We did not have a lot of money growing up so it was very clear to me at an early age that if I wanted certain things I would have to work for it. I have had a job for as long as I can remember, sometimes 2 or 3. It has taught me to be independent and that I could have anything I put my mind to. I still continue to work very hard and have no doubt that I can achieve all of my goals.
I my early 20’s, I started reading self-help and health books that kicked off a serious exercise program, improved my eating habits and completely changed my approach to life. I lost a lot of weight and found my dream job. I knew for the first time in my life what it felt like to be truly happy and once I started down that path there was no looking back. Now that I think about it, I was a yogi before I even stepped into my first yoga class.
Making the transition to becoming a yoga teacher was hard just because I didn’t have the confidence to admit it’s something that I wanted. I had all the insecurities that my yoga students have come to me with over the years - like worrying that their practice wasn’t good enough to teach. My decision was easy once I realized that it wasn’t about me and it was about sharing what I knew. After announcing it to my yoga teacher in New York everything just seemed to fall into place. It’s one of the best decisions I have ever made.
The secret to running a business well is very simple - love what you do. Yoga is not something that I do here and there for exercise or for money. It’s my way of life. It’s something that I believe in and sharing it is my passion.
I practiced and taught yoga all the way up to the week of my delivery. After having Bodhi I could hardly make time to take a shower or eat, let alone go to a yoga class so I would squeeze in stretches whenever I could and I did not focus on how long or how much. One thing I have done every day since I had Bodhi is go for long walks. I put him in the ergo and hit the streets. I choose simpler or more difficult routes depending on my energy that day and it’s a fantastic way to spend time with friends that I don’t get to see as much. My advice would be to not rush back into the exercise regimen you had before your baby but find new ways to work out and start out slow. It will come back before you know it!
"I love bigger and stronger than I ever have and I now know 100% what it is to truly love unconditionally."
Since Bodhi arrived it has been a non-stop love fest around our home. I love bigger and stronger than I ever have and I now know 100% what it is to truly love unconditionally. I am surprised at how well I can operate on little to no sleep and at how much I love being a mom. It keeps me present, inspired and motivated to be better person each day.
I stick to a schedule most of the time but when life gets in the way I make the best of it. My style of parenting is a balance of reading all the books and seeking out guidance, while at the same time being flexible and listening to my baby and to my intuition.
"I want him to move through life with integrity, to be kind, and respectful to himself and others."
I want to pass values on to Bodhi by being an example. I want to be the person that I want him to become. I want him to move through life with integrity, to be kind, and respectful to himself and others. I will encourage Bodhi to always follow his dreams and to live a life that he is proud of.
My advice to new moms - Sleep whenever you can. It’s so easy to try and do things around the house or catch up on emails once your baby falls asleep but I say put that stuff aside and catch a nap instead because you’ll be better for it. Second, check in with your partner often. Things change day to day and in the beginning and it’s a blur. My husband and I would make a point to sit down and have a heart to heart every couple of days. Sometimes we would have a good laugh and sometimes I would just need a healthy cry. We always have each other’s back and it was important for me to feel that because in the early days I had no idea what I was doing. And lastly I would say to listen to your intuition. Looking back I don’t regret a thing that I did when following my gut.
Baby Hero is an adorable and high quality baby clothing line. I'm totally inspired by the message and giving model. It's so important to me to give back and for every product sold Baby Hero will provide life saving medical interventions to a mother and baby in need - What's not to love!
My word for 2015 is NOW. I have many longtime goals and I resolve to take steps each day whether they are big or small to make my dreams come true. I will take more action and less procrastination. The time is now.
Follow Claudia Whitney at https://www.facebook.com/claudiawhitney.yoga
This interview is a part of our Hero Parent series, in which we interview mothers and fathers around the world about their experiences becoming and growing as parents. At Baby Hero we believe parenthood is one of the great threads running through society, allowing us to connect across nationalities, languages, and ethnicities.