One of life’s most difficult challenges is dealing with grief, the feeling of sadness over the loss of someone or something significant. Although grief is normal, the pain can be overwhelming, and the sorrow so profound that it defies description. You wonder if you can ever heal yourself.[Read more…] about Coming to Terms with Grief: How to Heal Yourself
If you’ve been working too hard, aiming for unrealistic goals and driving yourself to the ground, you’re a prime candidate for burnout.
Burnout isn’t about having a bad day at work, or even a bad week. It’s more pernicious, draining your energy and making you feel an exhaustion that isn’t relieved by rest.[Read more…] about The Signs of Burnout and How to Recover from It
The next time you’re planning to go on a vacation, why not take a spiritual retreat? Skip the crowd that flock to the beaches and bars and escape from the noise and clutter of your everyday life. Seek a haven where you can reclaim serenity and inner peace surrounded by silence and nature.
Spiritual retreats do not have to be faith-based. Although a lot of them are, secular or non-faith based retreats are also offered in many retreat centers where people from around the world go to. The most popular places for these centers are India, the Himalayas and Thailand. But you can find one nearer to home, in the US and Europe.
What is a spiritual retreat?
The hallmarks of a spiritual retreat are silence, stillness and detachment from the material world. You willingly go off the grid and re-center your thoughts inward to find the right path to fulfillment.
It’s time spent in contemplation in a retreat facility in a quiet setting, away from the babble and chaos that have become an inherent part of modern living. It can be a monastery or a faraway place with nature and a restful environment as your background.
A guru or mentor will guide you through your spiritual journey. You will have meditations and quiet contemplation done in solitude or with a group. Once you detach yourself from the world, you re-connect with your inner self and gain a sense of peace and calmness.
“In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion.” – Albert Camus
When you find a deeper meaning to your life, you’ll have renewed energy to tackle the challenges ahead of you. A spiritual retreat gives you a keen awareness of your surroundings and the people around you. By continuing the meditation, yoga and prayer practices you learned during the retreat, you will, without conscious effort, develop gratitude, compassion, empathy and kindness towards others.
Even without a budget for the facilities of a retreat center, you can do a spiritual retreat in your home. Create a space for it and allot a quiet time to eliminate distractions. There are videos on YouTube that can guide you through breathing, centering and meditating. Stick to a video that’s right for you and copy it to a disc to play offline. It’s easy to do by following the instructions here.
For those who ask, “What’s in it for me?”, a spiritual retreat gives intangible benefits that are essential to your wellbeing. Inner peace, tranquility of the soul, and the kindness and generosity to others you have developed may not be measurable in concrete units but the positive effects they bring are priceless.
You improve your relationships with other people.
A spiritual retreat is a time for introspection. In the process of examining your own thoughts and feelings, you become aware of your own shortcomings. This awareness evokes humility and a nonjudgmental outlook, raising your tolerance and compassion for others. Eventually, your noncritical approach will pave the way for an enhanced interpersonal relationship with coworkers, friends and family.
You find yourself.
Making a living and taking care of family can overwhelm you. It’s a toxic environment that will take its toll on your physical and mental wellbeing. The demands of career and home can make you feel lost and confused about your own goals.
Go on a spiritual journey and reflect on your life’s perspectives. You may be facing challenges of broken relationships, addictions, or grave illnesses. Spiritual retreats include sessions of meditation and yoga, readings, exercise and a simple diet. A combination of these practices will help you in your personal growth and foster forgiveness, the will to overcome difficulties and acceptance of the inevitable.
You develop a positive outlook.
Faced with a materialistic world, tragic happenings and scandalous news, you become cynical and suspicious of people’s motives. You lose your faith in humanity and the goodness in people. This cynicism comes out in your behavior and can destroy you and your relationships. By retreating from your daily life, you replenish your soul with charity and renew your faith in humankind. You are filled with renewed energy and vigor, ready to go back to the real world with a changed outlook.
You meet like-minded people.
Retreats are one way of getting acquainted with kindred spirits. Having gone through similar spiritual experiences, you can act as each other’s support group and share your experiences, viewpoints and philosophies. Finding people that understand you and vice versa strengthens your newfound resolve and encourages you to become a better person overall.
With the world getting smaller through technology, we are bombarded with upsetting news that challenge our sense of safety and comfort. Spiritual retreats have always been there and now more than ever, they are necessary and relevant in this modern world.
It’s never easy saying a final goodbye to someone we dearly love but did you know that a funeral can aid the healing process? People gather to mourn the loss of a loved one together, but that’s not to say that a funeral can’t be turned into a joyous occasion.
There’s plenty of advice online when it comes to planning a funeral. Plus, in addition to that, rather than making the situation any harder than it needs to be, here are a few ways that you can turn a funeral into a celebration of life.[Read more…] about Turning a Funeral Into a Celebration of Life
With 2019 upon us, many of us will begin to make our New Year’s resolutions along with a strategic plan to help keep them on track
We need to remember that the basis of a New Year resolution is to better yourself from the year before, and the best way to accomplish that is to show yourself love throughout all areas of your life, not just the areas that need taming![Read more…] about Dos and Don’ts: Self-Love in 2019
There is a series on Netflix now called Love, that is a Jude Apatow romantic comedy about a socially awkward man in his 30s trying to date a smart, successful, and beautiful woman in her 30s, who also happens to be a recovering sex and alcohol addict. I’ll admit that some parts of this show are a bit offensive, crude, raunchy and do show explicit sexual and drug activity. So, I am not sure I would recommend this show to everyone.
However, beneath the raunchy sex jokes and drug activity is a true love story about two incredibly flawed but decent human beings trying to stay open to the possibility of a loving and healthy relationship…even though one is a recovering sex and drug addict and her boyfriend has problems with codependency. This program actually shows us the importance of using self-care to overcome issues with codependency. [Read more…] about Using Self-Care to Overcome Codependency