Retreat Guru interviewed Cristina about our project in Bali: YOUniverse, Honeymoon with your Self Retreat. Here is the entire article, originally posted on their blog. Enjoy!
Splitting up is never easy, in fact, it can be utterly debilitating. Whether it’s divorce or a divorce from a partner that you shared life with – you basically have to transform a way of being that you have formed with another into a new art of living, of existing. Since going through a divorce can be so challenging, an amazing collective of people have come together to support you in this experience so that you can emerge on the other side more alive and whole and ready to embrace a new joyful life.
Retreat Guru recently discovered The YOUniverse collective, a conscious community of men and women in Ubud, Bali, that are fully dedicated to those who are processing a separation from a partner, taking them on a transformational journey of healing, sacred ceremonies, inner and outer discovery, rejuvenation and celebration. We were thrilled to learn that this organization exists, and spoke to Cristina, the Creator and Co-Founder of YOUniverse Revival, to find out the story behind this unique heart centered concept.
How did it all start?
The concept was born deep inside of me when I was moving through divorce. After 10 years of sharing a life with my former partner, I walked into redefining who I was and realized that the impact of separation on one’s life is huge. It can either be the beginning of a joyful new chapter, or, as it happened in the case of my own parents, it can truly break one into pieces.
I lost my mother to suicide when I was 12, during a painful process of divorce from my father. She simply could not imagine life without my dad, which led to depression and caused her to see suicide as the only way to end her profound suffering. This event has impacted me throughout my entire life. At the time of my parent’s divorce, I was way too young to be a pillar of support for my mom or to even understand what was happening to her in those moments.
Now, having just gone through a divorce myself, I have realized that my life experiences and healing journey have been preparing me to do something for others – to provide a safety net for those who are struggling to recover from a divorce.
So I resigned my management position and my career in a multinational company I was involved in for seven years, with no second thought, to start building YOUniverse Revival. Now, together with an experienced team, I am dedicating myself to support others to overcome the demanding challenges that separation brings.
What is your vision and your advice to those who are going through a divorce?
Our mission is to purely revive the sense of purpose in people’s lives and give a new meaning to life after divorce. Just because we’ve all been there, we know how it can shake one’s world and turn it upside down. But in truth, without ignoring the challenges that a divorce brings, we believe that you’re gaining a brand new life, creating your entire experience as you wish.
Divorce is often perceived as a failure, but it’s not, as – in all honesty – nothing in life is. All and everything simply is an experience. An experience that expands your horizons and makes you richer on the path that you walk on this earth. So instead of calling it separation, you can simply choose to name its completion. Completion of an old chapter that creates space for a new beginning, more meaningful than ever before.
From our experience, the way you perceive this change of scenery sets the ground for what will unfold next. You’re the one who holds the key to a joyful life and also the power to see that every challenging experience is, in fact, a chance to renewal – your renewal.
The moment you choose to see this, you’re in the process of truly loving yourself, and when you love yourself first, life will take care of the rest. We deeply comprehend that loneliness can sometimes disrupt the view, so we want you to know that you’re not alone and to truly feel it!
Who are the people behind this concept?
A team of unshakable optimists, experienced therapists, entrepreneurs, storytellers and philanthropists, fully dedicated to supporting you on the path of becoming your true empowered joyful self. Our community includes conscious women and men from different corners of the world: Australia, USA, Romania, Argentina, Brazil, Germany and Indonesia. Sharing the same purpose at heart, we allow our experience, creativity and passions to unfold into this concept.
We are specialized in healing workshops, therapy, yoga, sacred ceremonies, intuitive art, holding circles for men and women, releasing trauma, integrating change, embracing transformation, all ultimately re-connecting you to your inner guidance and leading towards the path of purposeful living.
Why is Ubud, Bali the ideal destination for healing after a divorce?
Bali is known for being one of the two spots where the two ley lines of our planet Earth cross. Ubud, in particular, is known among the people living here for carrying funneled energy eliciting awareness and change. There is much more to Ubud than the bare eye can see. It raises you to a higher power and literally is heart pulsating in the rhythm of transformation and love.
Be it for the belief in ley lines, be it for the energy the locals create here through their daily ceremonies and offerings – coming to Ubud you feel the difference and special energy. Even if you believe in nothing at all. You can’t escape the magic of its touch. It captures you from the first breath, takes you on a journey of emotions, brings you closer to yourself, no matter how brief your moment in its embrace is.
It is easy to fall in love here. You’ve probably heard of Elizabeth Gilbert’s inspiring true story and movie, Eat Pray Love haha! This land ignites you to fall in love, first with yourself, then with life and eventually with another, if you’re not already experiencing that truly.
You got divorced and nestled in Ubud 2 years ago. How has this impacted your own experience?
There are so many wonderful places on this planet, I was lucky to live in quite a few during my seven years of travels on all continents, but none has gifted me so many profound experiences as Ubud has.
I see it as a powerful mirror of truth, a place that pulls out the best and worst in me every day, confronts me with my lies and my truths, amplifies all emotions, experiences, and therefore forces me to grow. It feels like being in the arms of a strict, but very loving mother. I realized that all the energy this place holds is indeed life-changing, it’s not just a myth.
After learning the lessons that arose from going through my divorce, Bali taught me not only how to understand and forgive myself, but to be at peace with all experiences that life brings.
Eventually, on a personal level, this place has gifted me so much: life purpose, self-awareness, authentic friendships and also brought my beloved partner my way, through a “massive coincidence” that I will speak about on another occasion.
I am forever grateful for Bali’s magic!