First Published on The Wellness Universe Blog of the Day on May 23, 2017 http://blog.thewellnessuniverse.com/10-ways-create-retreat/ By creating a retreat for yourself, you are basking in self-love which not only benefits you, it helps all of those with whom you come in contact. Indulging in self-care is not a selfish act. As mentioned in the preflight message, should the need for oxygen become necessary, place the mask on yourself first, then assist others. We can’t help others when we are on the verge of collapse or unconscious ourselves.
Let’s visit a few applicable meanings of the word retreat as defined in Webster’s American Family dictionary:
- The act of withdrawing, as into privacy
- A place of refuge, seclusion, or privacy
- A period of withdrawal, as for meditation
Don’t all of the above sound amazing?
We live in such a frenziedly paced world in which the reward for doing more is to have even more to do. Our body needs to rest and replenish often to attain balance. I also believe an important part of retreating is to step away and gain perspective on the situation. By stepping away, we give our self space, we are better able to see the situation clearly and garner a better perspective. Think about sitting in the front row of the movie theatre versus sitting further back and being able to more clearly see the entire screen; that’s perspective.
Below are suggestions for 10 ways you can create a no-cost, low-cost retreat for yourself:
- Create an altar/sacred space in a corner of your home or workspace with favorite items which delight your heart every time you gaze upon them.
- During a busy day, daydream for five minutes about your happy place. It’s the next best thing to being there. How does it make you feel? How does the air against your skin feel? What is the best thing about your happy place? Imagining it increases endorphins: the feel-good hormones within our bodies.
- Indulge in a healthy snack or beverage during the course of your busy day. Enjoy your lunch away from your workspace. Retreat outdoors or into a beautiful setting.
- Plan to step away for a short time out in nature. Coordinate with a friend or loved one to watch the kids, grandkids…or cover your responsibilities while you delight in nature.
- Meet with a friend or loved one who “fills your cup”, who uplifts and supports you. Enjoy every second of your time together. Make it a drama-free zone.
- Indulge in a hobby that you love. Create something with your own hands.
- Retreat to the tub or shower after grabbing some Epsom salts, coconut oil and baking soda from the pantry or grocery store. Indulge in a luxurious bath or shower. Use candles, essential oil, soft music and treat yourself as a beloved (because you are a beloved).
- Make an artistic date with yourself for two hours. Attend a movie, concert, art display, presentation or museum exhibit by yourself. This is a directive from Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way”, she recommends during her course that you do this once a week.
- Visit a nearby park or nature center. Enjoy the beauty of nature. You can walk, bike or take a scenic drive and enjoy the solitude and beauty. You can journal, meditate or engage in whatever delights your heart.
- Plan a getaway, either alone or with a beloved, and indulge in activities which bring you peace and restore your sense of calm so that you return to your life (or responsibilities) rejuvenated and refreshed.
Here’s to you, beautiful one, as you make yourself a priority by creating a retreat as a treat for yourself and, ultimately, for the benefit of those with whom you come in contact each day. For more ideas about retreating to nature and increasing your level of joy, check out my latest book “On a Path of Joy”, Vol. Two http://bit.ly/2OAPOJbook.