We're kicking off this series with Chrissy Gruninger. She is the founder of Sanguine Collective, an eco wellness & travel author, yoga teacher and creator of the Inherent Harmony mentoring program. She loves her 400 square foot jungle home in Costa Rica, the sunshine and the rain and passionately believes that through intentional actions we create more happiness, health and harmony in the world. Her goal: to empower others to thrive in an imperfect world. Read her leap of faith story below.....
My last few years of living in California, I was always sick. Every day. Miserable. I loved my life, I loved where I was living (imagine: vineyards, rugged coastlines and tall redwood trees) but I was so unhappy, never functioning at 100%, not doing all that I wanted to do.
Was there a single event or trigger that made you act? What motivated you to change?
One day I made a realization: every time I travelled south of the border, to Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama and even Cuba, I was healthy. I could breathe.
That was in 2008. I was sitting on the Point Reyes Seashore with friends, on an unseasonably warm March day, and declared: I’m going to move to Costa Rica. My friends looked at me like I was a little crazy, but I knew…deep down in my heart and soul…I was going to make this happen. It took me 4 years but in 2012, I did finally pack up my bags, sell off the majority of my belongings and bought a one way ticket to Costa Rica for me and my 17 year old cat, Harmony.
What was your hardest step?
The hardest part didn’t actually happen until after arriving in my newly adopted country. Living in Costa Rica was more of a culture shock than I had originally anticipated. Owning a business here was even more difficult. It’s actually known as one of the worst places in the world to do business.
I was continuously running into problems with both clients and vendors. Getting paid by clients, and having them honor the contracts we agreed to, was an excruciating process. Trying to open a bank account or set up my business as a registered company here…agonizing. As for team members, while I was paying almost 10x the national minimum wage, the job was never a priority for them. In all fairness, in their minds, and the way they view business and life, it was a priority. To them, work didn’t need to be done on time, or correctly. I had to accept their work ethic was different and I had to find other ways to ensure my business, and my clients, were taken care of (without it all falling on me to do).
3+ years later…I’ve settled into a beautiful life, living with ease and contentment (and good health!). I’m totally in love with my life. Opportunities continue to present themselves. I’ve learned who I want to serve and I’ve remembered how I want to show up in the world: as a bright light who helps create more harmony in the world.
Rather than being dragged down by all the challenges, I’ve learned workarounds for both living and working here. I like to say: Make the grass green where you are… (I’m living proof that it’s possible!)
Following our dreams is not always easy. What tools do you use to keep inspired and motivated?
I believe following our dream life and making it a reality takes courage, strength and presence. It entails truly knowing who you are, deep within your soul. It means accepting both the good and the not so good that shows up in our lives. And it requires us to acknowledge when to let go, or to try a different path.
I’m fortunate to have a worldwide network of mindful people who choose to live a happy, healthy and harmonious life, not just for themselves… but for all. That is both inspiring and supportive. That is what keeps me going, wanting to show up every day, doing the work
Can you share a favourite quote?
A quote by Jim Rohn is really my daily mantra now, both personally and professionally.