To go on a retreat usually conjures up images of remote, sometimes exotic, locations for anywhere from a weekend to a month. When we can’t afford the time away, or the cost, we can still derive some of the benefit by finding ways in our everyday lives to retreat and renew. Here are just a few ideas:
1. Abstain from speaking. Silence leads to inwardness, even in the midst of family life.
2. Fast for a day or three. Fasting reminds us of the bounty of food available to us. It also lets the body rest from the busy-ness of digesting.
3. Spend a day in the garden. Or the container pots. Or a community garden. Anything to get your hands in the earth.
4. Go for a hike. Even an hour of one-on-one time with Mother Nature can reap huge relaxation dividends.
5. Lie in bed reading—all day! Can you say, “Ultra-nourishing?”
6. Do a media fast for a week. Turn off all input—TV, radio, stereo, newspaper, Internet, videos, books—and see what insights “tune in.”
7. Get a massage in your home. Follow that with down-time and the R&R is complete.
8. Take a long, hot bath. Candlelight, bath salts and wine optional.
9. Spend a day doing what you love, not what you must. Paint, poke around the architectural salvage yard, take a book to the park—anything but what’s on your to-do list.
10. Take a nap. These are especially delicious when strategically placed in the middle of a hectic day.