Leading yoga retreats has been one of the most empowering and fulfilling adventures of my life. After studying abroad in Thailand back in 2012 I returned with a great sense of confidence and clarity on what I wanted to do with my life. I became a yoga instructor in Baltimore and decided, soon after, to pursue my advanced training. We were asked to create a project that we would present at the end of our training and that's when I decided I wanted to offer people a condensed version of what I experienced while I was abroad for a few months. I was driven to create a week long yoga retreat that would embody every essence of what I would want to experience if I were to go on one. Combining adventure, with history and education through my anthropology studies, excursions to fuel our bodies, to deepen my yoga practice and provide an empowerment course to inspire others to find or rediscover themselves and what they truly want.
With that being said, here are 5 reasons to go on a yoga retreat:
1. You can travel alone
Imagine trying to gather all of your friends to go to somewhere you've been dreaming about because you feel too uncomfortable traveling solo. On a yoga retreat, you can feel safe and apart of a group without having to rally up your crew. It is encouraged to even travel alone as you can make so many new friends and experience a place completely for yourself.
2. Deepen your yoga practice
People often ask, "Do I need to be like a super yogi to go on a retreat?" The answer is, absolutely not. A yoga retreat is open to anyone looking to develop their yoga practice. Whatever level you are at, you will walk away with a great understanding of both the physical and philosophical aspects of the practice. Even if you practice yoga just for the week of the retreat, you'll learn so much about yourself and how to integrate healthier habits into your lifestyle.
Have a week to connect to yourself. Your wants, your needs, your fears, your doubts. Slow down and reflect on where you've been. Reconnect with nature, see the world from a different perspective and make friends with a group of like minded people. We live in such a hectic world and our ambitions can so often get clouded by the influence of others. Get clear on what motivates you and if you're not sure on where you want to go next, this is the perfect place to find out.
4. Appreciate where you are
While away for a week we are given the opportunity to refresh our gratitude for all of the things we have. You'll be excited to come home and feel more confident, re-energized and ready to take on your dreams and goals. You'll be more aware of the connection of each moment and find the lesson in all of the big and small challenges that you confront. You'll be more in tune with yourself and be more present for the people around you.
5. It's an investment... IN YOURSELF
So often people say, "one day I'll go on a retreat," or "not yet" or "I wish I could." We forget that through all of the stuff we need to do, that we are first priority. In order to get everything we want accomplished and support the people around us, we must first take care of ourselves. We pay to look good, to have a nice car, to be fully caffeinated, even intoxicated, but we often don't pay for once in a lifetime experiences of travel, friendship and restoration. We forget that life is meant to be lived and that every moment is so valuable. Don't wait to live the life you want. Invest in few month's worth of Starbucks visits vs. a trip of a lifetime? You tell me what you'd choose.
Yup, three opportunities to explore the world and put checks in boxes on your bucket list.