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You know when someone asks you to do something and you can’t understand why they don’t see how busy you already are? It feels like life is moving too fast and you can’t catch your breath. It can also feel lonely if it goes on for a long time: just you executing task after task because you feel like you don’t have time to change things.

It’s fair to say this experience is not “Blissful”.

What if I told you while trying to learn a new skill, I figured out how to make that feeling stop! Curious?

My story begins when I arrived in Bali 6 years ago on sabbatical, I was 39 and burnt-out. While working and living in Dubai for 4 years my health was not cooperating with me. This article is not about my burnout recovery but transformation of a different kind. For those that need background, my burnout was caused by a Celiac disease, Hypothyroidism, and Adrenal Fatigue.

Upon arrival in Bali, I enrolled in a 30-day, 200-hour yoga teacher training program. I did this not to be a teacher but because I didn’t think it was responsible to take a break from work and not accomplish something. If you can relate, please give yourself a hug, we are allowed to do nothing sometimes, please remember that.

Jennifer Doheney

This month-long journey was a stone on the pathway to me finding my bliss. I now proudly teach yoga among other things and own a corporate wellbeing company. This training was the first of six I have now completed. Life is full of surprises!

The first time someone asked me to ask myself ‘Why are you here?’—as in, ‘Why am I alive?’—it was my introduction to meditation. What went through my head? ‘OMG, do people really do this?’ I was not much of a philosopher back then—LOL.

Let me tell you how a blind date, random strangers, and a hairdresser helped me find my bliss – Meditation.

Post YTT, I realized I liked a lot more than just Asana, the physical practice of yoga. I loved yogic breathing, the life philosophies, and was VERY curious about meditation. I had no idea “why I was here” but I did know that the benefits of meditation sounded fabulous – “more gray matter and more wisdom”.

But unfortunately, like many before me, sitting still with my eyes closed and ‘just being’ was VERY HARD.

Jennifer Doheney

A blind date in Bali turned out to be a meditation nudge more so than a love match. This man found meditation and was getting downloads from what he called the universe and created a very profitable business for himself. He swore it was meditation that changed his life. A small sign I needed to keep trying, but still no success.

Over the next months I met people from all walks of life, men and women of all ages. But there seemed to be an obvious theme presenting itself to me. Everyone was meditating and they all couldn’t stop talking about it and how much it had changed their lives. I convinced myself it would happen for me eventually and continued to work on the craft - still unsuccessfully.

Then I met a hairdresser. On her counter at the salon, she had a sign that read, ‘Book an appointment with me; I’m clairvoyant.’ For anyone who does not know what this means: they receive messages from another realm about other people—me, apparently, if I paid $125 USD. ‘Why not?’ I thought. ‘It will be an experience.’

We had a session the following week. It started off with a lot of talking, then I lay on my back in a very beautiful home and she told me to say the word LOVE as I inhaled and then count on my exhale.

LOVE (inhales), ONE (exhale), LOVE (inhale), TWO (exhale)…

I was instructed to do this 10 times then repeat. I did as requested. Then I woke up from what felt like deep rest. I assumed it had been a few minutes but I’d been in bliss for over half an hour. I popped up and looked over at my relaxed clairvoyant journaling peacefully. (I later found out that it was her ‘messages about me’. I’ll keep that part to myself). You know what happened I got my own download!

I asked urgently for a piece of paper so it didn’t slip away. Information about life, next steps, ideas, you name it. I said “OMG it happened I was in a meditative state!”. Her reply was a big silent smile. She knew how hard I had been trying. “WOW that was awesome!” and in my head I thought – worth every penny. I could not wait to do it again and now I had a method!

Unfortunately, I did not experience this again for another 6 months. Every morning, I went to the beach around sunrise, empty belly, did not check my phone messages, as instructed by all the Gurus. I set my timer for 10 minutes. I could not focus, mostly because I was starving and worried someone from home had messaged me, and had to start again. I achieved some relaxation but not the same deep rest.

I realized over time the word LOVE worked with my magical clairvoyant but did not sit well with me afterwards. I tried various other words, breathing techniques, music, no music. I even tried different ways of sitting and holding my hands.

Then one morning, I woke up and decided to eat breakfast, nothing big but the rumbling belly was not my vibe. I also looked at my phone, only to check for urgent messages from family and friends. One “I love you” from my mom, one “I miss you” from my friend. Not bad 😊

Jennifer Doheney

I jumped on my scooter and went to the beach, found my spot and decided not to set the timer. I closed my eyes and held my hands in the confidence mudra and began listening to light music, first a little breathing then saying a series of words, a personalized mantra if you will.

In what seemed like almost no time, I found myself in ‘a bubble’. I felt no pain, no discomfort. I remember thinking at that moment ‘I did it!’. And yes, for those of you that do not meditate you can have thought in your meditation without breaking it. Then I felt this very strong energy; like a hug. The feeling I was not alone. And for whatever reason, I felt like I was meeting my spirit for the first time.

I do not ascribe to a specific religion. I started to tear, not because I was sad but because I was relieved. I felt I had company and I’d probably not been alone, ever. I felt disappointed I had been so disconnected with myself at first but this feeling quickly passed and became gratitude. Gratitude I was not alone, gratitude I felt no pain, gratitude I had found my BLISS – Meditation.

What followed were slower days and happier days. It’s like the space between someone speaking and me being able to react seemed larger. I could breathe easily. I could change my situation. My lesson was that the outside world wasn’t moving too fast all those months earlier; it was only a reflection of what was going on with me internally. Simple but eye-opening.

In summary, meditation over time can help your gray matter grow and help you tap into your inner wisdom, but it also helps you feel a great sense of comfort and most importantly, not alone.

Meditation is worth learning. There are many ways to find a successful meditation practice; it does not need to be in the morning on an empty belly, for example. There are at least 7 methods you can try to find out what works for you. You can also mix and match like me!

Jennifer Doheney

This is my company, WELLOGA. We create corporate wellness strategies and programs (yes, yoga and meditation but lots more too).

I also created an 8-week self-led course so anyone can learn how to slow down and learn to meditate, which you can check out by clicking here.

If you just want to talk to me, I’d love that. I’m simply a Canadian gal who found her BLISS when she least expected it and it changed her life forever. I hope it can do the same for you.

Follow Jennifer on Instagram!

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