Indeed it was a treat to be with Kara Jones of the Creative Grief Studio and other grief support professionals in Pittsburgh, PA on April 23rd. What a great day of delving into our self-care, looking for ways to carry this forward, and finding intersections with our self-care and professional lives.
It has been a long time since I’ve been on a retreat and this one worked for me because of its proximity to home and family. My only regret was how brief it was. (Kara mentioned plans for a longer duration retreat for next year!) If you have the opportunity to go on a retreat, I highly recommend that you go for as long as your budget and schedule will allow. In my experience, it’s rare to get to the end of a retreat (even 7 day ones that I’ve attended) and think, “Gee, I wish that had ended 2 days ago.”
Kara was very skillful in her guided visualizations, bringing the group together for sharing and support, and helping us find the pieces in our insights that we’d like to carry forward. This is really an essential part of a successful retreat: “What are you going to bring forward from this experience into your day-to-day life?”
The first time I went to Kripalu for a yoga and meditation retreat I was filled with the positive vibes of the experience, but the re-entry into my normal life quickly erased it. I was left swooning with the after-effects and unable to grasp onto what I had learned and how I would apply it in my “real” life. (Other experiences at Kripalu have been different and more focused on how you bring the retreat experience and insights forward.)
A few things that I plan to bring forward from this reTREAT are to find places where I’m seen and heard – where each day I can be myself and tend to myself. This tending to ourselves is such a vital aspect of life. This is one of the things I hope I can do for myself and others (and I hope you can too). Let’s give ourselves and others accolades for self-care. We spend a lot of time patting each other on the back for taking care of others – and this is a wonderful thing — but let’s also pat them on the back for taking care of themselves. Because if they don’t take care of themselves, how will they take care of others?
Wishing for you many wonderful retreat experiences with action-oriented insights for your daily life.