Travelling be it alone, with your family, your close friends or even with a group of strangers to a far-off place or even just a quick getaway is always a rewarding and exhilarating experience. It helps you evolve, learn, discover, rejuvenate and gives an overall sense of connectivity to your essence and being. Which brings you back feeling more alive!
And as we live in an age of increasing volatility and uncertainty there is tremendous stress and strain created in our bodies and mind giving us a constant feeling of tiredness and isolation. We all crave to be healthier, happier and at peace.
A retreat does just that! It helps us slow down and get in tune with ourselves again.
Here are some reasons to make the commitment to your mind, body, and soul.
1. You will get to strengthen your practice of yoga and meditation
Practicing yoga regularly can be challenging if you have a busy schedule. On a yoga retreat you will always have two classes a day scheduled which will ensure your progress and you will see positive effects more quickly.
Yoga and meditation, gives you more than just peace of mind, it gives you better physical posture, good focus on your breathing, and calmness while sitting still during meditation.
Thus, on a retreat when you get to dedicate time to these practices without any interruptions from the outside world, it helps you learn, strengthen, hone and deepen your skills.
2. You will get to eat healthy without having to do all the work
The perception of getting healthy food on retreats is often associated with boiled and bland food. But, hold on, that’s not true!!
Most retreats provide organic, healthy and delicious meals three times a day without the need to find recipes, go grocery shopping, prepare or clean the food! To top it there are also cooking classes available to assist you with recipes to take back home to enable you to continue the healthy eating journey.
3. You will detox digitally too
In a period where many of us depend so heavily on our technology to communicate personally or for business, it is essential to take a break and unplug!
While most resorts provide you with WIFI, you won’t feel the need to constantly tweet, text, update Facebook or call friends, it will feel great to unplug! Being in an exotic heritage hideaway, connecting with nature, having meaningful conversations with likeminded people and just rediscovering yourself is going to keep you occupied enough. That’s an attractive deal, what say?
4. You will make friends and memories for a lifetime
The most common question we get from people coming on a retreat is that they will be travelling alone. To them I say, around 80% of the people on the retreat are alone!
The beautiful thing about going to a retreat alone is that you are not actually alone! You are in fact in the company of people who share a common interest and passion. You are all going to learn, deepen, expand and grow and somehow the journey you go through with others in a yoga room bonds you like nothing else.
Over the short space of a week strangers become friends, all inhibitions fall away and you open yourself to sharing with learning and growing from other likeminded yogis and their life experiences.
5. You Learn something new
With the amazing retreat offerings, available these days you could take far more than a deepened practice and peace of mind away with you.
Combine yoga with learning all about Ayurveda, the sister science of yoga, or how to develop a lasting meditation and mindfulness practice. Discover the benefits of nutrition, superfoods, juicing. Rediscover your hidden or new talents for writing, painting, pottery. Learn to surf, ski, dive or even spot some rare flora and fauna! Long walks in silence or meditating in 1000 yr. old monasteries with monks!
Whatever your other passions or areas of interest, there will be a retreat out there that will help you to expand your mind as well as your body and take a new skill or interest home with you.
6. You make time for yourself
There is a huge difference between going on holiday and going on a retreat. As the word, itself signifies it’s about stepping back, going inwards and allowing yourself the treat of time out.
Quiet often holidays can be more about doing, while a retreat is simply about being. Holidays mostly involve other people and compromising on where to go and what to do. And a retreat is all about you and listening to your own needs at all times.
Most retreats will encourage you to focus on doing less and being more. At the very least, time away from your day–to day life will leave you feeling refreshed, renewed, re-inspired and deeply rested. A retreat can help you to gain clarity, seek for deeper truth and possibly even find the answers you are searching for.
7. You get inspired
At its core, yoga is an opportunity to calm our minds through the discipline of physical postures and meditation. As the mental chatter decreases, one can find an open space that is fertile ground for new ideas and ways of thinking. A yoga retreat gives a person the opportunity to quiet their mind, and find inspiration that can add value to their work, relationships, and many other areas of their life.
Bonus Reason: Because you are worth it!!
We often do much for others without even stopping to fill ourselves back up. You probably wouldn’t think twice about treating or spending money on a loved one, yet you would think twice and probably three or four times before doing the same for yourself. Then come the excuses, oh I should not! This money can be spent elsewhere! Do I need this?!
Just remember we lead by example! Unless we are truly happy from within its hard to make someone else happy. Unless you are healthy you won’t have the strength to keep others healthy. Unless you are inspired you will always fall short to Inspire!!
Haven’t been on a retreat yet? Now is a good time to book one and experience the bliss!
Josephine Sophia is the CEO of Sugarcane Elephants, wellness travel & boutique resorts representation company in MEA. Having lived in many cities from Dubai to Colombo, travelled extensively, fluent in 6 languages, Josephine is a global citizen at heart and a hospitality management graduate. More details about Sugarcane Elephants: