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Background of Essencia Yoga

Why and how the business was birthed?

What is “HOLISTIC Essential for Renewal?”

A Perspective . A model to be embraced,  

Helpful Guidelines to keep us on track:  
The five principles highlighted in the Sivananda method of yoga are the  (1) Proper exercise – Asanas (2) Proper breathing - Pranayama (3) Proper relaxation - Savasana (4) Proper diet and  (5) Proper thinking.


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Living Life at its Essence: a personal journey

Growing up in the war torn country of EL Salvador, under the example of parents committed to serve in the challenging places of the world, Jeannine would go on with this vision,  spending many seasons of life serving with non-profit agencies around the globe. She has witnessed a great variety of cultures and communities, spanning from the desperate and impoverished in the Third World, to the more privileged and affluent societies found in those same regions.  

International Up-Bringing

Through her personal journey, she experienced the joy of compassion through opening her heart to seeing the world through the eyes of others. She pursued  a wide array of studies, that would more effectively prepare her to embark on a mission of letting her life pour forth hope from the bounty that she had encountered, even in the most vulnerable places.  She felt honored as she met with diverse paradigms, individuals that might have been simply seeking refuge of sorts or an intentional quest for answers, solutions to life questions. The universal, human plight, that involves hurdles and challenges that causes questioning of everything.   Where all that is “known” becomes “unknown,” and hope seems to fail.



Jeannine’s natural pursuit and heart beat with a desire to empower individuals to live well; with energy, vitality, support and a sense of purpose.  Both research and experiences in the world of education, taught her that vitality in life can be discovered.

However, it was when she endured her own crisis and literally lost her connection to her breath and beliefs, where she was required to personally undergo the greater unknown and  commit to embracing each moment. Slowing down to breathe, as she would otherwise find herself in a place of great pain, forced her to be present for the inhale and the exhale. This shock to her conscious, put to the test everything she had previously held on to for others, but would it be sufficient after all, for her?  

The disorientation in space, brought further turmoil as the disciplines of old that had worked to keep things aligned no longer served her.  The isolation that came as a result of her further feeling ill - equipped, brought shame and purposelessness. The life force within. felt absent and hollow for apparent season’s on end.   

Eventually, a sporadic glimmer of light would return and though elusive it would be enough to take a step or two and invest in breathing exercises, that would invite greater awareness and greater margin within.  Bringing back a sense of value, in uniting with the Source of Breath, she remembered that she too could reengage and offer a unique contribution t0 the world around . Starting with the most valuable resource, available bountifully and moving from there to contribute this mysterious healing agent as a reminder to individuals, communities, countries, world, that our greatest longing might become available, with going back to the most basic human breathing practice.  

She calls this, “living life at its essence!"   Connecting with the vital human breath; Uniting to the life-sustaining source.    

Yoga: a lifestyle tool for personal and community connections.  

The human adventure of life, requires us to have operational tools to thrive.  We have learned that the present moment is available for our full inhabiting and that the layers we carry with us of past experiences and concerns for our future, do not grant us that possibility of being present trying to go back or forward in time is not allowing us the bursting potential of the now. Becoming individuals, where we begin to listen without judgement and offer allows for us to learn from the past and better prepare for what lies ahead. The practice of yoga serves as a cleansing practice, removing blockages that hinder the healing possibilities.    

Among many in our community, there tends to be hesitancy, even skepticism, as to if and how the practice of yoga can lead to a better life.  There often is a misunderstanding about what yoga actually is. As a result, the amazing individual and collective community benefits that come with a regular practice of yoga has been overlooked by many in Wheaton.  

Yoga is counter-culture in that it does not buy into the voices of the media or current trends but seeks to cleanse the superfluous and bring greater simplicity, reconnecting us with our deepest self.  Contrary to common misconceptions due to frequent misrepresentation, yoga is not about becoming the most flexible person in the studio, nor is it to promote any particular agenda. Instead, yoga is a commitment to living a healthy lifestyle that, no matter your background, age, financial bracket, gender, or personal abilities and limitations, allows you to experience its many health benefits and ultimately lead to a better life.

Endless publications have been devoted to research that unveils the wealth of reward to all who regularly practice yoga.  Entire communities can “live better” when they commit to a collective experience. Families find reconciliation, individuals experience renewal.  It is not that yoga is the answer, it is more that yoga is a valid tool that can offer clarity to feel and see and experience the answers that are available.  

The Birth of Essencia Yoga Studio and Wellness Center

Since 2006, Jeannine has been teaching yoga to personal practitioners and yoga teachers in the Chicagoland area. She has taught in a number of venues: from Wheaton College, to the Dupage Convalescent Home, to classes of congregation members at "All Souls Anglican Church."   The rewards of teaching yoga as a lifestyle have been great.

She has opened a Yoga Alliance Registered School (RSY), to train and certify teachers with a vision for the healing potential that is available through connecting with the Breath of Life.  The school offers a 200 hr and 300 hr level. The growing interest has required them to create their own space, that would allow them to host the variety of programs they are equipped to hold.  

Essencia’s dream and vision for Wheaton and it’s beautiful community: all are welcome

In the early summer of 2013, Jeannine began thinking through some tangible ways to communicate the welcoming dream and vision to everyone.  

This is where the idea of a mural came to mind.  

What are our company's core values, goals and overall mission?

WHY?  Essencia exists to facilitate growth for all who are looking to integrate the discipline of yoga into their lives in a deeper and more substantial way.

HOW?  We offer personalized classes, customized to our practitioners with modifications for all levels, to enable them to reap the benefits right where they are at.

WHO?  Our practitioners are those who are interested in opportunities to further explore their own body awareness and grow to experience personal renewal and transformation.

Why Wheaton?  

1989, gave Jeannine an unlikely acceptance to Wheaton College.

She applied, as she promised her grandparents and parents, with the hopes that if she was not accepted she would get their blessing to go back to serve in Morocco.  

Upon completion, she heads out into the world, gets married, has a family, serves in non-profit work internationally.  S. Korea, Nepal,

Life gets complicated and after several attempts at saving a marriage, it’s time for a reset of life, with 4 in toe.  

Continued confirmation of the deep connection between heart and body, soul and mind an increased curiosity set in, on how to intentionally cultivate this union in the stable times and depend upon it in the necessary times.  

Going back to school to get a masters in Spiritual Formation.  A training ground for giving and receiving, where everything would be put to the test.  

Jeannine studied with the inner question of what part does the physicial body play in the spiritual formation?  

Through the teaching of Pilates, Zumba amd Yoga along with a few specialty class offerings with Scriptured based practice that brought substantial positive feedback.  Staff and faculty attended, some even said it was (best kept secret)> We called it Renew, based on the beautiful scripture in Romans.

  • Convalescent with family

  • Mural - mayor, Laurie.  Commerce!

  • New international diverse camp