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Missionary Spotlight: Get to Know OHI Missionary, Tanya Trklja

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Tanya Trklja describes herself as someone suspended forever in that “in between” place. “I grew up in Serbia and left my family to come to Canada,” said Tanya. “I have always felt stretched between the two countries. I think every immigrant can identify with that feeling. With that mindset, I had high expectations and felt I had to prove myself. I worked hard for decades in a very stressful corporate project management and operations role, where I was a high achiever. I also spent a great deal of time juggling my family, kids, social life, professional development, and expectations from my family back in Europe. About seven years ago, my body gave in to all the pressure, and I experienced a total body, mind, and spirit breakdown."

Tanya turned to OHI for help. “The program helped me immensely,” said Tanya. “The wheatgrass detox cleanse was exactly what my body needed to reset. The organic raw vegan foods were as delicious as they were healing. The body, mind, and spirit classes helped me process my breakdown so I could start building myself back up again. But what I appreciated the most was the sense of fellowship and community at OHI. I needed that to uplift my spirit and reinvent myself. Listening to other people’s stories really inspired me. After experiencing the program as a guest, I knew I would one day come back as a missionary. That ‘one day’ manifested itself the very next year. Since then, I keep coming back annually to both OHI San Diego and OHI Austin for a tune up and inspiration.”

Tanya felt “cared for” when she was an OHI guest, but she felt truly “connected” when she served as an OHI missionary. “OHI is my home away from home, and the staff and fellow missionaries are my adopted family,” said Tanya. “I feel fully supported surrounded by like-minded people. As missionaries, we’re all helping each other while living the program and supporting other guests on their life journeys. As a missionary, I know I am living my life’s purpose, connecting and helping others. It helped me develop a greater self-awareness, deepened my reliance on God, and allowed me to trust the Spirit to guide me through life’s challenging situations. The daily prayers and Bible reading deepened my faith and values. I feel confident I now have the most up-to-date healing modalities for body, mind and spirit in my toolbox to continue living the OHI program outside of OHI. And I owe it all to the OHI Missionary program.”

Tanya opened up and was totally vulnerable while working as a missionary, and she received so much in return. “We all know how great it feels to give without expectation, and that is exactly how I approached being a missionary,” said Tanya. “I have been so blessed in return. It is an honor to be a listening ear as guests share their feelings. To offer encouragement and hope to someone who is temporarily going through a dark phase in their life, and holding a space for their healing, is a responsibility I took seriously. I am so grateful that OHI taught me how to offer support to those around me, show love instead of fear and understanding instead of judgment. I now shine my true authentic light and am present for others.”

On a practical note, Tanya sees many benefits to serving as a missionary. “When you’re a missionary, you deepen your skill sets in areas of guest services experience, relationship management, food service, and facilitation skills. You enhance time management and communication skills in the areas of team building and community development. These personal development skills can enhance anyone’s life, academic and professional experiences.”

Tanya enthusiastically shares stories of her missionary experience with others. “Whether helping guests with the detox cleanse, conducting exercise classes, or hosting a weekly variety show, the role was fun, creative and very gratifying,” said Tanya. “I loved seeing guests transformed with renewed energy and motivation to live their optimum life. I wholeheartedly recommend OHI’s Missionary program to anyone who feels the call to return and serve. We are all ambassadors of this program, and we have a unique opportunity to share our knowledge and experience with anyone interested in making a positive life change. I am passionate about sharing my experiences and promoting the OHI program around the world with the hope that everyone learns that transformational healing can be accessible to all.”

Tanya’s parting words show you her true heart. “The OHI program allowed me to be more open, to be vulnerable and able to share and receive. I now focus on what I can control and let go of what I can’t. I’m living my very best life with intention, one day at a time. Come to OHI, and you can, too.”

Thinking about applying for OHI’s Missionary Program? Call us (800) 588-0809.