If you are planning on embarking upon a wellness retreat, chances are this is pretty serious business. You have most likely hit that point where you are ready to transform your life in some way, shape or form but you have no idea how to go about satiating this inkling to seek within yourself.
According to the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine wellness retreats have lasting, measurable health benefits. Dr. Eva Selhub, medical doctor and resilience coach points to a study that concludes that six weeks after going on retreat, you can still enjoy the benefits you received on a retreat, unlike a same old, same old vacation.
We’ve heard this before, wellness retreats seek to fortify the body, mind and soul connection, decrease anxiety and depression and improve self-compassion and a sense of spirituality, among many other things.
Wellness retreats have become extremely popular in the last several years as we are looking for a deeper, more profound experience with the precious time we have away from our daily grind. You don’t have to look far to come across ads, articles, blog posts or social media that are all abuzz and lit up about the latest, the best, that wellness retreat you need to attend immediately. But how do you really choose the best retreat?
Start with yourself. Tune inside and listen to your inner voice: What do you feel like doing?
What does your heart desire? A mindfulness and meditation retreat that will help you tone down the outside noise and create that inner space you need for more clarity and calm centeredness? A yoga retreat to rebalance your energies and bring more focus into your life? A fitness bootcamp style retreat? A weight-loss and/or detox retreat? A transformative finding your feminine retreat? How about some surfing mixed into your experience? Or try one of the foodie fanatic destinations geared toward the culinary-inclined!
Retreats come in all flavors and there is a retreat for addressing many of our current life challenges and also joys. But what they all have in common is that they are about the one and only – YOU. You choose what you fancy and need and the clearer you are about your desires, the easier it will be to find the retreat that reflects what you so desperately need.
First thing’s first and keep in mind, the world is your oyster!
Alone or together? Self-guided, professional guidance or group support?
Who is coming with you, if anyone? If you feel that this is your time and you are going to spend it solo doing the me-time thing, try destinations like the Westin or Even Hotels. They have invested heavily recently to turn their hotels in wellness heavens for the YOU.
If you are looking for a personal consultation in a custom designed retreat, you can’t possibly go wrong with one of the established destination spas like Canyon Ranch, Ti Sana Retreat, Chiva Som, or Como Shambhala. Let experienced health professionals take the lead and go through their handpicked treatments that will restore your body, mind and soul.
In the mood for a group experience that provides gentle, non-intrusive support from like-minded people, some guided group sessions, plenty of time to look after yourself and social evening get togethers? Go on a scheduled retreat at one of the established retreat centers such as Omega, Kripalu, Esalen, Grail Springs. or Hollyhock.
If you prefer a smaller group setting in a more upscale environment, you will find high-end wellness retreats presented by top-notch wellness experts at places such as The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Canada, Rythmia in Costa Rica, or Kamalaya on Koh Samui, Thailand.
And last but not least, let’s say you are looking for a corporate retreat with a wellness component, where you can mind your stress and coalescence in nature whilst sprinkling some work into the itinerary. We highly recommend properties like Qii House Lorne who have done a masterful job of creating an environment that is conducive to balancing work and play, If there is such a thing!
Location! Location! Location!
Wellness retreats are being offered in some of the most spectacular locations in the world. You can find high altitude wellness getaways in the Rocky Mountains of the US or Canada, classic European spa escapes like the Tibetan Healing in the Alps, wellness in Baden Baden, Farm To Table and eco-safaris everywhere, even head into the woods for indigenous wellness retreats. The good news is the choice is yours and the only bad news is that you’ve got to choose!
Best Time To Go
Any time is a good time to go on a retreat. The sky and your budget are the limit. But don’t let a smaller budget make you think that you can’t travel and retreat like the best of them. A lot of upscale destinations offer enticing deals during their off and shoulder season. The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise has a menagerie of robust wellness retreats that take the cake for covering all bases in terms of life transformation. You have a choice of mindfulness, meditation and yoga retreats with experts such as
- Tracy Delfs, a passionate yoga & mindfulness instructor and long-time student of world-renowned Zen and mindfulness master Thich Nhat Hanh.
- Dr. Eva Selhub, internationally known medical doctor, author, stress management and resiliency coach.
- Shannon Kaiser, author and life coach, named “Top 100 Women to Watch in Wellness” and “Top 25 most influential wellness writers” by MindBodyGreen.
Yoga, meditation & creative writing retreats are held here by
- Sean Murphy, author, Zen meditation teacher and instructor for creative writing.
- Kim Roberts, yoga instructor, psychotherapist and author.
- Cynthia Morris, acclaimed creativity coach writer, artist, who has mastered the art of staying inspired, productive and access instant creativity.
This is the perfect time and setting in which to silence your monkey mind and tap into your inner voice – and channel it creatively.