If you’ve ever taken a yoga class, you know there are teachers out there that can lead you through a valuable life mantra that transcends your experience beyond any physical pose you may have been trying to master on your mat and elevates your being to a place of wanting to live a more conscious, natural and earth-loving life.
At least that’s what we’ve experienced in Ashleigh Sergeant‘s class, which is why we’ve chosen her to be our Fierce Woman of the Month. Ashleigh is not only a highly celebrated yoga teacher, but if not more importantly, she has built a life she loves and is helping others “connect with their unique purpose,” which in many cases can lead to a new found love for mother nature.
With Earth Day coming up next week, we are all (hopefully) taking on initiatives to celebrate our beautiful planet, however what more can we do year round to connect to the great powers of the Earth every day? Ashleigh’s yoga practice lead her on a progressive journey of answering this question. It sharpened her senses to the beauty of the world we live in and finding ways to preserve it by becoming one with it.
In her own words, “it took a big leap of faith,” to leave the successful urban routine and following she had in NYC (where we first met Ashleigh) for sunny LA (where we just opened a new satellite office) to where she recently created her own “magical” sustainable Avatar-like home not in the fictional native planet of Pandora, but in the beautiful reality of the jungles of Costa Rica (a place we recently launched Maxim Hygiene products).
Learn more about Ashleigh’s story in our exclusive and first ever Fierce Woman video interview below. Although a little long, you’ll be uplifted by Ashleigh’s authentic spirit, story and the beautiful green landscapes she gets to have as her backdrop not only in this video but in every day life!
For those who prefer a quick read, we’ve transcribed bits and pieces of her responses below the video. We’re hoping this piece will have you as excited as we are to check back in next week for a guest blog post by Ashleigh and her husband Justin on pointers about how they built different aspects of their beautiful sustainable home (just in case this interview inspires you to build one of your own).
Your bio tells us you grew up with and picked up your yogi lifestyle from your mom. Was eco-conscious living a big part of your upbringing? If so, how and was it difficult to live with those standards amongst your peers who may have not had the same values?
I didn’t live in a hippie commune away from society, kind of like I’m moving towards now, but I more feel like I was raised with a little more awareness and consciousness about what I’m putting in my body, so it was always beneficial to me and I never felt really hindered by it actually.
How long have you been dreaming about having a sustainably made home of your own and how did you begin researching ways of creating it?
I’ve kind of been dreaming of living an alternative lifestyle my whole life. Everywhere I traveled made me realize the world is so much bigger than where I grew up in New Jersey and New York. I just saw all these different cultures and different ways of living and I was instantly and consistently pulled more and more towards trying to live this way or that way… helped me see I could live somewhere totally magical and totally creative and the idea of bringing that creativity in to my home and surrounding myself with is a big part of what my yoga practice brought to me. Creating the space around us creates our reality.
Here are the two books Ashleigh read and recommends for researching ways of creating a sustainable home:
The difficult part was really learning patience. Being New Yorkers we kind of were very pushy and wanted things to happen immediately. The more and more we pushed it seemed the slower it felt. I had to learn things take time.
The most fun part about it is seeing our land…walking around the property, getting our hands dirty and connecting to the earth and realizing this is my home. Becoming one with a piece of this land that offers us so much abundance.
Why choose Costa Rica for your new home?
So many reasons…the water is 86 degress, so warm, and so beautiful. It’s the land of Pura Vida (pure living). It’s about realizing here that every day is about enjoying yourself, being present in the moment and appreciating everything the world gives – our food, our shelter, our oxygen. Everything is so alive here. I feel so healthy and nourished by the seasonal and organic food here
Not that long ago Costa Rica dissolved their armed forces and put the money in to building schools and conserving the rainforest. I love that this is country is doing what they can, even though they are a small country, to really put that out there in the world.
Also Costa Rica runs off of 95% sustainable power so even when you’re plugging in to the grid here Costa Rica is generating most of its own energy which is huge for me because it’s less impact on mother nature who serves us all the time.