And it's June...! Just like that.
How are you feeling about this new month? Are you ready for it? I’m fresh off of my yoga retreat to Costa Rica and am feeling totally prepared to reenter the real world and jump into this new month. But let me tell you, it took almost an entire week to slow down and let go...
While away this past week, I was reminded of the importance of taking a “retreat” on at least a yearly basis. Not necessarily a yoga retreat per se, but a retreat from your regular routine and your daily life, in order to refresh, recharge, and get reacquainted with yourself and your passions.
As we sat in our closing circle on Friday night, going around the room and talking about our takeaways from the week in Costa Rica, I was touched by the number of people who found that by disconnecting for just 6 days, they were able to do some much-needed healing, growing, and introspection.
Some retreaters were able to reconnect with their love of sketching or writing. Some recommitted to their yoga practice and/or to healthy eating. Others indulged in a treatment or massage nearly every day, basking in the nurturing properties of these spa-like sessions. Some simply napped in a hammock or read by the pool, and just enjoyed the silence that comes from being unreachable and unaccountable.
When you have everything taken care of for you—your meals, your cleaning, your daily agenda, your exercise--all of the sudden, you have space to go deeper. When we don’t have to think about all of the little logistics of daily life, we have more time to think about the big things, and that’s when transformation takes place and things come into focus.
I know that taking a retreat sounds like a cushy indulgence, but if possible, I want to urge you to shift your thinking. I've come to the conclusion that retreating from life at least once per year (or more often, if possible) is no longer a negotiable, but instead, should be mandatory for all.
You don’t have to leave the country and live at a resort center for a week to retreat, but I think that you do need to get out of your normal surroundings so that you avoid distractions. Go camping, rent a cabin for a weekend, house-sit for someone for a week—whatever you can do to get out of your routine and make some time for yourself.
I promise, at least one amazing insight or change will come out of this time away.
On the Cape, early June is referred to as the “shoulder season”—the time when it’s beautiful and warm but the tourists haven’t yet descended upon us.
In a way, I think this is an interesting way to think about June. It’s the quiet before the “storm” of the summer; For some, this “storm” manifests as lots of travel, having the kids home from school, and/or many summer events, and for others, especially those who live in seasonal areas, it manifests as months of craziness and lots of work.
So, no matter what the summer holds for you, I want to ask you to do one thing this Shoulder Season: Please schedule a retreat for yourself. If you can’t physically get away this summer, get creative in how you make this happen, but make sure that you spend some time JUST BEING over the next couple of months. It’s life-changing, I tell you!
And with that, lets indulge in some monthly inspiration...