Making Room for Peace | Sheena Jeffers
A quick glance at her home address and professions, and most would be quick to see that Sheena Jeffers is seizing life! It was about a year ago that Sheena and her boyfriend Ryan sold their home and belongings, and moved onto their 43-foot catamaran boat which they appropriately named "Seas Life". Instead of being tied down, they are making room for peace in their lives... traveling and discovering more about themselves, the world, and their life purpose. Sheena has shared a little bit of her story here with us below, along with the incredible sense of peace that she is experiencing.
WHERE DID YOU GROW UP?
I am 32 years old; half of my life has been spent in Richmond, Virginia and the other half has been spent in Virginia Beach / Norfolk, VA. I was born in Richmond and spent my childhood growing up in a small town outside of the city called Mechanicsville, Virginia. I lived there until I was 12 and returned for college 6 years later. I attended middle and high school in Virginia Beach and Norfolk, and returned back there for graduate school. I think of both areas (Richmond and Hampton Roads) as my home. They both hold such special places in my heart.
WHERE DO YOU LIVE?
I currently live on my sailboat, a 43-foot catamaran called Seas Life. We left Norfolk, Virginia on November 30 to spend some time traveling, island hopping, and discovering more about ourselves, our world and our life purposes.
HOW DID YOU MEET YOUR PARTNER, RYAN?
We met when a dear friend convinced me to join a dating app - which I swore to never do. She convinced me to go on 5 dates and she even swiped through and picked the guys! Ryan was the first date of the five I was supposed to go on. We met at Froggie’s off Shore Drive for a drink. I had just come from ballet class and was still sweaty and not cute! I fell for him right away when he told me all of the times he’s uprooted an unhappy place in life to build a life he’s always dreamed about.
WHAT LED YOU TO TAKE THE PLUNGE?
We were in a perfect place in life to do this, and that fact kept creeping up in our minds. Financially and market wise, it was a great time in the market to sell his home and pay off the boat. Career wise, we were both at forks in the road: we had jobs that were good, but we weren’t completely happy. Family wise, we didn’t have children, and we wanted to spend some quality time together before even thinking about that next phase. We named the boat Seas Life because we are both committed to making the most of this one life we’ve been given. When we kept seeing signs that now was the time, we didn’t hesitate! We held yard sales, we rented out my condo, we just took action steps to make it happen! A little bit each day led us here!
DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR THOSE LOOKING TO SIMPLIFY?
I think the key to finding peace, joy, contentment, happiness is first understanding, intimately, your shadow. This can make simplifying feel overwhelming because you first have to find and understand what is not simple in your life. That’s tough because that means taking ownership of the decisions we made that complicated our lives.
So, even if you don’t want to sell everything and move onto a boat, you still need to do some soul searching of what currently complicates your life.
Too many clothes? You can easily give them away, but if you don’t find the root of the shadow (like impulse purchasing, retail therapy, etc.) the problem will return.
Poor finances? An unhealthy relationship? A dead-end job? An unsafe or unclean living environment? Whatever is complicating your life will take an honest effort of determining how to simplify it. Then, the simplifying becomes easy and refreshing.
DESCRIBE THE SENSE OF PEACE THAT YOU HAVE SINCE SIMPLIFYING:
Wow… words will fail me. Do you know that moment you take a deep breath and you feel your lungs accept the deep breath and there’s this sense of relief over your entire body? Sometimes, you take a deep breath but your lungs don’t seem to accept it, and you feel a little more stressed for being denied the fullness of the breath. But then there are those times when your lungs fill and there’s almost a little pulse and you feel gratitude over your whole body. That’s what it feels like.
We wake up with the sunrise and sleep just after sunset. No more alarm clocks.
We take the jobs that feel good to us and are worth our time and efforts. No more accepting jobs for the fear of finances. We lowered our monthly expenses in order to do this.
We aren’t surrounded with materialism any longer, so we don’t feel urges to buy, buy, buy. (We don’t even have an address where amazon can reach us!)
We are in touch with nature every single day. We know when the wind shifts, the water shifts. We eat fish, crab and lobster straight from the water. We purchase vegetables from markets; from the farmers’ hands that grew them.
We spend time in creative meditation. We engage with nothingness. This allows us to feel more creative, have new ideas, take on new projects. It has opened our minds in more ways than one.
We are learning how to love each other better. We have less distractions: no internet, no TV, no set schedules. We spend our time talking things through, pointing out what we’re observing and how we’re growing. We cook together every night. We solve every problem together.
DO YOU HAVE ANY RULES FOR WHAT COMES IN YOUR HOME?
We try to not bring on more new stuff. So, if I buy and bring on a new shirt, then I try to recycle an old shirt (we re-purpose it or get rid of it). It just has to be something that we absolutely love and desire for comfort or something that we functionally need for survival.
WHERE ARE HAVE YOU & RYAN SAILED TO?
Cape Lookout, NC | Charleston, SC | St. Augustine, FL | Daytona Beach, FL | New Symrna Beach, FL | Nassau, Bahamas | Staniel Cay, Bahamas | Rose Island, Bahamas | Providence Island, Bahamas | Cambridge Cay, Bahamas | Shroud Cay, Bahamas | Norman Island, Bahamas | Highborne Cay, Bahamas
WHATS NEXT ON YOUR LIST?
Dominican Republic | Puerto Rico | Virgin Islands | Costa Rica | Panama | Nicaragua | Columbia
IN TERMS OF WORK... HOW DO YOU MAKE IT WORK?
First, we did save money for this trip to enable us to have to work less and travel more. However, we do work along the way. I am a Professional Wellness Life Coach and do life coaching digitally. I am also a certified yoga teacher, and I teach yoga on private yachts. Ryan is a licensed boat captain, so opportunities come up for him to make money on other boats. We work as we go so that we aren’t having to touch our savings. This elongates our travel, even if it means we have to stop and work for awhile.
THE NAME OF YOUR BOAT IS "SEAS LIFE". CAN YOU TELL US HOW THE TWO OF YOU CAME UP WITH THAT NAME?
Ryan came up with the name, and proposed it to me and I immediately loved it! It was perfect for us and our shared approach to life. We both believe that you only get one life, and we didn’t want to spend the best years of our life (when we have our health, energy, youth) in an office not moving our bodies or experiencing our world. Seas Life reminds us to seize opportunities, take the jump, trust the net will appear! It sets a tone for all of our decision making to be bold and courageous out there!
Photo Credit: Stellar Exposures