Imagine a crowd of thousands of people dressed in white, doing yoga in a giant public space in Paris or Toronto, dedicating their practice to peace. Next, picture people doing yoga to encourage grassroots activism and leadership in South Africa.
Close your eyes and visualize yoga classes in the prisons, schools, special need centers, HIV/AIDS support groups and rural villages of Kenya, all the while, connecting newbie Kenyans with yoga teachers from around the globe.
Involved in all of these is a serene, beautiful yoga teacher from Toronto: Grace Dubery. She teaches at the Art Gallery of Ontario, where a close friend of mine takes her classes and raves about her serene, stretchy vibe.
Dubery leads a GIGANTIC yoga version of Diner en Blanc called the Lole White Tour (minus the booze and potluck) where thousands of yogis dress in white, practice their asanas on yellow mats to music. Sign me up.
Originally from in Portugal, Dubery moved to Montreal as a teen and studied Political Science and African Studies in both Montreal and Nairobi. She began teaching yoga in 2006 and has used her practice to connect communities and people in many parts of the world. In 2011, she traveled to South Africa with Off the Mat, Into the World ® to support HIV/AIDS health, education and prevention programs. If the objective of yoga to help people become both grounded and present, then the movement is lucky to have Dubery as a passionate, globe-trotting facilitator.
Read more about her f*#king awesome job after the jump.
So how did you get that f*#king awesome job? Can you describe what your job is and what it is that you do?
Yoga Instructor. I was always passionate about the practice of yoga. Someone encouraged me to teach for the first time and from there doors kept opening. I made the choice to stay with it and here I am today!
Did you have to give anything up to get here?
Absolutely not! I gained a community, a healthy lifestyle, and an opportunity to travel the world to share what so many people and I love most.
Who or what has been your mentor/inspiration along the way?
My mother – for showing me how to live life in awe and for always having a sense of wonder. My teacher Ron Reid – for teaching me to never carry the weight of the world on my shoulders. Simply shrug it off. Nature is most definitely a place I always go to for inspiration. It teaches me about being still, being present, flowing, forgiving, and giving.
In three words or less, what’s the best part of your job?
Travel. Space. Community.
In three words or less, what’s the worst part of your job?
Love it all.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Flight attendant. I wanted to be everywhere at once.
What is your drink of choice?
Watermelon juice! I just can’t have enough of it. If only it was available all year round.
Where was the last place you traveled?
Peru – crossed Machu Picchu off my bucket list! Bolivia – got stranded in the deserted salt flats for an entire day before being rescued.
What’s on your play list right now?
What are your top three reads vis a vis your career (books, magazines, manuals, podcasts)?
The Mirror of Yoga by Richard Freeman
Happiness: A Guide to Developing Life’s Most Important Skill by Matthieu Ricard (Watch his TED Talk here).
Any advice for someone who’s looking to lock down their f*#king awesome job?
Be present for when the door opens.
What does the future behold for your f*#king awesome job?
Who knows? With an awesome job, the possibilities are endless.
I want to insert a HUGE caveat here AND now. I did not come up with this column name, my favourite, now deceased magazine – Readymade – did. It was one of my favourite columns in the DIY mag. I hope to emulate their ethos here (the questions are from my brain with a bit of audience testing from friends/family). As an introvert and general lover of the human race, I am inspired by people who LOVE their jobs. So I thought I would dedicate some space on the world wide web to profiling people who have f*#king awesome jobs: who they are, how they got there and what advice would they give others.