“Rising” to the Magickal Awareness of You – Interview with Epona Rise Retreat Centre’s Founder, Hillary Schneider
I love hearing about, connecting to, and co-creating this beautiful new paradigm with other visionaries. So many amazing souls are shining their lights these days within the creative and healing arts world and it is these very souls that are paving the way to a new reality that not only is focused on authentic self-expression, but weaves co-creative community, love, and rhythms of natural harmony into the collective frequency field.
We’re about to meet another of these super-inspiring souls in today’s guest interview.
Hillary Schneider is an amazing, heart-based soul that is sharing powerful work through her own unique gifts. I feel so blessed to know Hillary and from the instant we connected online, it’s been a beautiful and synchronous flow that we know is simply a reconnection continuing on.
We are all reuniting with soul families these days and it is increasingly, more rapidly, and more instantaneously taking place with conscious awareness. Why? Because we are, together, integral threads to what is collectively being woven as a new reality. And that recognition, implemented into action, is the foundation for shifts we are creating.
Hillary and I connected, as I said, via the web. She found me online and followed a nudge to reach out. I, in turn, reciprocated, feeling something amazing there energetically between us just from onset of reading/feeling the energy in her email. Shortly after, we connected via telephone and it was such a beautiful resonance of family, through hearing and feeling resounding expressions and experiences. During the course of our “reconnecting”, we have come to find so many parallels between our experiences, much in common, and a ton of magickal synchronicities.
And, no sooner did we connect, did it become evident we would be co-creating and collaborating together.
Very soon we will be sharing our venture together, which is looking to be in the summer of 2014. So stay tuned for an upcoming announcement on a special retreat in British Columbia at Epona Rise Retreat Centre that we will be offering from our hearts and the horse’s hearts to yours, in likely June of next year. I’m overflowing with joy and love about this for many reasons, and have already been connecting with Hillary’s beautiful horse family there in my wake and dream experiences.
But today’s post is focused on this star-light, Hillary, who is beautifully weaving her love in service.
Along with her many years and extensive background in working with horses, Hillary has also received intense and in-depth training in both the Co-active coaching and leadership model through the Coach Training Institute, and the equine experiential learning field through Horse Spirit Connections in the art of FEEL. Both trainings have aided Hillary in her development as a gifted facilitator and helped her blossom in her unique skills as leader who is intuitive, wise, gentle, calm and fierce! Hillary is strongly committed and passionate in her partnership with the wise and incredible teachings of the horses. She is grateful and honored to be engaged in this sacred union with the horses and is excited at the opportunity to bring their teachings out into the lives of others through the space that has been created at Epona Rise.
Tania: Did you always know what you wanted to do in life and if so, when did you first have that clarity?
Hillary: I knew from an early age that my purpose would involve horses in some capacity but I didn’t know exactly how that would manifest. I also know I was born, in some extent, being aware that I was here to fulfill a purpose and that this form that I was in was not “it” and there was a reason for me being here. The horses came into my life early on and have been a guiding light from very young. That, coupled with a strong knowing and desire to be on purpose in some capacity, helped draw me to my purpose and clarity on what it was I was meant to do during my time on earth.
Tania: I find your work to be so unique and a beautiful expression of you. Can you share a little bit about what you do and what you find enriching about it, both for self and others?
Hillary: Loaded question. I will try not to write an essay 🙂 I run a retreat centre where I support others on their path of growth, discovery and awakening all through the way of the horse. The horses are my partners in the facilitation of others, I call them access points or gateways, they provide a really powerful space of reconnection for us to remember who it is we are and begin to rediscover and heal our relationship with our inner voice, spirit, and help us ground into a purpose that is uniquely ours. From my own process of self growth and discovery I have found that not much compares to the power and wisdom of the horse, they just create this really powerful space for us to really see ourselves, our brilliance and connect to who we are in a way that just transcends all boundaries that we may have that has kept us from really tuning into ourselves. For me personally I have always felt most grounded and aware of myself when I was with the horses – the clarity, depth and knowing and touching the depth of who I am has come from being with them. They have also helped me with my own struggle of being in the body and learning how to embrace my humanity and also take claim of the gifts I have brought with me during this lifetime. I have watched others that have come into their space just transform and become so much more present in themselves and empowered in who they are when they are with the horses. What I love most about being with them is that they really help us awaken to our own inner wisdom and remembering that all the answers we have are within us, our intuitive senses sharpen, and we begin to learn how to be in flow with nature and our own cycles. They also provide a loving non-judgmental space for us to see ourselves in a way that feels really safe and sacred for people to be vulnerable and open during the process. Horses are so intuitive and cannot be lied to, in that way they provide such a pure and honest mirror for ourselves, which some people are afraid of because they fear they will only see bad. This is so not true. The beauty of the horse is that they mirror our brilliance. We do a good enough job putting ourselves down and painting distorted images of who we are. The horses remind us of our own purity of spirit which is really beautiful to witness in others as they come into the space with the horse.
Tania: Please tell us a little about your background and training in both Co-active coaching and leadership and how this partners with your equine training in the synergy of the services you offer at Epona Rise Retreat Centre.
Hillary: I was fortunate to grow up in a house where personal growth and development was valued, and with my Dad being a leader and teacher for CTI – Coach Training Institute (one of the top training institutes for personal and professional coach development) – I grew up in a culture and space that really fostered an empowered state of being in relationship. We were always encouraged to express ourselves and were listened to in those expressions. It was actually through my training with CTI in 2006 that I was led to this way of being with the horses. I had just recently left what I thought would be my career of being a horse breeder and was lost as to how I would come to be with the horses. When I was taking the courses I became aware of coaching with horses and the rest was history. I find the coaching will help support people in their process and the tools I learned on how to powerfully empower others has fit beautifully with what the horses naturally do for people. The leadership program really helped me understand who I was as a leader and what my unique gifts that I bring into the space are. It helped me really know my impact which has given me the space to help others do the same. The beauty of the horse is that they help us really integrate the learning on such a deep level and also provide us with instant feedback so we are able to really see, feel, sense and know who we are being and showing up as in each moment. The Co-Active coaching model aligns with what I do with the horses because it is all about seeing people as creative resourceful and whole, and being partners in the work and equals in the process. It is seeing people and knowing that they have all the answers within and there is nothing to be fixed and no solution that needs to come from anyone other than the person. It is empowering them in their own wisdom, greatness and resourcefulness which is what the horses really want for us. To be authentic, congruent and empowered in who we are and knowing that we are so much more than what we think and there is so much available to us within ourselves.
Hillary: Epona Rise Retreat Centre is a life long dream come manifest. I have always wanted to live on a farm and have a retreat centre. I didn’t always know what I wanted to do there, but I always felt that this was a space I was meant to create. It has been a vision I have held for many years and this particular space we are on now came about quite magically! I moved out to BC (British Columbia, Canada) from Ontario, two years ago, after feeling a strong pull that I needed to be out here. Before that time I had been doing the work with the horses out of other facilities until it was time to have my own space. Within a year of being out here I felt the push that it was time to find the space to run the work full time. And so I got really clear on what I needed for the space, allowing the horses to provide their input as well and I put it out there. Within a month a friend drove me to a farm that she thought I would love, which I did but I didn’t have two million dollars to buy, so driving away from the farm that day I said, “ok peeps, if it is meant to happen help make it happen.” Within another two months I received an email from the real estate agent I was working with that she heard of a place that came up for lease and low and behold it was the very same farm. The power of manifestion and intention setting! That was a year ago and after I manifested the space I went from 1 to 5 horses, the horses I have with me were donated or given to our program because they can’t be ridden anymore due to injury, or old age. The work we do with them here is all done on the ground being in the space with the horses, so it was also a way to give the horses a second purpose and to help shift the consciousness of how we hold them. About a month before I was to move onto the space I spent three days in meditation, in nature and with the horses on finding the name of the space that was to be. I find names such a symbolic and powerful thing so I wanted to really create some awareness and feel into the space that was being created. “Epona” came in strongly. She is the Celtic goddess of horses and I really felt that my mission on earth was in such deep resonance with what she represented. I feel like I am fulfilling a purpose that aligns to her energy with horses, women, children, nature and the earth. She was a beautiful symbol to pay homage too. “Rise” comes from “moon rise” and wanting to provide a space where people rise to the consciousness and awareness that they were meant to and rise above the mundane to experience something profound and magical! That is how the space came to be. This is our first setting. There is a bigger property that I hope to call my own one day that will be our home sometime in the future so stay tuned for that!
Tania: What is it about the horses that you feel makes them such powerful teachers, or better yet, as you put it, “co-facilitators”? Please share about how they play a role in the healing at Epona Rise.
Hillary: I have touched on that a little bit and just to expand some more, as prey animals they have a natural heightened sensitivity and intuition to what is happening in their space. They are able to discern and connect to what we are holding within us that we are sometimes and most often not even connected to. They have a purity of vision and connection to energy, emotion, and what is happening to us internally and they mirror that and interact with people according to what they pick up and feel the person is needing. They are honored in the work as teacher. They are co-facilitator and we work together to help support a person in their process. I look to them to guide me and they will look to me to help translate and be messenger for what they are trying to communicate with others. Everything I do here is in partnership with them, from the programs I run to each session I facilitate, I am in constant communication with them and co-creation. They guide the space as much as, if not more than, I do in some capacity. They are aware of things before I am. I joke that I am often the last one to be privy to what is going on:) What is so amazing about this work is that I am blown away every time. What I watch them do with people is amazing. I never know what is going to happen in a session or workshop because I can’t predict what they are going to pick up on or how they are going to respond to each individual, that is the beauty of it, it is so present-moment-unfolding. There is a deep trust between us in the process and a real intuitive flow to what is going on. I really allow them to dictate and lead what we do with someone and how that is going to unfold and my part is creating the space for them to shine in their gifts and purpose in helping us awaken to ours. They are truly amazing animals and I feel deeply blessed and honored that I get to co-create and live in partnership with them.
Hillary: Yes I have, always. More so than people, animals have always felt more kin to me than humans. I remember most of my childhood was spent pretending to be a horse or acting like one! They have been my companions in life and so deeply part of my growth and also safety in a human world that has often felt harsh. I feel like my soul is very intertwined with the animal kingdom, they are my messengers, my guides, my teachers, my strength and are a big part of me being who I am today. They have truly been a saving grace in my life and a place I have found comfort in very dark places in my life. What I love about the space with the horses that is created here is that it creates an opening for the other animals to come and have their wisdom be shared. We often have eagles, herons, birds, my dog and cat that will take part in sessions here, as well, and become integrated into the teachings for others who come here. Every animal here, or that shows up, is witnessed, heard and received as teachers and wisdom keepers.
Tania: What would you consider is the mission you are creating the space for at Epona Rise and are there any programs that you especially love and people that you feel especially called to serve?
Hillary: My mission and an anchor for me with Epona is really honoring and fullfillment of purpose. It is a space that provides fulliment of the purpose of the horse and of myself. My hope is to help others connect with my clarity to theirs. Honoring each person’s unique journey, and honoring every person, animal, and being in their voice, in their wisdom, in their strength and teaching others to do the same. I am particularly called to help people whether that be women, children, or men in awakening to their purpose, and living a life that is in alignment with their unique truth. Working with sensitive people, especially youth and young adults, is another area that I feel especially called to serve. The horses have taught me so much about my sensitivity, how to honor it, and how to be with it in a world that often feels really overwhelming at times. They have taught me about grounding, sacred space and boundaries and how to be true to who I was. There is also a resonance to work with those that are struggling to be in human form, as this was a big part of my own journey. There is a reason why we are in a human body and the horses taught me how to honor and embrace this, and to heal my relationship with humanity. This is who I want to help and the horses have been such a powerful teacher and space for this. I do think though that everyone can benefit from the horses and trust that whoever is meant to come into the space will be led here!
Tania: What is a typical day at Epona Rise like for you?
Hillary: There is no such thing 🙂 haha! Typical day…well there are daily chores that have to get done everyday so my morning usually is feeding the horses hay and connecting in with them, making sure they have had a good night, and everyone is well. Good way to get grounded first thing in the morning too! Then I will either move into a walk with my dog, and then sessions, or if I don’t have sessions in a day I usually spend it writing, or spending time on the business. Typically I will schedule 2 sessions a day, about 4-5 days a week, – maxium 3. Each individual session with the horses are 90 minutes in length. Then late afternoon there is another feeding with the horses where they will get their grain, fed hay, and I usually clean out their shelter, and again spend some time out in nature and in their space grounding from the day. Each day is a bit different and I really just flow with the currents of the day. At least 1-2 weekends a month we hold workshops with the horses as well. Then there is always yard care and house care in there as well 🙂 I also spend some time at the end of each day meditating and journaling before I head to bed for the night and tune into any intentions or energy I wish to create on the space.
Tania: To me, you are a shining example of exactly why I enjoy doing these interview articles – a courageous soul who is living her dream and following the authenticity of her heart. I applaud you and honor the beautiful way in which you have woven your intentions into the manifestation of your heart’s calling. Can you please share how you have been able to turn your dreams into a reality and what advice you would like to gift others that you have found to be the most valuable along your journey to create this?
Hillary: Great question and thank you!! I am so passionate about this because my desire is to inspire others that it is possible to live a life that is in alignment with your purpose and you can live a life of your dreams. For me, perseverance and holding the vision has been key. I held onto this vision with a vice grip – it’s what got me through the times when I didn’t know how, when, where, why and felt lost and just persevering on the path. Knowing that this step will get me to where it is I am meant to go, even if it didn’t seem so at the time. Letting yourself dream is a huge one too! We don’t allow ourselves to dream enough or dream big. I spend a lot of time creating dreams, vision boards, dream boxes… it is part of a ritual that I do at least every 3 months – putting intentions out into the space and just taking steps towards those dreams, following urges, intuitive guidance, and taking action when I feel guided. Faith and trusting the process is also important, which I am not always so great at! It is hard, but there is always some part of me that believes! Also, surrounding yourself with people that support and empower you in your dreams and reminding you of your beauty, strength and wisdom. That is huge! I am so grateful for the people in my life that have really helped me and supported me in the process, and continue to do so. Give yourself the freedom to dream, be bold in your dreams and your actions, take a leap of faith!! I moved out to BC without any idea of why, or a job, or anything, and just trusted that I was meant to be here. I think really what has worked powerfully for me is a combination of connecting in with my heart and spirit and setting intentions, and then taking action in the physical, asking for help, and big and deep gratitude to my peeps ( who I call my helpers in the unseen ). Prayer and surrender are just as powerful as well! And just keep going. Don’t lose hope. A big one for me was “don’t quit right before the miracle occurs.” And to remember just because we can’t see things happening doesn’t mean there is not something occurring beneath the surface. I love that image of a carrot growing underground. It takes time to nourish something into the light and we have to sometimes be patient with that process and learn how to enjoy the journey along the way!
Tania: What inspires you the most in life and really gets your heart pumping?
Hillary: Great question!! Gosh this is hard to answer, life inspires me! Being on a path that is so aligned with purpose is inspiring. Nature and the horses inspire me and I think the search or seeking of knowing the depth of myself and of others, and watching and being a witness to the awakening of our spirits. Music and dance, and what is coming up for me is the whales. I love love love being out on the water and being in the space with these amazing animals. They inspire me. I feel so in awe of their presence and bigness. I think if I wasn’t doing the work with the horses I would want to be out in the water with the whales! My family inspires me, my friends and community, and the people that have come here to experience the horses always create such joy for me. Deep connections and connecting with others has been rich. I am inspired by the simple, ordinary, and extraordinary experiences in life, and within all that we walk through life with.
Tania: If there was only one thing you could tell all little girls and boys just embarking on their life journeys, about what you have found to be the most important piece of information that has changed your life, what would you tell them?
Hillary: That you are never too young to be know who you are, and what your purpose is, and that there is nothing wrong with who you are. You are a unique and beautiful soul. Don’t ever forget that. Hang onto your dreams like they were precious gems and know that you have wisdom inside of you that is so needed, is valued, and is meant to be shared. You don’t have to live a whole life here to be of service, or to know things that will serve us, the planet, and humanity. You are worthy. Follow your heart, ask for help, and believe in yourself and your dreams. Stay true to you. All will be well. Trust the process and don’t give up on the dreams of your heart!
And thank YOU, Hillary, for sharing and living from your heart’s dreams that you have made a reality. You are truly an inspiration to us all.
You can learn more about and contact Hillary for her services here:
Founder and Creative Director
Epona Rise Retreat Centre
World Bridger & Eclectic Creator – An Inspiring Interview with Visionary Intuitive Healer & Artist Jennifer Helminski
Today circles round to another inspiring guest interview from my series of creative and healing arts visionaries. I love seeing people overcoming and moving through challenges, integrating their lives, digging deep into the well of authenticity, and bringing that forth as a manifestation of their natural expression.
Everyone has a unique and beautiful story to share that many can relate to. While our stories are unique to us, we all process the same, collectively shared energetic themes. How they translate or feel are relative to each, but they all demonstrate the powerful resiliency of the soul and our capabilities of creating unlimited potentials when we align with our hearts.
I’m loving how more and more people are creating their own definition of what work to them is – an expression of love from within, shared out of joy, which becomes authentic service in flowing harmony. And that can take on many continuously evolving forms that never need to, nor will fit into any box. Visionaries are sharing a new way, which is constantly expressing and sharing the abundant creative energy that we all are, simply because we know nothing else but to do so.
I’m excited about today’s guest, Jennifer Helminski, as she is such an eclectic soul who is creating each day by heart. I find a ton of similarities and resonance with her multi-faceted self-expression and the way she incorporates all of who she is into all of what she shares. In hearing people’s stories a beauty of connection is revealed and reflected that bridges our hearts. We come to realize how much we share with others and how truly connected we are – there is no separation, isolation, or loneliness in our experience. There are many kindred brothers and sisters all sharing this journey and all supporting one another simply by blazing their trail.
And blazing her creatively inspired trail, Jennifer is.
The world-wide web is an amazing place to connect with souls globally and it is this vehicle of communication that connected Jennifer and I a few years ago. It’s been a synchronous reflection and resonance since, and I have been grateful to reconnect with this sweet, magical and powerful soul. I’ve especially been enjoying watching her blossom and to see all the beauty that is flowing from her. I am also deeply honored to have been able to actually meet her in person for the first time last month to support her with her Reiki Master Teacher training. A beautiful activation takes place in these encounters of reconnections. It’s always never felt for me to be a hindrance to live distantly from the souls I relate to, work with, connect with, and love, but it is a beautiful thing when you do physically solidify that feeling into the flesh.
While you may not come to meet Jennifer in person, I do feel you will come to know and connect with her through her expressive sharings and feel a kinship to her mirroring journey of co-creating this experience with you. She has many beautiful gifts to offer and I hope you will explore and celebrate them with her, as we celebrate ourselves through her courageous reflection of personal truth and abundant collective beauty.
Jennifer Helminski Bio:
A North Jersey girl, Jennifer Helminski is a visionary intuitive healer and artist, trained and gifted in various therapeutic, complementary, and spiritual modalities. She is a certified Reiki Master Teacher in the Usui Shiki Ryoho tradition (traditional Reiki as founded by Dr. Mikao Usui), and is also trained in other energy practices such as Integrated Energy Therapy, Matrix Energetics, and Healing Touch for Animals. Jennifer is also an experienced animal caretaker and communicator, and has worked in zoos, veterinary hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and has been privileged to work with dolphins.
Combining compassion and wise, heart-centered communication, Jennifer loves working with people and animals in order to facilitate healing, growth, relaxation, balanced well-being, and harmonious relationships. She also creates various sacred artworks including paintings and crystal jewelry, as well as channeled writings and other spiritual services.
Jennifer is a cosmic creator of all things sacred and from the heart.
Whether you are already working in the healing and creative arts fields, are in process of cultivating your passions into service, or are starting to explore your heart desires and dreams for the first time, I think you’ll find resonance with Jennifer, as I do. I happen to be wearing my “Seva” tank right now, which basically means “Selfless Service.” Jennifer is a shining example of this way of living.
An Insightful and Inspiring Interview with Jennifer Helminski:
Tania: What are the first things you remember as a child that ignited your heart, how did that evolve for you, and do you find yourself incorporating those things into your current life and expression of your service?
Jennifer: So many different memories come to mind, and they make me smile! From my childhood, I have always loved being out in nature, in connection with the earth and with animals. I grew up having dogs my entire life and, being an only child, they truly were family to me and some of my dearest friends. I was also guided to love and cherish nature by my grandparents who would frequently take me on “treasure hunt” nature walks (many prized pinecones and seashells were collected!) and who would also employ my help in the garden with watering plants and collecting vegetables for dinner! Many of my most magical memories are the ones that took place in their backyard, like learning about the flora that bloomed in their garden and playing with fireflies on warm summer nights. That simple sense of wonder has never left me, and those same things still feel the most magical, most connecting, and most invigorating for me. I feel the most at home when I am in nature, gleefully discovering winding streams and waterfalls in sun-streaked forests. I feel an instant awakening, grounding, and return to my true self when I connect with the earth, and I hope to integrate that power in everything I do, am, and create. Even when I was a child I found myself very drawn to sacred healing arts and to fairies (one of my favorite movies being Fern Gully, for those who remember that one!), fantasizing about living in a tree with my own herbal apothecary, masterfully blending healing potions with my mortar and pestle! Today I still have that fantasy, and am ntegrating more flower, herb, and plant-based healing into my service as I continue to learn about nature’s medicine and messages.
Tania: Have you always known what you wanted to do or has that been a process to uncover? And what, if anything, have you found to be the most challenging stumbling blocks to connecting with who you are at heart?
Jennifer: In a way, I have always known what I wanted to do. The tricky part has always been that I want to do everything! I have often found myself cycling through various facets of my consciousness and expression, and areas in which I feel drawn to explore and engage. One of the first things I ever wanted to be was a paleontologist (I was probably 4 years old when I decided this), but then I also wanted to be a veterinarian, and a geologist, and an archaeologist… Egyptology followed shortly after, and the list goes on. I even wanted to be a priest, and recall being miffed that women weren’t allowed to be priests in the Roman Catholic church in which I was raised. Nowadays, I want to be an astronaut! At my core, I have always been interested in the same things: the earth as a living being and our place in the cosmos, ancient civilizations, animals, crystals/gems, art, healing, science, and spirituality. One of the most challenging things for me has always been in trying to focus my energy and attention in just one area, or picking just one thing to pursue, and I’m beginning to accept that perhaps I am just not wired that way! I operate pretty intuitively, so it’s become a practice of going with the flow and engaging and creating things as they come up day-to-day. It has been a challenge to accept myself working and being in this way, because it doesn’t quite fit in with the norm or the way our society is currently structured. Growing up as someone who doesn’t fit the norm has certainly created its
own opportunities for me to accept and embrace myself for who I am, and being a beacon of that kind of unconditional love (both for myself and all others) is my main goal in this life. If I can manage that, I’ll consider life as Jennifer Helminski to be a great success!
Tania: Which of these would you identify with most if you had to choose – a calculated optimist or a hopeful pessimist? Why? Please share a new creative concept of how you see yourself or how you are working towards being and what you might call that and how that would play out
Jennifer: In general, I would have to say I’m more of a calculated optimist. I do believe that “good” outweighs the “bad”, and that love and light will ultimately prevail! I believe we are awakening and that humanity is evolving into a higher way of being, though the process of shifting takes time to play out. My shadow and light aspects, as well as my left and right brain, have an interesting way of dancing with one another, so I can find myself alternating between believing that I can easily achieve my highest expression, goals, and dreams – and then feeling somewhat defeated or “lost” when things don’t quite come together as I hope or envision. I am definitely working towards being fully accepting, approving, loving, and supportive of myself along my journey and believing fully, on every level, that I can and will live and weave and create the dreams of my heart and spirit! I feel like my current life path is of integrating the wisdom and experience of many previous lives, as well as connecting and harmonizing many different layers of being, so I might like to think of myself as a “worldbridger”, like my Mayan sun sign. Traversing, exploring, and integrating the various “worlds” within myself, worlds in which I have lived, the spirit world, physical world, other worlds in our cosmos, and on.
Tania: What is your greatest fear and how do you think it is supporting your evolution?
Jennifer: My greatest fear is of leaving this earth with my life unlived and my dreams unrealized. There is so much that I want to see, experience, do, and be, and I don’t think I would be satisfied if I didn’t make it happen! I feel like there is so much yet ahead of me that I just have to keep working towards, keeping my dreams alive in my heart and trusting that whatever is meant to be will be. I think the fear of my own life passing me by, and the fear of not actualizing my true potential, helps keep me motivated and moving forward when times get tough or don’t work out the way I hoped. We all encounter these setbacks and bumps on our journeys, but the important thing is to never give up or consider yourself defeated. It’s never too late to make your dreams a reality.
Tania: One of the things I love so much about you, besides your gentle, loving way, is that you are such an eclectic healer and creative soul – something we share. You have so many wonderful gifts (I don’t know quite where to start), can you share a little about the things you do and what you love most about them?
Jennifer: Well, both in my personal life and in my work and service, there are a lot of different things that I do and love. Many of my interests stem from the same core foundation: my love for nature and animals, my creative passion, my desire to return myself and others to our pristine Wholeness, and my thirst for knowledge and adventure! Lots of different things inspire my passion, and I try to connect to and integrate them all into what I do. Work-wise, I offer a lot of different services, and I usually blend them together – including energy healing (Reiki and other modalities), animal communication, channeled and intuitive artworks and writings, sacred jewelry… the list goes on! Lately I’ve taken on the added role of being a volunteer hospice caretaker, which is a true spiritual service for me as I am not only learning how to be even more present and compassionate, but also learning to embrace life and heal my own fears surrounding death and transition. I was searching for more ways to put my Reiki to use, and that is where I wound up. The Universe has made it unequivocally clear that it was meant to be, as well!
Tania: What would you consider your strongest gift and how does this express in your life and work?
Jennifer: Hmm… maybe my stubbornness! I know that doesn’t sound quite right, but I think my stubborn belief in what I am, and what I am meant to be and achieve, has kept me persistently moving forward and going after my dreams, no matter what happens. Perseverance is probably a better word for it! And I don’t just believe in the best for myself, but I believe in the best for others as well. There’s that saying about how we’re all just walking each other home. I think that’s true, and I also think we’re here to awaken and inspire one another, and to motivate each other to be fully present in our lives and actualize our dreams!
Tania: When did you first realize you had the ability to communicate with animals and what is your most memorable experience with this and why?
Jennifer: You know, I don’t think I really knew I could communicate with animals until I attended a weekend seminar on the subject with Carol Gurney of The Gurney Institute of Animal Communication. This was a few years ago, and immediately followed my experience as an intern dolphin trainer in the Florida Keys. That weekend was full of surprising confirmation for me that I was indeed communicating with animals, something which still amazes me. There was one exercise in particular that really shocked me. We were working together in pairs, taking turns communicating with one another’s pets via photographs and looking for concrete information which could be easily validated, such as the animal’s name, age, etc. Well, when it was my turn to communicate with my partner’s Golden Retriever in the picture, I found myself struggling for the intended information. I remember getting frustrated with myself as, in my mind’s eye, I only saw abstract images of an ethereal purple butterfly, and the color green. Time was up, and I was so embarrassed to relay the outcome of the exercise to my partner, convinced that I had failed and couldn’t do it. However, when I told her what I had seen, she immediately became emotional and explained that her other Golden Retriever had recently passed away, and that her collar was green with purple butterflies on it. She used to refer to that dog as her “butterfly girl”, and felt like my vision was a confirmation that her dog’s spirit was still around and taking care of the new dog, who was a rescue. Carol caught wind of my experience and shared it with the group, adding that mediumship was a subject that would be addressed in the more advanced levels of training. She later worked with me privately and had me communicating with her dog, Spirit. I certainly surprised myself with how much I experienced in that short weekend and I know it was only the beginning!
Tania: You are trained in a variety of different energy practices, but would you say that your training was merely a refinement of what was natural to you already? And if so, when did you first realize your natural healing abilities and are there any experiences you remember where you were doing things instinctively that created effective results?
Jennifer: Yes, I would say that rather than really implanting information within me that wasn’t already present, my trainings have instead given me tools and structures that I can utilize and integrate intuitively to channel what I already know in my core. I’m not sure exactly when I knew I was a healer, but I remember imagining and believing even as a child that I could heal with my hands and my spirit. I recall being young and placing my hands over a scar on my knee, closing my eyes and concentrating on fading the scar, and feeling like it appeared less conspicuous afterwards. Or, at some point when I was a teenager, I would sometimes experience intense feelings of having wings coming out of my shoulder blades. I took to placing my hands upon other people’s backs and focusing the energy in my hands so they could feel their “wings” as well. I also remember doing a telepathic chakra clearing and cellular restructuring for my mother, and she reported results to me the following day without knowing I had done it. As my knowledge and wisdom have expanded, my processes have refined themselves. I still operate
intuitively, and I integrate many different modalities and services to create what I feel is a custom-tailored, multifaceted approach to healing transformation which I feel is more fully supportive for the individual’s needs and goals, and has yielded highly positive results.
Tania: Do you find any one particular modality standing out for you in your work, or have you created something unique to you? Explain how this plays out please.
Jennifer: While I think I employ a pretty eclectic blend of services and tools, I use Reiki the most out of all the modalities I have learned. I feel as though it comes the most naturally to me, or perhaps it is just the most in-tune with my natural way of healing. I don’t have to think about how to use Reiki, I can just kind of invite it into my process and the rest just happens
automatically. My work in general is pretty unique to me, I think, as I blend a lot of different things together. My healing sessions typically include all of the following: a channeled energetic artwork for the client including several positive affirmations which are supportive of their
intended goals for the session; energy healing; sound healing (Tibetan singing bowl, tingsha, drumming, rattling, music); working with angels, guides, and masters; vibrational repatterning, releasing negative thought patterns and dis-ease and implanting the desired positive changes; creating unique crystal grids; oracle card readings, and more. I find that this multifaceted approach is more fully supportive for my clients and has consistently yielded excellent results and experiences.
Tania: Alongside all of the beautiful services you provide as an energy healer, animal communicator, oracle card reader, and Reiki Master Teacher, you are also a visionary artist of many hats. Please share about some of the sacred creations you channel and what you love most about this expression of you.
Jennifer: One of the things I most enjoy creating is sacred crystal jewelry. I have always loved crystals, and incorporating them into wearable spiritual tools and reminders is very satisfying for me. My intention, as with all of my creations, is to inspire people, and to remind them of the magic, divinity, and possibility within them and in the world around them. Another particularly
popular creation of mine are my “fairy wish bubbles” – clear glass ornaments filled with sparkly iridescence, glitter, feathers, hearts and the like, with a small scroll of ribbon-tied parchment where you can write or intend a wish or prayer for the fairies to answer. That was inspired by a vision I had of a new form of sacred play/prayer, where one could sit outside in nature, blowing bubbles and lightheartedly sending your wishes and prayers floating into the sky, trusting that the fairies would carry each one to the Divine. There are many other things which are in the process of being creating in the physical world, including healing stuffed animals, various channeled paintings, guided meditations, and more! I love creating in all these different channels because I can access my carefree, creative inner child who knew that everything she created would become real. It’s magical!
Tania: What inspires you the most and is there anything significant that really stokes your fire?
Jennifer: Feeling connected to others really inspires me. I always feel like there’s some kind of
magic that happens when you connect with someone that you really resonate with, someone you feel mirrors you and that you can really openly share with. But one of my all-time favorite things, and something that never fails to brighten my whole day, is when I have an unexpected friendly connection with a complete stranger. You know those moments that just leave you smiling and loving humanity; I always treasure those. Being out in nature, of course, always inspires and energizes me. Or being with dolphins – be still my heart!
Tania: Are there any dreams you have that you are either intending or are currently in process of creating that you’d like to share? Do you feel it is important to dream and what would you say to others who feel hopeless and discouraged?
Jennifer: I believe dreaming is essential to the human experience. We’re born curious, we’re born hungry for discovery, adventure, and greatness. Dreams are what ignite our passions, they motivate us and awaken our drive to achieve incredible things. And you can’t dream too big. If you can imagine it, you can create it. Don’t let anything convince you otherwise. We’re all born as these unique configurations of consciousness and experience, and the things your yearn for and envision are also unique to you. You have a one-of-a-kind song to sing, so please share the music living within you. Even if you’ve struggled your entire life, it’s never too late to start. Among many other contributing experiences, I lost my mom to a decade-long battle with breast cancer when I was 19, so I have spent much of my life dealing with depression and feelings like hopelessness, disconnection, frustration, etc. and all I can say is that those experiences do not bar you from happiness, they do not bar you from fulfillment or living your dreams, or feeling loved. As alone as you might feel, you are not. As futile as every effort might seem, it is not. I know how hard it can be as you try to hold it all together, or make something happen, and things just seem to fall apart. Just keep breathing, reach out for support, and keep moving forward each day, even if just in baby steps. Aim for patience with the process and a positive mindset, and trust that it does all work out in time.
Tania: What do you feel is one of the most valuable and integral keys to living with continual passion and aliveness?
Jennifer: Staying open. Humans are creatures of habit, and it is so easy to feel like we stagnate or get stuck in a rut, stuck in patterns that don’t serve us, situations and relationships in which we aren’t happy and fulfilled, and so on. It is essential to stay tapped into what turns you on, what excites you and makes you hungry for life, experience, adventure, connection. If you don’t know what you’re passionate about, just start trying new things! Put yourself out there and feel like you are in the flow of life. There is no end to what we can discover, learn, create, achieve, and more, so there’s no good reason to stay bored or dispassionate for very long. Make sure your heart is open. Forgive the past and allow the future to be limitless. Live and love freely. Dive into the adventure of life!
Tania: How can others reach you to acquire your services and sacred creations?
Jennifer: My main website, which continuously evolves, is at www.jenniferhelminski.com. There you can read more about me, the services I offer, schedule sessions, and also get news about things like upcoming events and workshops. I am also active with my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/JenniferHelminski, and sell many of my
various creations through my Etsy store at Luna Luxe
Thank you Jennifer for sharing your sacred heart with all of us.
Forging Your Own Dream Life ~ An Inside Look & Interview with Healing Facilitator & Adventure Guide Lynne Day
Today I’m happy to share an inside look and short interview with a visionary leader in her own right, Lynne Day – visionary of passionate living.
I believe that everyone has a unique story that imparts something beautifully inspirational and supportive even if they don’t think that they do. I like to find and reveal the hidden treasures in all people, all of life, and everything in between. 🙂 While living in service so naturally that it is out of thought, but merely a breath is wonderful, I also feel it to be valuable to honor, recognize, and have gratitude for those beautiful gifts. There are seeds of inspiration that when heard, read, seen, or experienced at just the right moment, can help foster the same in others.
This is part of the reason for sharing stories like Lynne’s – to help light that spark for others. I love to also share some of the inside things I have come to see and/or share with each person to offer another perspective that reveals their unique beauty I admire. Lynne is just one example of so many shining lights out there, simply “being” and “being” it well.
Lynne definitely is one that walks the walk of everything that is meaningful to her. She really knows how to live a zestful life and simply by being who she is and doing what she loves, she is an inspirational example to others. Everything she touches is full of love, laughter, light, and life.
I hope you enjoy a more intimate connection with her through my own sharings and some of her own.
And for some amazing insights from Lynne’s clients, check out these testimonials about her healing and guidance gifts: Testimonials
A Little Background On How I Met Lynne and My Words About Her:
Lynne and I both happened to live in Reno at the same time, unbeknownst to us. We shared a mutual friend who gifted her a Reiki session with me and from the moment she stepped through my door, we shared tears, laughter, and a kinship that was like connecting with a long lost friend. We both chuckled that we’d not met earlier, but all things have their divine timing.
Lynne also became my very first sacred tattoo design client, shortly thereafter. This was such an amazing experience to be part of with her (her first tattoo) and I still remember when we drove up to Lake Tahoe together (which we both LOVE) and I shared the drawing and symbolism behind it with her, how magickal it was to experience that energetic connection through its manifestation – the beginning of quite a journey with this for me. It was also a beautiful gift to see her eyes light up in love with it. 🙂
We share an ongoing joke about bananas that will likely not ever be embraced by anyone outside of us – all stemming from a raw food meetup in Reno we attended together (but turned out to be much different than we thought) where we sat in a circle and the leader had us “pass the banana” in order to speak (exactly their words). Who ever was holding the banana had the platform and this had us riddled with uncontrollable laughter, which just so mirrors the lightness and child-like spiritedness we share. It was one of those funny-bone ticklers that literally had me crying and laughter-tummy-sick for two days after. This is one of the things I admire most about Lynne is her knowing how to never lose that inner child, how to bring it out in others, and how to make the most out of everything.
And it wasn’t long after that we both moved back to Southern California – not planned and again unbeknownst to each of us, but we both received the message to move at the same time. She went first and I followed just shortly after, within like a month, feeling it was important to both of our journeys.
Since the first time we met at my home for her session, our times spent together (even though not often) have proven to reveal a kindred spirit we both share in many regards. Some of which include both being freedom lovers, adventure travelers of the world, lovers of nature and animals, and having an innate sense of not being able to conform to any reality other than our own. If not doing the work she loves, you’ll find her off on the next adventure exploring the nooks and crannies of nature near and far.
That is one of the many things I love about Lynne is that she just “is who she is.” She loves her life, she loves life, and she creates her life as “she” chooses.
This is one of the first things you’ll discover if you have the pleasure of meeting Lynne and receiving her gifts of service, is how much she exudes joy and love, how unconditional and nonjudgmental she is and how ready she is for the next adventure. You name it, she’s there! And yet she still manages to have this sweet shyness and demureness that is adorable.
I love her simplistic approach to life, as she truly understands what is most valuable and important. Like with anyone, there’s the ups and downs of life to maneuver in, but as her quote on her website shares, “The water knows its destination. Don’t fight it, let it take you there.” Lynne is an example of embracing and flowing with life, rather than fighting it, and where she arrives, she is, happily.
Lynne is multi-faceted in the hats she wears. She loves all of her “jobs,” although would never refer to any of them as that, as they just are natural extensions of what she loves doing, and she creates her own schedule around what feels right for her.
Lynne Day is a Massage Therapist, Reiki Practitioner, and Hiking Adventure Guide, as well as works for Whole Foods and REI only a few days a week simply because she loves being of service, working in fields she loves (helping with nutrition and outdoor knowledge), and assisting in an environment of community. She is an example of seeing and loving the value of every part of her life, cohesively bringing all of her gifts together in a blend that gives her what she desires, and that speaks volumes.
Lynne expresses, ” I am a healing facilitator, adventurer and nature lover” who loves to “share with you my love of life, and to begin to bring awareness of living a happy, meaningful and fulfilling existence by maintaining a balance of body, mind and spirit.”
She really is an example of integrating all of her loves and gifts into creating anew each day, the life she desires to experience. She’s a perfect example of how to turn your passions into your life’s work, do what you love, and live your dreams.
Lynne also has a sweet shyness, as I mentioned, and very humble quality to her, which creates a nice balance with her fun-loving nature. This is part of why I also wanted to share my own insights alongside the questions I asked. I hope you enjoy knowing Lynne a little bit more through her words.
Lynne Day In Her Own Words:
“I am a nature girl at heart with a love of being close to a big city. I suppose this comes from being born and raised in the Pacific Northwest where the natural world was everywhere, yet cities, with all of the culture they offer, were nearby too.
Today I can honestly say that Southern California is a perfect ‘home base’ for me. The mountains, the beach, the city, a major airport to fly off to places unknown, are all at my doorstep. I love it!
I consciously choose to see the positive in everything and every situation and consider myself a ‘glass all-the-way-full’ person. I practice living my life to the fullest each and every day.
I believe that happiness is a choice and yes, it is my choice! I take care of myself from the inside out and is the only way to finding the way back “home”. The outside shell is but a reflection of one’s inner life.
I look forward to connecting and smiling with you and to explore the possibilities for deep healing and inner discovery.”
A Short Interview with Lynne Day:
Tania: What things inspire you most in life and how does that translate into the services you share with others through your passions and gifts?
Lynne: Every day is a new day with infinite things to learn, explore and do. An infinite wisdom in the Universe, making it all somehow ‘happen’. It fascinates me and I always am inspired by it. I think by me living each day to it’s fullest and always seeing the positive and infinite possibilities in life, often times inspires others to do the same. That, in turn, inspires me to be more of me and share more of me. Does that make sense? lol
Tania: What do you love most about living in Southern California and how does it mirror who you are?
Lynne: The mountains and ocean are right here. The energy of both combined, fuels me. I love getting outdoors and exploring it all. I get to see the ocean every day! I love the diversity of people and things to do in LA. I love having my spiritual community close. I love having a major airport nearby where I can fly in and out so easily. And, of course the beach climate…for me, it’s ideal.
Tania: I see that you love to travel the world and are such a free spirit. What are some of the most memorable places you’ve explored and how have they influenced your life and work?
Lynne: Backpacking the Inca Trail through Peru was life-changing. I became very sick and was the sickest when I had to climb the highest peak of 14,000 feet. Without the support of my team/tribe, I would not have been able to have accomplished it. It made me realize that we all need each other, we’re all connected and that there’s so much connecting us all.
Bungee jumping in New Zealand was one of the scariest things I had done at that time (I am scared of heights). It was a metaphor for my life. I knew that if I could take that one step forward, that it would allow me to be free and give me the confidence to do others things that scared me. And I did it!!
Tania: Are there any particular people or experiences that have been instrumental in your life and how have they inspired you and your work?
(Tania:) Aw! Thank you
Tania: Do you have any favorite quotes or mottos that are the foundations of your life?
Lynne: “Look deep into nature and you will understand everything better.” ~Albert Einstein
Whenever I have a question, I can always look to nature for the answer. It just makes sense to me.
“Not all Who Wander Are Lost” ~J.R.R. Tolkien
I’m all over the place (lost it may seem to most) but as long as I’m grounded ‘within’ I am never truly lost.
Tania: If you could only use 5 words to describe yourself, what would those be?
Lynne: Loving, Adventurous, Spiritual, Peaceful, Optimistic
Tania: Can you share a little about how your journey in the healing arts and the world of nature evolved into your service to others?
Lynne: I think from a small child I was surrounded by nature and adventure and also grew up in a family dynamic where I was sort of the ‘center’ of the family, the one who was either the rebel or the ‘go to ‘ person for help. It sort of set the tone for who I am today. I find that I feel at my best with nature and adventure in my life and when I can help people through my energy work and wisdom of life experiences.
Tania: What do you love most about being a Reiki Practitioner? Massage Therapist? Outdoor Guide? And what do you hope to support and inspire in others through these services you provide?
Lynne: All of these things bring forth my greatest gifts. I feel that when we can share our gifts and our true selves, there is no greater success in life. To practice this and inspire others to do the same, inspires me like nothing else.
Tania: What are some of your favorite places to take people on an outdoor adventure?
Lynne: It just depends on the person/people. But I love showing people new places or watching them light up when they see something in nature that they have never seen or noticed before. It brings me great joy.
Tania: How has the practice of Reiki influenced your work? Does it enhance your massage work? And if so, can you explain how and what your clients have experienced through the combination of receiving Reiki and massage?
Lynne: Reiki has influenced every part of my life. I don’t really know how to explain it but my clients always tell me that there’s something ‘different’ in my massages. That I have a very peaceful energy about me and that they feel so much better when they’re around me.
Tania: You’re such a fun-loving person who seems to always have a positive outlook. Is there anything that brings you down in life and if so how do you find balance to return back to that positive state of mind?
Lynne: Thank you. 🙂 Yes, there are things that bring me down of course. One thing that pops up for me right away is people’s neglect for the environment and ignorance for what their contribution is to our failing eco-system. I find balance and optimism when I know that I am doing as much as I can, making a difference but especially when someone reaches out to me and expresses concern and wants to know ways in which they can help.
Tania: What are your dreams for your work?
Lynne: I have never been one with a big set plan. I just follow my heart basically and try not to look too far forward or too far back. Just stay in the moment and enjoy every one of them to the fullest. I guess that translates into my work always evolving and changing but at the same time having an intention of adventure, healing and bright light always!
Tania: If someone wants to contact you for a Reiki or massage healing session or to acquire your guide services, how can they reach you?
Thank you Lynne for allowing me to share more about you so that others may find inspiration in the qualities I admire in you.