Updated: Oct 17
I don't suppose it's very unique to want to earn a living running retreats. I mean, what could be more fun? What could be better? Well, I'm starting to discover that alot of things could be easier. This business of creating a space for joy and luxury and healing and connection and growth isn't for the faint of heart.
I think it's because it's so hard to convince women that they deserve to take a break. And worse, that they can figure it out how to pull it off. We all dream of it - a weekend of nothing but comfort and exploration and connection. Who doesn't like the image of warmth and laughter and acceptance and quiet reflection and crisp awakenings. I mean, seriously.
But like I said, it's not as easy as one might hope. Retreats require a massive amount of energy, knowledge and capacity to run well.
The first question is who wants to go on a transformational, mindful retreat meant to uplift and inspire women seeking a place to reset, get grounded and course-correct their lives. I'll tell you who - everyone. All the women do. But most won't. Most won't because we are wired to deny ourselves what we most need. After food, shelter and physical safety, we start to deny ourselves much of what would actually allow us to live greater, richer lives. We do this because we have few models of healthy self-care, we hear few generous assumptions about women who choose to meet their own needs and even fewer women who fully believe that they can achieve deep, profound change by giving themselves permission to step out of their life for a moment to take a breath and remember who they are.
Some women will even cast shame or judgement on those who DO choose to indulge in such a thing as a retreat, and/or look on enviously, expressing their own desire to go, along with their lack of means (time, money, availability) to be able to go themselves.
So let me begin and end with this truth: we are meant to live connected - to ourselves deep inside and to others. And some of us lucky ducks have community built-in or we actively create communities of our own. But sadly, more of us are lonely these days, feeling like we don't really belong, aren't really understood and feel we are wading, knee deep, in this complex, emotional life, all on our own.
The medicine for this ailment of the soul is hard to heal when we live lives that rarely slow down enough to nurture old connections, much less unearth and foster new ones.
Retreats, beyond their obvious benefits of relaxation and rejuvenation,
are a modern day answer to this dilemma! They may be created by design, but they are, in my experience, experiences that foster natural, organic, lasting connection. There is nothing as pure and true as the connections made by women who come in to a space together with the shared intention, of finding peace and growth and acceptance and happiness.
There is sometimes a divide between what science or authorities tell us we should feel and think and what we experience directly, ourselves. In the case of retreats, this isn't the case. Research shows that wellness retreats can lead to substantial improvements in health and well-being. Taking time out to focus on your health, find emotional and physical healing, and learn tools to help you live a healthier and more empowered life could ultimately help you unlock your full human potential.
We are meant to live in connection.
We are also meant to have time to think and observe ourselves in response to the world. Transformational retreats allow us to remember, to reconnect and reclaim who we are.
After a good retreat - a well thought out, well run retreat - you go home elevated and inspired again toward the life you are living. With new tools, ideas and clarity (not to mention a resting heart-rate) to meet the challenges of day-to-day life.