Have you been struggling to find meaning in your life? Is your mind overwhelmingly cluttered and busy?
In our fast-paced, high-stress lifestyles it’s easy to get stuck in our heads, worrying about the future and pondering on past events. This can lead to a total disconnection from our spiritual self. We feel unmotivated, uninspired, and lose our sense of purpose.
What we need in this situation is to reconnect to our inner self, and going on a spiritual retreat is the best way to do that. In this article, I’ll explain what happens on a spiritual retreat and how going on one can reignite your soul!
What is a Spiritual Retreat?
So what is a spiritual retreat? What does going on a spiritual retreat mean?
This type of retreat is designed to help you slow down the pace of life and switch off all the external and internal noise. They will help you reconnect with yourself while also allowing some much-needed time to recharge your batteries.
Spiritual retreats usually include various traditional practices, such as yoga, meditation, qi-gong, reiki, etc. They are typically set in a peaceful, nature-rich location and can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks.
The teachings you’ll encounter at spiritual retreats are often based on ancient mysticism and traditional customs. They can help with opening your mind to new ways of thinking and ways of interacting with the world around you and within you.
6 Benefits Of Spiritual Retreats
If you’re still unsure whether going on a spiritual retreat is worth it, read on. Here are six of the many reasons why you should book that retreat you’ve been eyeing!
To Switch Off From Technology
In our fast-paced modern lifestyles, we are constantly connected to technology. With this much external distraction, it’s almost impossible to pause and self-reflect.
You take a break from technology on a spiritual retreat and replace screen time with nature time. In fact, one of the first things the retreat facilitators will advise when you arrive is to keep your phone and laptop switched off. By doing so, our minds finally have the chance to declutter.
To Process Challenging Past Experiences
Have you ever had something traumatic happen in your life, and your instinct was to ignore it, stay busy and keep moving? We unconsciously do this because we know slowing down and processing what happened will bring us emotional pain.
Instead of taking the time to process challenging past experiences, we push them down and down, hoping they will disappear. Well, this does not happen. Instead, any trauma we have not worked through will resurface at some point in the future.
However, by taking a spiritual retreat, we open up a safe space to process whatever needs to be worked through. Sure, it will be uncomfortable, but by doing so, we free ourselves from that suffering and fully move on.
To Find Or Rediscover Your Purpose
It’s so easy to get stuck in a rut, doing the same thing every day without any clear direction of what we’re working towards. After a while this makes us feel unfulfilled and like we’re lacking something. That thing is our life purpose.
Whether you’re still trying to figure out what you want from life or you feel like you’re moving further and further away from what you thought your purpose was, a spiritual retreat can help.
The inner silence and stillness we experience on a retreat allows us to go within ourselves and do some much-needed self-reflection.
The change in environment and lifestyle allows us to take a step back and look at our life from different perspectives. We suddenly see what we’ve been neglecting or doing wrong and come away with many powerful insights into how we can realign our life to our values and purpose.
To Feel Renewed Passion, Creativity & Inspiration
Along with discovering our purpose, a spiritual retreat can spark our creative juices, fill us with inspiration and new ideas, and rediscover the enthusiasm we once had for our career / relationship / life.
This is the difference between a spiritual retreat and a traditional vacation. With the latter, you don’t take time to pause and go within, which is where proper rest and replenishment lie. As a result, we often feel more tired after a vacation than before. But the opposite can be true for spiritual retreats.
To Cultivate A Regular Spiritual Practice
Spiritual retreats don’t just improve your mindset and well-being in the short term. The practices, methods, and techniques you learn on a retreat will provide you with a toolbox of self-care activities to turn into a daily ritual.
For example, you might learn a new meditation technique that works better for you than the one you were using previously. Or you may discover a different yoga style, energy healing practice, or a breathing technique that helps you start your day with clarity and focus.
Spiritual retreats can also help us let go of bad habits and replace them with healthier ones, such as not checking our phones in the morning or eating dinner without the TV switched on.
The longer the retreat, the easier it is to take what you’ve learned and put it into your daily life back home. This is because you’ve already started to build a new habit, which makes it easier to continue doing it when you get home.
To Meet Like-Minded People
While spiritual retreats are mainly about reconnecting with ourselves, many also allow us to connect with others. The people you meet on the retreat will likely share some of the same views, interests, and challenges as you. Sharing your experience with like-minded people in a safe, supportive setting can be a beautiful thing that promotes healing and growth.
Some spiritual retreats include practices that encourage this connection to occur, such as sharing circles, group activities, and social events. Other retreats, such as silent retreats, encourage you to search for the answers within instead.
Before booking your spiritual retreat, decide which one of these styles is best suited for you. Moreover, be sure to read the reviews of a retreat before booking, as reviews are the best way to get a sense of what the experience will be like.
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Recommended Spiritual Retreats
If you’re thinking that all sounds good and you’d like to give it a try, here’s a selection of my favourite spiritual yoga retreats around the world. If you’d like to see more recommendations please read my article on the most spiritual places in the world to take a retreat.
India. and Rishikesh in particular, have long been the home of spiritual yoga practice. This retreat, nestled in the foothills of the Himalaya mountains, is one of the most authentic and affordable on offer.
- Twice daily mantra chanting.
- Satkarma cleansing exercises.
- Breathwork and pranayama practice.
- Yoga philosophy lessons.
Daily hatha yoga classes and all yogic teachings are included in the price, as are all your (vegetarian) meals and drinks. There’s one included excursion to a local temple or nature spot, plus the option to do more at an additional cost.
Accommodation is in basic shared or private rooms, with air conditioning available for an extra fee.
While it might not be the ideal retreat for someone who’s looking for pampering and relaxation, this retreat is perfect for anyone who wants to deep dive in to classical Indian yoga, it’s philosophies, and it’s lifestyle.
Prices from €373 / $399
If the spirituality of traditional Balinese culture is calling to you then definitely check out this retreat run by BaliTrees where you’ll be living right within the local community and following their customs and practices.
- Homestay with a local family, or opt for a private room.
- Twice daily Balinese Watukaru yoga sessions.
- Daily offerings and village activities.
- Waterfall and beach excursions.
During this retreat, you can bed down either in a homestay or private bungalow accommodation. Homestay means you will stay at a local family house, which is designed for guests who want to experience Balinese village life up close.
This is a unique Bali yoga retreat that really immerses you into the everday life of the village and it’s inhabitants. You’ll be treated like family and experience a truly peaceful, spiritual undertaking.
Prices from €225 / $240
For a truly unique spiritual experience in the USA you should consider this 3 day retreat in Yucca Valley hosted by Julia Quena Kavi.
- Dynamic and guided meditations.
- Daily hatha yoga class.
- Ecstatic dance, cleansing ceremonies and spiritual workshops.
- Ice bath, sound bath and hypnosis.
There’s a lot of varied activities across the three day retreat. Some are mainstays of yoga retreats and others will introduce you to new practices in the esoteric arts.
During the retreat you can choose to stay in a shared yurt, a private tent, a trailer or at a room in the house. The location is a beautiful and serene 12 acre site surrounded by the Joshua tree forest with views to volcanic lava buttes.
As there are only a couple of yoga classes, this retreat would be best for someone looking to spirituality for self healing and deeper self knowledge, rather than exercise and relaxation. The introduction to so many forms of healing and celebration in such a unique environment makes this retreat ideal for an open minded spiritual seeker.
Dates in September and October.
Prices from €468 / $500
Final Thoughts On Reasons To Go On A Spiritual Retreat
Whether you’re seeking to heal past trauma, are on a path of self-discovery, or need to slow down the pace of life, a spiritual retreat is a good idea. These are just a handful of the benefits of spiritual retreats, as the experience is different for everyone and only by attending will you fully understand how much growth is possible.
Have you been on a spiritual retreat before? What was the biggest takeaway you got from it? Let us know in the comments.
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