I find that so many of us within this industry downplay our role in the world.
This is puzzling considering the amount of time, energy, and financial investment we make into constantly improving our skills and expanding our education. There tends to be an overall attitude of it’s “just Pilates”, “we’re not saving lives”, and “we shouldn’t take ourselves so seriously”. This thinking contradicts everything we believe about how great the method is.
Plus, I believe we are saving lives. We all know and believe in the power of mindful movement and the effects it has on the physical, mental, and emotional body.
What happens when your client misses their sessions? What effect does a good Pilates session have on a stressed out CEO or a mother with no time for herself? An athlete that makes strides in their sport or an individual who no longer has pain every morning when they wake up?
Comparing our work to brain surgeons and doctors or telling ourselves not to be so serious, it’s “just Pilates”, undervalues the method and ourselves. We must know our limitations, but look at how far the industry has come in its relationship to the medical community. Let’s remember the countless stories of healing that occurred through Pilates when the medical community had no answers. You have to look no further than your own clients’ body, facial expression, and energy when they finish a session or tell you their daily activities are now easier.
I’m all for light-heartedness and humor but when it comes to our livelihood we should be serious about our worth and the difference we make in the world. I’ve worked with individuals whose lives have changed for the better. One in particular came in timid and depressed, but as her posture and strength changed her confidence grew and she made remarkable strides in all areas of her life. I’ve worked with an individual that strengthened their body enough to not have the back surgery that was prescribed and others who were prepared and recovered quickly after medical intervention. There are tons of stories of people whose lives have changed for the better when they started Pilates. Isn’t that worthwhile?
If our clients or a child spoke lowly of themselves we’d be concerned about their self-worth and mental and emotional well-being. So why are we doing that to ourselves? If we don’t value our contributions, how can we expect clients, potential clients, and the world at large to?
To my colleagues and friends around the world that work tirelessly and passionately, please never underestimate your worth and the positive impact you have. It literally takes one body and mind at a time – starting with your own.