Rachel Terlop

2019 Henry Ford Innovation Nation Teacher of the Year

Social Emotional Learning and Facilitation Coach

Early Childhood B.S.Ed & M.A.T. and RYT-200

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  • Rachel Terlop

The Other Side of YTT



When was the last time you were within a group of people where you felt completely safe, secure, and at peace. In my professional educator experience, the first time I felt this was 10 months ago when I started my yoga teacher training (YTT) with Breathe for Change.


For those of you who have never heard of this revolutionary company, it is a yoga teacher training program for TEACHERS! Just imagine.... 70-80 educators in one room, for 200-hours, over 16 days, learning and growing together. It is an incredible PD, and gives opportunity for intentional soul work.


In a profession where educators are battling burnout, curriculum changes, and extreme classroom sizes - Breathe for Change reminds us that we are not teachers. We are a soul, in a body, working as an educator. We are not defined by test scores, and neither are our students. We are not valuable based on our contributions in the school community. We are whole, unique, full beings who have chosen to pour into the lives of others. This is what Breathe for Change taught me (among many other things). I found B4C when I was in a low place - tired, buried, and hurting. It provided me with the functional skills of yoga poses (asana) to engage and support my body, but also taught me the philosophy behind yoga practices. Learning what yoga truly is helped me name feelings that I never could find words for, and encouraged me to take a deeper dive into myself, my limiting beliefs, and my empowering beliefs as well. After these 200 hours with educators who pushed me to learn about myself, I can truly say that I have the ability to take care of myself - physically, emotionally, and spiritually.


Now, 10 months later, I am one of those trainers that helped me regain my confidence. For 16 days straight, I am here in a hot gymnasium with no air conditioning, with educators who want to better themselves, and the world - all while leading with love.


This time around, I am able to take a deeper dive, observe how far I have come in 10 months, and support other educators who are working through their struggles. I have a mentorship group of 10 radiant women who have aptly named themselves "Sunflower Souldiers;" fully formed humans who have chosen to turn and face the light. It is an honor to watch them grow.


Being on the other side of YTT has allowed me to step into my stretch zone, support the educational community, and take care of myself. I feel honored to be a part of the Breathe for Change community, and blessed to have been given the guidance to help me care for myself during this transitional period in my life.


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