. Comparing the road I’m on to the roads of others and the fear that there just isn’t enough space for me in the yoga teaching community. Luckily I have a support system that metaphorically slap me across the face when I let the bumps get to me.

Alright – so let’s talk business. What else should we know about you and your career so far?
I am a 500hr certified yoga instructor offering group classes in a variety of settings as well as private, one on one lesson. I offer vinyasa, ashtanga, yin, hatha and meditation classes to the Los Angeles community. Generally my classes are challenging and meditative with a strong focus on the breath. I encourage all students to approach their practice with a sense of inquiry, allowing space for each person to explore and tailor the practice to their specific needs in that moment. I’ve also had the opportunity to offer recess yoga at an elementary school as part of a yoga and meditation program. The student response was incredible and eye opening. Kids respond so well to mindfulness practices and its such a useful tool to offer them as they’re learning how to interact with themselves and the world.

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
Honestly, nothing. There are certainly different choices I could have made but I feel like I’ve made the right ones for me. Would I recommend quitting your career and moving across the country to try to make it as a yoga teacher? No… but also yes! Sometimes you just don’t have a choice. Sometimes you’ve just gotta do the thing.

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Image Credit:
Dave Getzschman

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