Hey, there! I'm Tara and I've been hesitant to start this blog for years. I've thought about hundreds of potential posts but always stopped short of writing them. Partially because I'm a perfectionist and I always thought each idea could use a bit more time to marinate in my brain-juice (this is a technical term, trust me, I'm a neuroscientist), but mostly because I never wanted to open myself up to potential criticism.
Let's get this straight: I am completely and utterly over opinionated (see photo right as I am probably judging someone at NY Fashion Week a few years back, note the furrowed brow). And as such, I've found it really difficult to put myself on the chopping block. I read so many blogs and instagram posts and think "geeze, since when is mediocrity like this celebrated?" (mind you, I don't actually say these things, I just think them real hard). And I can be HARSH. I mean, that's something I'm actively working on, but in the meantime, while imperfect souls like myself and millions of internet trolls who actually vocalize/materialize these mean-ass thoughts run rampant out here in these virtual streets, why would I put myself out there?
Let's get this straight, my goal is NOT to pretend that I'm livin' this flawless life, or to build some fake-ass yogi persona that people admire or aspire to be like. There's enough people out there spewing inspirational yet damn-near unattainable quotes at you paired with some off-the-wall, perfectly altered and retouched photos. I'm not trying to pretend like I effortlessly run 5 miles everyday, strength train, make avocado face masks and have great tips for you to make your smoothie bowls more textured. Important tangent to follow:
Nor is my goal to pretend like I know more about anything than hundreds and thousands of experts out there, whether it be neuroscience or yoga. I'm doing this for a couple of reasons (in no particular order):
As cheesy as it sounds I really do believe in the the old Latin proverb "docendo discimus," "by teaching, we learn." One of the best ways to see if you truly understand something is to teach it to someone else. In what's been dubbed as the “the protégé effect,” students who are told they'll be teaching material they're learning score higher on tests than students who are learning only for their own sake, even without having to teach anything. It's basically a paradigm shift that moves you from a basic understanding to a more holistic one. But I'm not saying I know everything about any given topic, I'm just trying to make sense of the world around me and consolidate my knowledge, know what I mean?
- I'm partially doing this because (queue the sad violin solo) when I was growing up, I never saw examples of people who look like me doing the things that I'm doing now. I've always been a brown face in a white place, and likely will continue to be, given the spaces I navigate. There's something I like about contributing to the billions of semi-useless, narcissistic blogs created by my generation and adding my voice as a black woman raised by a single mother on the southside of Chicago. Statistically speaking, I should NOT be where I am today, but I'm damn proud of what I've accomplished and I'm not done yet. As the Simones' performances (#blackexcellence) in the Rio 2016 Olympics have proven, representation matters. So I'm here to sprinkle a little diversity in this yoga/fitness blogger party (and I mean diversity of opinion as well, there's a lot of bs and wishy-washy science out there in the fitness world, so I'd like to add my science-spin and my sense of humor to the game, yogi's can be so damn uptight!).
- But most importantly, I'm doing this because it's about damn time I put my money where my mouth is. Instead of sitting back, talking shit and complaining that I could do it better, I'm doing it. I'm trying to turn what tends to be downtime into something productive and investing it back into learning about myself and the world around me. And I'm twirling on my haters because if you're sitting there doing the same thing I used to do and talking shit, COME FIGHT ME THEN! Jk, if you're sitting there criticizing, why not be more constructive with your feedback and give me some suggestions instead? As the wise @thatsaboysname commented @ me on instagram:
Don't really know why I felt the need to defend my right to start a blog (kidding, I do, I'm an introspective ex-psych major. It's because so many people clutter the internet with narcissistic blogs like this and I feel I have to prove that I maybe possibly deserve a voice in the blogosphere), but now I've gotten that out the way I'm good to go.
In summary: "I am deliberate and afraid of nothing" - Audre Lorde
...JK, I'm shitting myself re: opening myself up to potential criticism and the fact I'm about to make a bunch of mistakes, but at least I'm tryin'!