What I learned in the jungles of Costa Rica

Mar 12, 2015 | Sparkly Love

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Buenos días!

I just got back from 3 weeks in Costa Rica, and I’m still buzzing with happiness after one of the most amazing trips I’ve ever been on! What I love most about travel, is that allows you to get out of your everyday routine and see life in a new light. You can pack your days with fun adventures or indulgent laziness, you get to be an HD version of yourself and live each moment to the fullest. 

Exploring the world also allows you to see how other people live their lives and go about their daily business. I find it so fascinating to see how cultures do the simple little things; like how they drink their coffee or what they eat for breakfast. I love to see how individuals interact with their communities and what a typical home looks like. These little glimpses of how someone else lives helps me to appreciate and be grateful for my own.

I’ve learned a lot about myself through travel, and this was especially true for my trip to Costa Rica. My trip started out with a yoga retreat at a beautiful eco lodge high in the jungle mountains.  The setting was so gorgeous and it felt so great to do yoga twice a day and eat healthy, clean vegetarian food. I pushed myself to do posses that normally I shy away from like head and handstands. It was an amazing feeling to go beyond my comfort zone and discover that my body can do more than I thought it could. 

My dear friend Gertie was also at the yoga retreat, and we had so many giggle fits my abs were often sore! Laughing and being silly is a tremendous release and just feels really damn good. Normally I’m a pretty smiley and lighthearted person, but in Costa Rica I was a walking lol machine! Everything around me just made me really joyful and giddy. All the people at the retreat were so kind and lovely too 🙂

After the yoga retreat, I had a few days to decompress at the beach before my brother Chandler flew into Costa Rica from Brazil to join me at the Envision Festival. This is basically a spirituality and wellness workshop combined with a wild jungle party! There were over 7000 people at the festival, mostly from the US and Canada. The art installations and design were absolutely incredible and they even had an artisan marketplace constructed out of bamboo. The entire festival was exploding with so much creativity, beauty and ingenuity that my brain could hardly handle it. I had an absolute blast and danced harder than I had in a very long time! There was such a beautiful energy at Envision and my favourite part was watching the sunset with thousands of people on the beach. It was one of the most magical things I have ever experienced.

The last part of my trip I was on my own. I’ve travelled a lot but apart from some business conferences and meetings, it’s always been with other people. Travelling alone was something I thought would be boring, lonely and scary, but I decided that a week in Costa Rica would be a good way to challenge myself. After Envision, I took a bus up to La Fortuna which is a small town at the base of the stunning Arenal volcano.

Arriving at my hotel and not having a plan of what I would do or what I would see was so thrilling. Each morning I would wake up and decide spontaneously what I felt like doing for the day. La Fortuna has an abundance of activities, so I filled my time with zip lining, hiking, tubing down the river and hot springs (the best part!). I absolutely loved the feeling of heading out on these adventures on my own and then meeting awesome people along the way. At night I would go out for dinner and always end up meeting locals or other travellers walking down the street or sitting at the bar. It was really fun and I felt fearless and brave. I also learned a lot by having conversations with people from different backgrounds and cultures.  

I think the reason it was so easy to meet people, is because I was having such a great time and I’m sure it was obvious by the big perma-smile on my face! Travelling on my own ended up being on of the highlights of my trip and I can’t wait to do it again. If you have never tried it, I highly recommend giving it a shot! Be openminded, adventurous and radiate happiness and you’ll have new friends in no time 🙂

My time in Costa Rica was tremendously nourishing for my body, mind and soul. I feel expanded and uplifted to be more creative and incorporate so new practices in my daily life. Being outside for pretty much the entire day reminded me how important it is to incorporate nature into my routine. 

The Costa Rican’s have a phrase, ‘pura vida’ which translates to  pure life. This resonates strongly with me because I felt really clear minded and vibrant there. It was easy to be in present in the moment because there was so much beauty to take in. I wasn’t distracted by all the things that usually capture my attention when I’m at home. I was more concerned with looking in the trees and trying to find sloths to cuddle!

Here’s what I learned from the jungles of Costa Rica:

  • It’s ok to take things slow and allow for life to unfold naturally
  • Go outside and get engaged with nature
  • Take your time to savour
  • Enjoy the beauty around you
  • Treat everyone with kindness
  • Take joy in the little things
  • Move your body
  • Enjoy each moment to the fullest
  • Respect and preserve the environment
  • Have fun and don’t take life too seriously
  • Look at everything with wonderment and enthusiasm
  • Smile and be happy!

I feel so grateful that I’m able to travel because I know it can be difficult for a lot of people to be able to get away. Our planet is so incredibly beautiful, and there is so much to see and experience. For me travel is a way to reconnect with who I am as a human and also appreciate the spender of other earthlings. From creepy crawlers, to giant trees, and fish in the sea, it’s a reminder that we are all connected and need to take care of one another.  

Meet Jenna

Hello, I’m Jenna and I want to help make your life more magical! Not just in a glossy, filtered, perfectly Instagramed way, but in a way that feels amazing to you. I want to show you how you can serve the world by just being your gorgeous, perfectly imperfect self.

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