Updated: Jan 20
(And how it can be a game-changer for your health + happiness!)
Are you considering joining a wellness retreat, but aren’t sure if it’s worth it?
Are you asking yourself,
“Would it be better to just book a vacation to the beach and chill for a week?”
Maybe you’re thinking, “this is the only time away I can take this year...how do I know if I should really spend it on a retreat?”
Maybe you’ve never thought about a retreat before now, but you just are NOT thrilled with the way your life is going right now and you want a change...
I get it...actually, I used to question the power of retreats...at first, it seemed just like a vacation with some added wellness bits like a yoga session or a health smoothie in the morning...didn’t seem worth it to me.
And when I felt at my lowest in life - anxiety attacks, constant stress + sleepless nights, heartbroken + lost - I wasn't sure if a retreat would help me feel connected to life and others who really got me...
I figured I could do all the wellness stuff on my own...
Plus, the idea of spending multiple days with strangers made me skeptical...I wasn’t sure if I would like any of them or get what I was going through...
And having to follow a schedule - what if I didn't like some of what we did? What if it gave me anxiety because I didn't feel prepared? These were all thoughts I had that kept me from a retreat for years.
At that same time in my life, I also used to spend thousands of dollars on therapy, spiritual healing sessions, diet plans, anti-inflammatory medications, anti-anxiety medications, and more to help me feel better without any real clarity at all about what would actually work...
But, I eventually did find myself on a wellness retreat while I was training to become a yoga teacher...I went along with it as a way to learn more about the practice of yoga, but still wasn't sold on "retreating".
And, wow, was I wrong about it being a boujie health vacation and I was DEFINITELY wrong
about it being an anxiety-producing experience.
After going on my first retreat, I immediately realized this should NOT be seen as an optional component of a healthy life, retreat should be a PILLAR of my wellness routine each year...
The dedicated healing spaces, the intentional schedule, the delicious food, and up-close time with my teacher at the time + the retreat leader literally helped me make a HUGE leap in my personal transformation in just 4 days.
What I realized is this:
1. Retreats are Distraction Detoxes (AKA food for your soul).
This makes a retreat totally different than a vacation. You are in a space dedicated to helping you reset, unwind, and step back from the usual habits, patterns, and stressors that can easily still creep in while on vacation.
2. Retreats connect you back to yourself.
While vacations you may be hesitant to do alone, retreats are perfect to do solo. It's actually normal and encouraged. So you can cut out the drama and stress of accounting for others, planning with others, and you can simply show up. In fact, every retreat I’ve ever done as a participant I’ve done solo and it has actually enhanced my experience because I am fully in my own zone. Not to mention, it has connected me with new people who are now life-long friends
3. Finding the RIGHT retreat really matters.
There are some retreats that are essentially an all-inclusive vacation.
You’ll have days jam-packed with activities that aren’t necessarily wellness/mindfulness focused (i’ve seen everything from zip-lining to ATV-ing to wine tasting!).
On those retreats, people will likely drink and stay up late at night, and while you might have fun and meet new friends, you’ve really done no good for your mental, physical, or emotional health in the long-run.
Truly healing retreats, on the other hand, have been proven to improve wellbeing for its participants not only during the trip, but even in follow-up check-ins 6 weeks later and beyond. That means a good retreat is doing its job...it’s meant to set you up for long-term healing in your life.
That's why I carefully craft every single aspect of the retreats I now host for people, because I gained so much from the well-planned retreats I attended years ago...
Check out this picture from my Colorado-based retreat happening this April (2022)!
In a nutshell, find a retreat that speaks to YOU and what you need in your life now and then ask questions to the host to be sure you know exactly what their intentions are and how they will help you find health + healing during + after the retreat.
4. Access to experts.
Unlike the tons of online courses + programs on the market today, retreats give you in-person UP CLOSE access to experts in the wellness field.
Whether its yoga, meditation, Ayurveda, or another form of guidance being offered, your retreat leader is (well, they better be) an expert in their field and you are with them every day for multiple days in a row.
That means you are going to be so immersed in healing and wellness tools that you will amplify the results for yourself during the trip and after....this also highlights how important it is to find the RIGHT retreat for you!
P.S. Check out my TRUST retreat happening in Colorado this April featuring yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda - the best tested + proven healing tools up-close and personal with me!
5. Renewal of your consciousness up-levels your entire life.
One famous spiritual teacher, Jiddu Krishnamurti says this:
"I think it is essential sometimes to go into retreat, to stop everything that you have been doing, to stop your beliefs and experiences completely and look at them anew, not keep on repeating like machines whether you believe or don’t believe. Let fresh air into your minds.”
The reality is, most of us get in our way when it comes to health, wellness, and healing. we block ourselves from getting the success, love, and happiness we crave...
Part of that is because we are so busy living our daily lives that we lose perspective on our existence...our greater purpose and passion...
Retreats help you clear all that noise and resent your conscious awareness so that you can actually live as a vibrational match for what you want in life.
I had a client on my 2021 Colorado retreat say to me,
"I've been in therapy for 5 years trying to figure this part of my life out, and I've had more break-throughs in just this one conversation with you than in all those years..."
That ^ is a big deal. To truly have a break-through about your life in 4 days versus 5 years means there is SOMETHING happening in the retreat space that allows you to tap into that deeper clarity and arrive at real solutions to your life's stumbling blocks.
To learn more about my upcoming retreat in the amazing mountains of Colorado, click here.
(Joyful Journey Hot Springs - the venue of April, 2022 Embrace Your Essence Retreat with Parinaz).
6. Break the unhealthy + unwanted habits.
Sometimes all we need is something external to get our motivation going again.
I’ve heard from so many people in the last 1.5 years (pandemic era) that their motivation in at least one area of life fell off drastically.
It makes sense- life was completely turned upside down for most people and we’ve really had to figure it out as we go.
With so much collective unknown, we’ve been living in collective anxiety which means our quick go-to stress responses (snacking, binging Netflix, not working out, serial swiping, serial scrolling, and maybe even hitting up your toxic ex) have been at a high.
Spending time in a nature-based setting that doesn’t just remove you from the bad habits, but surrounds you by truly soothing, uplifting, and genuinely healthy experiences/settings/foods can be exactly the reset you need to feel back on track in your life.
7.You will meet like-minded people.
I learned by going on retreats that my fear of feeling "forced" to hang out with people I didn’t really like was completely off-base...(again, when you choose the RIGHT retreat).
The reality is, if you sign up for a weekend or week-long experience with an itinerary full of health + healing activities and practices (yoga, meditation, healthy food, reflection time in nature) the other people who are signing up are also into those things.
What surprised me the most is that I actually bonded with people for reasons outside of our mutual interest in improving our health + happiness...
And some of those people are lifelong friends from all over the world!
Are you considering a retreat?
Which of these 7 things that I shared appeal to you most? Share with me in the comments below!
P.S. My TRUST Retreat is happening this April! 4 Days to go from anxious and stressed, to feeling calm, confident and loving life!
Isn’t it time you got back in touch with what makes you happy. And TRUST that everything you need is within you.
Find out more here:
Early Bird Special: Save 15% until 8 Feb!
It’s truly amazing that you can build an international friend group through a retreat, no matter where it’s located.
If you already know you can't make those retreat dates, let's chat privately about other retreats that might be great for you!
I want to help you live happy, calm, and confident!
(meditation hill at Joyful Journey Hot Springs, home of the Embrace Your Essence Retreat this April with Parinaz Shams).