What Is Personal Retreat?

Why would you go for a personal retreat? Among the things to do alone, intentional retreat is very beneficial. At times of psychological stress, anxiety from feeling lack of control or search for inspiration and meaning, dedicated time alone is very powerful condition for healing, inner transformation and gaining clarity.

What Makes Personal Retreat Beneficial.

  • Solitude.
    Availability of solitude on retreat is the most fundamental condition for restoration of well-being, spiritual recovery, rejuvenation and creative insight. It is like a setup for a very well-equipped operation room which is isolated from unwanted influences and distractions. 
    Solitude allows to bring your intention for the outcome of the retreat into focus. It allows to see clearer what you like to change in your life. In solitude, it is much easier to manage distractions for the purpose of slowing down racing flow of thoughts and mental reactions. Even periods of solitude on retreat provide essential condition for stabilizing attention.
    Stable attention brings about mindfulness function of the mind, without which a whole lot of details that weave our lives moment to moment are passed unnoticed.

  • Introspection.
    Even when your individual retreat is not happening in complete solitude, introspection — inward focus of your attention is bound to bring your awareness to a deeper source of your being. 
    Use of introspection on retreat can lead to increased awareness of yourself, freedom from limiting beliefs and empowerment to change. 
    In order to address anxiety, apply introspection to set clear priorities in your life. In search for life's meaning, use the instrument of introspection to define your personal life's purpose.

  • Self-Care.
    Another direct outcome of a personal retreat improved mental and physical health. If you are going on personal retreat prepared, you can maximize health benefits of a retreat. It will come as a stress reduction through elimination of mental hyperactivity that is so much a part of a modern lifestyle of multi-tasking. 
    If you choose to do some intentional body work practices on retreat, then you may feel a much pronounced outcome of relaxation and mental equilibrium.

    Another direct health benefit of a retreat may come as a surprise: increased sense of well-being rising from a restful sleep and an openness of a day structure that gives a room for spontaneity of creative inspiration. You may include some bodywork or hiking that will promote connection to your body and increase self-awareness.

How To Prepare For Transformative Retreat.

  • Clear Intentions.
    As you set out to go for a holistic retreat, consider your intentions for it. Attempt to respond clearly to why are you going. The clearer you are, the more your will be receptive to change — the results you are looking to get. It is like preparing the soil. It doesn't matter whether you are going to simply relax and recover from pressures of ordinary life or you're going for a spiritual nourishment and training. By setting up clear intentions for personal retreat, you eliminate wondering and confusion while in it.

  • Take Self-Nurturing Essentials.
    With understanding the purpose of the retreat take the essentials that support your movement in that direction. It would be counterproductive to take alone anything that would be a distraction from your experience of simplicity. 
    Choose your inputs carefully. It could be a nurturing book, guided meditations or relaxing music if silence feels a bit extreme. It is good to remember that whole purpose of retreat is to minimize input that keeps us distracted. Take a notebook to record your realizations and insights.

  • Suspend Attachments.
    Before you are going on retreat prepare the world for your absence. You could set up automatic vacation email responses. Announce on the Facebook that you will not be available. Let your clients, employees and all people in communication with you know that temporarily you will not be available. 
    This is important for the purpose of minimizing outside interference with the retreat process. It is like a surgeon preparing to perform an operation: he changes clothes, sterilizes hands and puts gloves on, engages attention and so on. If she gets interrupted with business outside the operation, it would be a detriment to the outcome of a procedure.

Directory of Various Retreat Centers

How To Be On Retreat.

  • Relax.
    Put a foundation for a personal retreat — relax. Tell your mind to disengage from habitual treadmill of doing. Gently allow yourself to move into simply being with yourself. Slow down in all mundane activities; from brushing your teeth to biting into food. Turn your attention to immediate environment and sensations of your body.

  • Spiritual Practices.
    Use spiritual practices to effectively support your internal transformation in retreat. As much as you allow yourself practice immersion into silence. Silence is the environment in which it is much easier to observe own perception and its effect on relationship with the world.To further increase personal transformation on retreat and to bring relaxation to mind overstimulated by tasks and fears generating compulsions and anxieties, you may want to implement a regular practice of meditation
  • Doing Yoga on retreat would be very important as it provides very powerful method to relax mind through the ground of the body tactile sensations.

  • Recognize Insight.
    Remarkable quality of retreat is its progressive increase of mental clarity. In time some realization is bound to happen: you might notice that the way of being you left when you went for retreat is not something that you would like to return to. You might see much clearer what is more valuable to invest your energy. You may be encouraged to change some priorities or you may desire a completely new life vision.