Voices of Youth Inspire! "A career is seen on how to make a living and not a life that allows one to be of service to something greater than themselves."
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Please tell us your name: Jules Febre
And your age: 30
Where are you originally from and where do you currently live?
Born and raised in New York City and currently living… in New York City.
According to your business card – what’s your job
And how does that compare with what you wanted to do when you were 10 years old?
I do not really remember what I wanted to do when I was 10. I do remember always wanting to be “with” people and that is exactly what I do now.
Give us 10 words that describe your typical work day?
Trying to see and serve the highest potential in every person I meet.
In a nutshell, how did you get to where you are right now? Name some of the most important milestones.
I got to where I am now by the influence of my friends, family and my teachers, each adding a different ingredient and perspective to my world view.
Growing up in the Lower East Side of Manhattan will always play a large role in how I view the world.
At age 13 I traveled to India with my uncle to study and practice yoga.
In 2005 I started teaching yoga in community recreational centers, youth development programs and a high school in NYC.
In 2007 I started teaching in Japan.
In 2009 I taught on the White House Lawn.
In 2010 I taught in Kenya, including in Lakipia (large animal preserve started by Kuki Gallman and featured in the movie “I dreamed of Africa”), Kibera (the largest slum in Kenya) and with Africa Yoga Project in Nairobi.
What was the biggest obstacle you had to overcome to get to your current position and how did it help you to grow as a person?
My largest obstacle was myself. My inconsistencies, my ego and shyness or over zealousness. By reflecting on my own behavior it gave the ability to understand others more clearly and be able to empathize and cultivate the most important aspect to communication… patience… with myself and others.
How important was your choice of degree/field of study at university for what you’re doing now?
I went to university to study mathematics. I did not finish my degree. However math has always been a strong point for me in all of my studies. The ability to look at problems logically and with a sense of even mindedness is incredibly important for teaching of any sort. Being practical and grounded is especially important for teaching about what could be lofty ideas. How and why things work is always in the forefront of my mind.
What are the top three things someone needs to excel in your field?
The great teachers Shri Krishnamacharya said you need 3 things to be a great teacher:
1. A sincere love of people
2. A steady personal practice
What do you think is the MOST important thing governments and/or companies can do to help young people get started in their careers?
Foster creativity and understanding by promoting dialogues between people of vastly different careers, too often importance is placed on business, law or becoming a doctor. A career is seen on how to make a living and not a life that allows one to be of service to something greater than themselves.
On a lighter note, tell us about the strangest day you’ve ever had at work or the strangest thing you had to do?
Strange? I probably have a lot of strange days as a yoga teacher in comparison to what other people do for work. One that stands out is when I was teaching in the Nairobi Arboretum. The Arboretum was also home to Sykes’ monkeys. While teaching the class I had to also patrol all of the belongings, as the monkeys were adept at stealing food or bags. I spent half the class chasing monkeys and the other half teaching yoga!
Some words to youth out there: What advice can you give them when chasing their dream position?
Spend more time on contemplating who you want to be as a person and allow that you put you in the right position.
Photo: Marlis Momber (headshot)