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Life and Work with Jana Rife

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jana Rife.

Jana, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I began blending essential oils and crafting natural body products over 20 yrs ago. I was looking for natural remedies and really enjoyed the research and process. It continued as a hobby until starting Hanalei Bath in 2012. I have since received a certification in aromatherapy and a diploma in aromatic medicine. I enjoy teaching aromatherapy and soap making classes in my community. I am a member of NAHA and a board of director for the Handcrafted Soap and Cosmetic Guild.

While working a corporate job, I experienced the many symptoms of stress. I started taking yoga classes to relieve stress and increase my flexibility from running. After feeling the calming benefits of yoga, I was hooked. I enrolled in a 200-hour yoga teacher training program. Having a love for stand up paddling and water, I flew to Key West to train for my World Paddle Association instructor certification and paddleboard (SUP) Yoga teacher certification. After completing all of my training, I started Hanalei SUP Yoga. I know teach SUP, paddleboard yoga on the lakes in north Georgia and traditional yoga in a studio. I also hold day and weekend SUP yoga retreats in the north Georgia mountains and at the beach.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
My biggest challenge has been fear and self-doubt. Fearing I would fail or would not be well received. I can’t imagine where I would be if I didn’t live my passion. Fear could have held me back and almost did. My advice would be to do the things that make your heart happy. If you notice you make excuses for why you can’t do what you enjoy, notice where that is coming from. most likely fear or doubt. Yoga and meditation can be an incredible source of self-confidence, to know oneself better and to remove the obstacles that stand in our way from living our truth, our passion.

When I was working towards my diploma in aromatic medicine, I thought I was way over my head. It was a very challenging course and many case study hours. I also experienced self-doubt through my SUP level I and II certification training. Both were very challenging training on the water. I recall thoughts during my first training wondering what I was doing and if I got in over my head. Obviously, I completed all of my training with no problems and received positive feedback from all of my instructors. Looking back I realize it was all just self-doubt and fear.

Please tell us about Hanalei Bath and Hanalei SUP Yoga.
My Hanalei Bath clients love my essential oil soaps, bath salts, whipped body butter and aromatherapy blends. I enjoy creating custom blends for clients that deal with pain, anxiety, stress, and insomnia. I express my creativity with soap making. My cupcake and pie soaps look good enough to eat! I share my passion by teaching others how to make soap from scratch and how to blend essential oils safely in body products.

When I’m not working at my businesses, I’m teaching aromatherapy and yoga at an outpatient drug and alcohol recovery center.

My SUP classes provide a mini vacation from the stresses of the day. Paddleboarding (SUP) is usually on the bucket list and fear might be holding them back. Once they try it, they fell strong, empowered and fearless. My classes are challenging with some light-hearted fun. We never take ourselves too seriously. If we fall off, that is part of the fun! SUP reminds us that when we fall, we get right back up and learn from it. I always end my SUP Yoga classes with an aromatic cold compress of “Oil Of Tranquility”. It is my signature essential oil blend. I give a guided relaxation (savasana) so my clients can experience a moment of quiet stillness. Reminding them that they hold the power with their breath and they can always return to that inner peace and calm.

When I’m not working, I am volunteering for SENC Inc Rescue. (A Newfoundland dog rescue group. I also serve on the board for the Handcrafted Soap and Cosmetic Guild a non-profit organization that represents handcrafters from around the world.

Do you think there are structural or other barriers impeding the emergence of more female leaders?
I think our barriers are expected an appearance. Some believe a yoga practitioner should look a certain way. Yoga is for everybody and everybody can benefit. Especially with the daily stress that we all deal with. It is sad if someone does not experience yoga because they think they are not flexible enough or thin enough. Yoga and meditation can bring so much calm. There are so many health benefits of both. Some may think they can’t meditate but really it’s as simple as connecting to your breath. Taking a few quiet minutes to close your eyes and connect with your breath can make such a difference in lowering stress levels.


  • Intro To SUP Class $35.
  • SUP Yoga Class $40.
  • Handmade Soap $7
  • All Natural Whipped Body Butter $17
  • Essential Oil Roll-On Blends $12
  • Aromatherapy Bath Salts $12

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Tracy Hoexter photography, Adam Grogin

Getting in touch: VoyageATL is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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