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Tanja used to work in the financial sector for international and Swiss firms. In 1997, she attended her first Yoga class and was instantly fascinated by this mind body science. In 2003, she met Joey and spent almost a year in India, where she deepened her practice and knowledge about Yoga. Back in Zurich, Tanja refined her Yoga practice and resigned her job at a Swiss Bank in 2011 to work full-time as a Yoga teacher.

A few questions for Tanja

In 1997, I started attending yoga classes in Zürich. But it was in 2003 in India when I met Joey that I began to understand the holistic and spiritual aspects of yoga. Joey also introduced me to his teacher Father Joe Pereira (Founder of Kripa Foundation and senior Iyengar teacher), whose workshops I attend regularly even today. From 2004 to 2013, I attended Iyengar Yoga classes taught by Vasili Vlachos twice a week in Zurich. I am currently also studying with Aadil Palkhivala (co-founder of Purna Yoga), whom B.K.S. Iyengar personally taught since the age of seven. Furthermore, since 2006, I have regularly attended Joey’s classes and workshops.

After working in the financial sector for several years, I was mentally and emotionally wrecked at a relatively young age. I was trained at one of the most successful American investment banks in London and New York, which I loved, but something was missing. My inner being was calling for peace and change, and a chain of circumstances brought me to the land of yoga. In 2003, I left my well-paying job and career, and took a flight to India. That is where I met Joey and my life started to take an entirely new turn.

When I met Father Joe for the first time, he put me on a set of yoga asanas and taught me how to bring the mind into the heart through the prayer of the heart method. That started my inner transformation. I found an inner peace and balance that brought stability in my life. Gradually, I was able to change things in my life with which I was not happy.

Yes, in 2003, Joey took me to a Vipassana meditation retreat. Meditation was something alien to me then and I was not sure if I would survive those 10 days. But it was great! Whenever I was in India later on, I attended Patrick San Francesco’s golden light meditation. Since several years, I have been practising the twin hearts meditation developed by Master Choa Kok Sui und lately started to practice other meditations by this master. 

By the end of 2009, we rented our first studio, where I started to teach twice a week. Finally, in spring 2011, I was ready for the big change. I left my job as a Senior Sales Officer at a Swiss Bank for good and followed the calling of my heart. (I had re-entered the financial sector upon my return from India in 2004).

I am constantly learning more in the field of yoga. This is very important for a teacher. If you stop being a student, you can no longer be a good teacher. And I want to share my experiences so that more people find inner peace and balance in their life.