Lessons I learnt from a Balinese healer

Lessons I learnt from a Balinese healer

Lessons I learnt from a Balinese healer

I’ve come a long way since I wrote my article about my depression for the Metro a couple of years ago (If you missed it then you can read it here). Of course, there are still the occasional down days; moments where I doubt myself or require assurances, but hey, I’m only human and am in a good place. I can say with confidence that I’m a happy person and rarely suffer from anxiety anymore.

Processed with VSCOcam with c2 presetI’ve done a lot of work on myself to get to the stage I’m at now: I’ve read many books, spoken to countless people and most importantly I’ve learnt to love myself. One of the most pivotal points of my journey of happiness was my visit to a reader and healer during my trip to Bali at the beginning of the year.

I had the most incredible trip, if you haven’t been before I honestly can’t recommend it enough, you should read my ultimate guide over on my adventure page! It’s the most beautiful and magical island and it did wonders to change my perspective and outlook on life. One of the things on my Bali Bucket List was to go and see a Balinese fortune teller (well it worked for Julia Roberts in Eat, Pray, Love), and a friend of mine recommended I go and see a lady called Tunjung. Tunjung is based in Ubud, which was by far my  favourite area I visited in Bali, and I can honestly say that seeing her changed my life. I know that sounds cliche but not a day goes by that I don’t recall the advice Tunjung gave me since my hour long visit.

If you ever find yourself in Bali and aren’t totally cynical then I really recommend you pay her a visit yourself, but in the mean time I thought I would share some of the advice she gave me that could resonate with you too (I’m not going to reveal anything too personal to me).

The universe wants to help you

The universe wants to give us what we want, each time we think a thought such as “I hope x”, “I wish x” that is transmitted into the universe as energy. The problem is that it cannot define between positive and negative thoughts and energy. So imagine that everyday we pray or wish for 3 things such as: I hope I meet the man of my dreams, I hope I pass the test, I hope I get the job so I can pay my rent.

But then we spend each hour of every day worrying about the ifs and buts: What if I can’t pay my rent? I hope I don’t end up alone? What if he dumps me? What if I don’t get another job? What if I fail my exams? What if I don’t pass? What if they don’t like me?

Then that means the universe is only being hit 3 times with the positives, whilst the negatives are received 24 times – so they’re are more likely to happen.

Now whether you believe in this or not, it has been a great way to train me to worry less. I visualise the picture Tunjung wrote me every single time I worry about something. And trust me I worry a lot, and Tunjung picked up on this.

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What’s the point in worrying?

Tunjung told me a story about a friend of hers who had to move out of their house in a couple of months. She was a single mum, a teacher, and wasn’t going to make enough money to be able to afford to get a new house. Was she worried? No. But how could she not be worried I asked? And Tunjung then asked me if worrying would solve her problems and buy her a new house? Worrying would not miraculously create a financial stream. Worry could potentially make her so stressed or sick that she would not be able to work, or cause stress to her son too! There were zero benefits to come from worrying. And so she didn’t and as a result she went to work happy, and she spent quality time with her son. I actually don’t know what the outcome was, although I often think about it. And I think how many times I’ve worried about something and it’s impacted on the quality of my headspace and on my mood, which has impacted on the way I am with my friends and loved ones. IMG_1939IMG_1838

It’s free to love. 

One of things I struggle with the most is showing someone I love them. I’m talking relationships here, not friends and family. I don’t over analyse myself too much (ok, maybe that’s a massive lie), but I think I’ve hardened over the years having either been cheated on or told that I am ‘too keen’. I mean we are basically conditioned into believing that if we are open and tell someone we like them it will lead to them not being challenged or not liking us. Personally I always found this frustrating because I’ve never been about playing games, I don’t see the point, but I guess somewhere down the line of failed relationships I’ve closed myself off in order to try to protect myself. The problem with this, Tunjung told me, is that as a result people don’t know how I really feel and so I give off a different impression to how I feel, and also as a result I don’t make people feel secure or loved. In the end, I give so much of myself to every relationship that inevitably I am always hurt when any relationship fails, so I haven’t even protected myself. It’s been my mission this year to try to stop seeing openness and love as a sign of weakness but it’s definitely a working progress still. Does anyone else relate to this?


Giving is an ego 

Finally, and it was probably the point that surprised me the most to hear, Tunjung told me that giving is an ego. Now this could be giving materialistic things, but in my case I always give a lot of myself in terms of emotions and helping people. Tangent explained to me that this was my ego to make me feel like a good person, so when things went wrong I could feel like I had been such a good person and had been hard done by, or because I wanted everyone to see what a good person I was. She told me that giving of any sort is only giving if you expect nothing at all in return. If ever you give so much of yourself that you resent someone for behaving or treating you a certain way because of everything you’ve done for them, then that’s your ego. She told me if I decided how much of myself I could realistically give without compromising my own happiness and sense of worth that actually I’d be a better person because I wouldn’t feel bitterness. Honestly this has been really challenging for me because when I care about someone, whether friends, family or a boyfriend, I naturally want to give everything I can to help someone. But I’ve definitely made progress and also I walk away from the people to take advantage much faster than I used to too.



So there you go, these are the main points I took away from my visit to Tunjung and as I said I think of many of these things on a daily basis. Obviously she went into much deeper detail about specific parts of my personal life, but these are the points I thought might help you as they did me.

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I’d love to know what you think of these points, especially if they resonate with you or help you so let me know in the comments below. Also if you saw someone or did something that helped you reach a happier or calmer state I would love to hear about it too.

Speak to you very soon,

with love from ashley black



Jl. Jatayu Padang Tegal Ubud- Bali (Pertenin Body Care and Healing)


Ashley James

Ashley James

6 thoughts on “Lessons I learnt from a Balinese healer

  1. Oh Honey that was a beautiful heart felt read! I really found I could relate to pretty much most of what you was touching on. Worrying used to be a big issue for me and then one day I just stopped but anxiety for me was something I never told anyone about. I kind of pep talked myself and I decided worrying like you said doesn’t solve anything. I’m not perfect at this like I still worry from time to time but I rain it in as soon as I realise I’m doing it and try to come up with solutions if in my control. Love for me is hard I’ve closed myself off, from experience something I’ve got to work on. I won’t waffle lol but It’s so nice to hear that you’ve come so far along your journey that you are now in a happy place and it shines through you look really happy and Taft you can share this is lovely. Xxx

    1. Vicki, such a nice comment to get, thank you for reading and sharing your experience too. I love writing things like this because you discover that no one is that different people are just scared to talk about things a lot of the time. I hope to see you very soon, we should go for a Sunday roast with Pandora xxx

  2. This is a great article and I can relate to this. I think worrying is a natural way for us. Its easy to worry and difficult to be positive and occupied with things that bring happiness. I have been on a struggle worrying too much (I started a business and I try my very best to stay on the positive vibe) but I am trying to move away from this and think about things that make me happy. Have you tried reading The Secret? It is very similar to what you have said above from the lessons taught to you. It helped me through Uni and now through my business 🙂 I got the audiobook that I start my day off with. Just a recommendation.

    And with relationships, I think it would be about finding the right person and it will happen! Mine was a struggle ( i feel you on the ‘playing games’ end) but we have been strong for 7 years now. So do not lose hope with anything Ashley 🙂

    1. Hey Yakshi, Thank you so much for your incredible reply and for your great feedback. I’ve had lots of friends read the Secret, so I will have to read it too.
      I wish you all the success with your business – it sounds like you have the right attitude!
      And relationships… I don’t think there’s many good guys around, but that’s ok. 🙂

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Chapter 13: Zipolite and Mazunte, The Oaxacan coast.
Chapter 12: Diving in Cozumel
Chapter 10: Losing track of time in Tulum
Chapter 9: Love drunk in Gitano
Chapter 8: My Mayan Reading

Chapter 8: My Mayan Reading

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Chapter 6b: Infidelity at home