I never really know how to describe who I am on these “About Me” pages, so I thought I would share with you the story that led me to founding Pura Vida Soul Institute. I was raised by traditional, hard working, parents that instilled in me a strong work ethic and a desire to help others. However, growing up in a small farming community my childhood dream was always to make it on my own in the big city away from the smells and chores of farming. I did make it to the big city, and I found that high-powered, well-paying job that I had always dreamed of. I thought I had finally made it life. But after several years working around the clock, commuting for hours, spending more time at work and in front of computers than with people I loved, my health slowly began to dwindle. I was still in my mid-twenties but my hair started to fall out, my stomach was always in knots, I had a nagging pain in my neck that would not go away, and I could barely keep my eyes open as soon as I left the office. Sure, I was getting all of the perks of traveling for work, having an expendable income, and feeling important, but it was not enough. There was still something missing.
On Thanksgiving weekend 2008, I received my wake-up call in the form of a five-car pile-up on one of the busiest highways heading out of the city of Toronto. In a moment, I saw my life flash before my eyes and although I walked away with only a few bumps and bruises, my relationship with work would never be the same. To make matters worse, only three short months later, my husband was also in a car accident at work. He had stopped to help out at a car accident and had just returned to his vehicle when he was hit by a semi-truck. Thankfully, he too escaped with just a few bumps and bruises, but the universe could not be more clear. It was time for us to make a change in our lifestyle!
Soon after, I began my “exit strategy” from the corporate world. I started looking for work closer to home and thought I should also look at becoming an entrepreneur in case the job options were slim. Thankfully, I did find a job closer to home that was much less stressful and eventually afforded me the opportunity to return to school to begin studying my PhD in adult education. These doctorate studies allowed me to explore the stress and burnout I had experienced more deeply, and the more I learned the more I discovered that there were alternative ways to overcome that stress that were much less drastic than quitting your job and moving away! I became deeply involved in learning about contemplative practices, mindfulness, spirituality, yoga, meditation, intuition, metaphysics, and many other related subjects as I attempted to heal myself and return to my true purpose in life.
So after almost 8 years working in the corporate world as an adult educator, presenter, and project manager I am now able to combine the skills and experience I gained from the “real world” with the incredibly healing properties of alternative holistic practices. As I have advanced in my doctoral studies, I have examined more closely how these holistic practices can reduce stress and burnout, eliminate illnesses, increase confidence and happiness, improve decision-making skills, increase performance at work and school, reconnect people to their passion, and help people find more balance in their lives. I am so excited about this research and have had nothing but life-changing transformations as I have worked with other researchers, teachers, healers, shaman, and everyday people to discover how we can incorporate them into everyday experiences like yoga, workshops, teaching environments, and adult education classrooms. My life is devoted to exploring these realities more deeply while sharing and teaching some of the most effective techniques to others right now.
I currently teach upwards of 5-6 yoga classes per week to busy professionals at local yoga studios in Barrie, Ontario and am in the process of developing an online program to help professionals reduce their stress, find peace of mind, and reconnect with their soul’s purpose. I am also available for private consultations with individuals who wish to explore some of the inner blocks, limiting beliefs, or potential life purposes through therapy, art, and movement. I also regularly speak at conferences, conventions, and shows through Ontario and am available for group and organizational workshops and trainings. (And yes, I still hold down a full-time job at the moment – so I feel your pain!).
So that is how I ended up here. I cannot predict where I will be tomorrow, but I can guarantee that I am heading towards more light, love, and happiness and can’t wait to share it with you! Please feel free to get in touch with me anytime at [email protected] or find me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/KavanaghJenn
Summary of Gifts & Qualifications
- 8 Years experience as a corporate trainer and adult educator in various settings
- Yoga Teacher (200hr RYT with Yoga Alliance)
- Developed Smelly Yogaroma and other innovative yoga and stress-reduction programs
- Renowned Speaker at Conferences, Conventions, and Shows
- Graduate of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program
- Completed workshops in contemplative pedagogy, holistic learning, and intuitive development
- Certified Training & Development Professional (CTDP)
- PhD Student in Adult Education with Walden University
- Student of Transpersonal Counseling
- Masters in Learning from the University of Southern Queensland
- BA, Honors Psychology from the University of Waterloo
- Practicing Vegetarian (19+ Years)
- Wife, woman, goddess warrior
- World Traveler