The Reason you CAN (and should) go on a Retreat

Last May, I made the decision to attend (not lead) a yoga retreat in Mexico.

Did I desperately need to escape from some personal drama and concerns??? YES.

Did it feel indulgent and strange to leave all my obligation and my loved ones for an entire week? YES

Did I feel I couldn’t and shouldn’t spend the $$$ on it? YES

Did I feel guilty? YES


There are a million reasons why you shouldn’t spend a full week nurturing and pampering yourself for a week. Yet, there is one big reason you absolutely SHOULD.  

In a world that is so externally driven, where we are trying to fit in, feel like we are doing things “right”, caught up in overthinking, over-planning, and overdoing… The mind NEEEEEDS a break!!!  

Because we FORGET, continually, that peace and joy aren’t outside of us, they are within us.  (Hello unconscious and unecessary spending, eating and drinking!)

In this overwhelming, fast-paced world we live in, it can take a few days to truly allow oneself to get still and for the mind to quiet down and settle.  It can take a few days to release and shift our habitual thinking and doing patterns.  And, then, once we do, it takes a few more days to ABSORB and BE with the stillness and the settling in order to truly FEEL a connection to ourselves, in order to feel inner peace and inner joy, and in order for all of it to integrate into every cell of our being and every moment of our lives. 

When I went to Mexico last May, I went for myself.  But, what I came back with was for everyone and everything else.  You see, nothing dramatically changed or shifted in my personal life or my relationships, but what shifted was ME and my reactions.  Instead of resisting and worrying and overthinking, I showed up into my world with more presence, more joy, and more peace.

So, CAN (and should) YOU go on a retreat?

Early Morning Arrival

What a gorgeous day… blue skies, a fresh breeze, and the smell of summer lingering as I walk happily in the the light step of my flip flopped feet.  I’m so grateful for this day.   Yesterday- May 28th, 2010-  was  my last evening on the schedule of a Bar/Restaurant I have been working for for almost 8 years!  My “means to an end,” as they say… has ended!!! And today – May 29th, 2010- is the first day stepping into the life I have been working towards in many ways- and that is a life where I wake up with the Sun!!!  Dear Tomorrow-at-5:45am… I can’t wait to see you.

I always knew I was a morning person.  When I was in high school, I would wake up at 5:30am to do a Kathy Smith workout video so I could get the most optimal workout in.  In college, I purposefully scheduled my classes at 8am so I could focus.  My energy is most abundant in the morning.  It is when I am productive, alert, in-tune, and most present.   I love early mornings especially.  I love that time when the majority of others are still sleeping, and I feel like I have the world to myself- even for just a moment.  I love watching the sunrise.  I love the calm of the ocean.  I love the stillness in the air.  I love the chirping of the birds and the crow of the Rooster (if I lived on a farm, that is, I know I would love it).  I love the idea that each morning is a new beginning to a new day, and I love setting aside the time to meditate and set an intention for my day.  I love knowing that I have the whole day ahead of me still to do what I need to do or be where I need to be.  I could go on and on.  But, the main thing is that I know I love it.  And, I know I have been denying myself this time because of the nature of my serving job and the late nights.  So, here I am- So grateful because of where I have been, where I am going, and where I am now.  There is nothing like the feeling of knowing you are living the life you want.  I hope all of you reading this are able to feel this as well- whether it’s now or in the future.  It may take some time- 8 years, perhaps?..But it’s worth it- because, after all, you really quite don’t know where you are until you know where you’ve been.