Happy Moments: An Interview with Diana Charabin

It’s no secret that I’m the head cheerleader for following your dreams, listening to your inner voice, and working towards obtaining the life you’ve always dreamed of. Even if that means taking risks, or having friends and family look at you like you’ve lost your mind – because hey, that all adds to the fun of it.

But what intrigues me just as much as figuring out what I’m meant to be doing, is looking at other inspirational leap-takers and seeing what their story is. How they got to live their dreams, follow their heart, and truly live an amazingly rich and fulfilled life away from the more traditional means we’ve all come know so well.

Enter stage left…Diana Charabin. Clap, clap, clap.

I found Diana’s business, Tiny Devotions, via Kathryn Budig (another insanely talented human) who raves about the mala beads Diana makes on a regular basis. And I completely understand why, Happies. They’re amazing!

Here’s a visual of my personal favourite…

Mala of Intuition and Dreams

If you’re new to the whole mala bead scene as I was, they’re essentially a sacred necklace made from 108 beads (plus an additional 109th bead known as the guru stone), and in Tiny Devotion’s case, crystals, and bring you good luck, good energy, healing, health and fortune.

As life would have it, Diana sought refuge from her ‘boring’ Law lectures by attending a Hare Krishna run yoga studio on the Gold Coast, where she was studying and living abroad. It was there that the seed of her future was planted, after being given her first ever set of mala beads, and a piece of paper with her ‘mantra’ scribbled down.

But as so often happens, the seed was planted but the fruits didn’t flourish for some years – Diana is the first to confess that while she was interested in the concept of malas and mantras, it didn’t resonate with her uni lifestyle at the time. Hey, we’ve all been there, right?

Cut to a few years later and Diana had an Eat, Pray, Love moment. Literally. After reading the book and recognising that it was written in the same format as a mala (108 passages plus 1) her fascination with the beads reignited. So, in a moment of what appeared to be pure insanity by others, Diana followed her heart, sold all her belongings, and moved to Bali. She knew only 2 things at that time: 1. There was no way she wanted to be a lawyer anymore, and 2. She needed to go to Bali.

And the rest, as they say, is history.

But clearly, I wanted to delve deeper into this fascinating story. So, I tracked down Diana and asked her to kindly give me a moment of her time. She did. And here’s what happened…

Me: Tiny Devotions was something that grew organically, by the sounds of things, what is it that kept calling your name to fulfill this passion?

Diana: Tiny Devotions was definitely not in the “plan”. The universe totally guided me to create this community. After following my heart and retreating to Bali for 2 months a few years ago – a friend of mine Clare Merrifield and myself found ourselves spontaneously making mala beads. When I returned to Canada people would literally chase me down the street asking about the mala beads and thus the energy of the universe pushed me to make this happen.

Me: What advice do you have for women who are in a job, or career, they don’t like, but are scared to follow their dreams and start something new?

Diana: Regret is much worse then failure. It’s as simple as that for me. I cannot bare to live with regret and I also can’t do anything that I don’t feel is my passion or my path.

Me: Your malas represent the Bohemian lifestyle of living your dreams, following your passions and looking good as you do it – was this always something you lived by, or have you found that your confidence, inner guidance, and true passion has come with exploration?

Diana: There has been a lot of exploration, a lot of self study, a lot of yoga and meditation and reading and… everyday is an exploration.

Me: What is it about your malas that make them so special?

Diana: Truly, all mala beads are special. The energy that goes into them and their intention make them not jewelry but sacred pieces.

Me: What makes you happy?

Diana: Travelling, love, family, the ocean, Australia, North County, Canada, coffee, yoga, creation, community, amazing connections and friends. And my dog.

Me: How do you stay motivated, creative, and on track, both in terms of your business and your life?

Diana: I try to give myself as much freedom as possible – with travelling, exercising and yoga. And I do my best to surround myself with inspiring people. And I write a lot of goals and post it notes! And make sure I execute each and every one of them. Its not about ideas its about ideas + execution.

Me: Do you find it hard to balance life and work?

Diana: Yes, Yes, Yes. I definitely still have not figured this one out. (But I have a plan and am in the execution phase). Until then, I try to travel once a month or every other month to get out of my busy routine!

So, for any of you Happies wondering why you’re being pulled in one direction, or unsure whether to take that leap of faith, listen to Diana (and me) and DO IT! You’ve got nothing to lose and so much to gain.

Stay Happy,

Yaz xx

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9 comments

  1. Rachel Magahy · October 25, 2011

    Love this post! So inspiring. Clare is actually a friend of mine (and an amazing yoga/ pilates teacher here on the Coast, along with her sister Michelle) so it was nice to see her mentioned too. Love the point about it being ideas + execution – it’s easy to talk about it, but DOING IT is the risky bit (that comes with lots of rewards!) Rach xx

  2. casey · October 25, 2011

    Thank you for such a great post once again, so relevant to me atm (which all of your posts seem to be)! I would love to ask how do you tell if the path your on is not the right one for you? Especially if it seems one that society and your family deems as ‘good’ (ie Like in Diana’s case of becoming a lawyer).

  3. Yaz Turker · October 25, 2011

    I’m so glad you liked the post. I always love hearing about other people’s stories and also find Diana so inspiring. Casey, I like to think of it the same way I think about boyfriends – you know in your heart if they’re the right one for you, and if they’re not. Same as a job, career, university degree…whatever. You know in your heart what your passions are, and if you don’t yet, don’t worry either, they will come. Just listen to your heart and you can never go wrong. There’s no way of ‘telling’ as such, it’s more about feeling, and listening to yourself and how happy you really are. Hope that helps, Yxx

  4. casey · October 25, 2011

    Hi Yaz, thank you again. I love the boyfriend analogy! I think its also a lot of letting go of fear – fear of failure!

    I do have one more question if you dont mind sharing your opinion/advice (its a tad off topic). I am not a big alcohol drinker (well not a drinker at all) and I find that at my age (21) drinking is very much the culture and so I feel that because I do not drink I am ‘different’ and ‘boring’ in a way. Id just like to know if you were ever in the same situation and how to not let it worry you?

  5. Yaz Turker · October 26, 2011

    Hey Casey, I love your questions…

    While I’ve never been in this situation exactly, I have been in many situations where I was the ‘odd’ one out (clearly you’re not odd, you’re actually very smart, clever, and mature for your age. Far more mature than I was at 21, that’s for sure).

    I think when it comes to drinking though, especially at your age, there is this crazy expectation that it just has to be done in order to be cool or fun, and clearly that is RIDICULOUS!

    Firstly, I applaud you for your choice not to drink, I think it’s great. And secondly, I firmly believe that the more you believe in yourself, the less you care about what other people think. You have your reasons for not drinking, you know why you don’t do it, so you don’t need to prove yourself to anyone else. It’s not your job. Your job is to go out, be your gorgeous dazzling self, dance like nobody’s watching, laugh, chat up a storm, have fun and enjoy every last moment. That’s all.

    The funny thing, I’m pretty sure by you embracing your choices, and not caring what other people think, you’ll end up showing our silly drinking culture that the only difference between you and them is a hangover in the morning. And then, when you’re feeling super fresh in the morning, remember once again why you choose not to drink, stand by your choices, and be proud of yourself.

    I hope that helps,

    Yaz xx

  6. Anonymous · October 26, 2011

    ‘the more you believe in yourself, the less you care about what others think’ – reading this I felt a sense of lightness, its makes so much sense and will definitely work towards it!!

    I had also never thought of it as embracing my choices, I love that! And it is so nice not to wake up with a hangover and be able enjoy my muesli!!

  7. casey · October 26, 2011

    opps that was meant to say from casey – thanks again for some great advice!

  8. Pingback: Try This: Farmer Jo Muesli | The Happiness Cocktail
  9. Pingback: What’s your life manifesto? | The Happiness Cocktail

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