We retreat so we can advance better.
Retreats are purposeful getaways that allow you to take a step back from your daily routine, help you de-stress, refresh and encourage healing of mind, body, and soul.
Holistic retreats are usually held at a venue surrounded by nature, where you will have the chance to invite stillness into your life, often through meditation or mindfulness. Retreats have many benefits for spiritual, physical and emotional health and can come in various formats i.e. yoga retreat, couples retreat, silent retreat.
Here are 40 reasons why your next holiday should be a retreat.
1 – A retreat will help you to de-stress and relax
When you go on a retreat, you remove yourself from the daily stresses like work, personal relationships, everyday hardships like commuting, family and negative situations. You give yourself a release from your routine, allowing yourself the freedom to de-stress and relax.
2 – A retreat may work out cheaper than a holiday
Because you are not spending money on sightseeing activities or eating expensive meals and drinking pricey alcohol (on a retreat you won’t drink at all), a retreat package often ends up being cheaper than a holiday.
3 – You will reconnect with nature
Retreats usually take place in beautiful natural surroundings, without the noise of the city. You will have the chance to explore, discover and immerse yourself fully in all mother nature has to offer. You will get the chance to appreciate nature in ways you never would have thought.
4 – You will get the chance to eat clean
On a retreat, healthy and nutritional meals are served, usually vegetarian or vegan. You will get the chance to detox by not eating any processed foods. Eating foods with good vibrations such as organic fruits and vegetables will boost your energy and help you shake that sluggish feeling from eating too much sugar and prepared meals.
5 – You can learn new recipes
Many retreats include workshops on nutrition, cooking or juicing so that you can learn the recipes and techniques in order to maintain a more healthy diet when you get home.
6 – You will disconnect from technology
Think you won’t be able to be five minutes away from your phone and checking for messages? You will be surprised at what a digital detox can do for you and how it can benefit your mental clarity as well as help you get a better night’s sleep. Social media and the internet add unnecessary noise to our lives, and once you disconnect from it, you will experience less mental fatigue and pressure to comply with the social media norms.
7 – You can go make-up free
One of the benefits that many retreat guests enjoy is not having to wear make up. The skin, which is the largest organ of the body, has a chance to detox and breathe, and you are encouraged to be your natural, beautiful self, inside and out.
8 – Dry detox
Most retreats are alcohol-free. This is because alcohol has a negative impact on the liver, the organ responsible for detoxifying your body, and can reduce mental clarity. Alcohol is also highly addictive, and many people come to retreats to get help to rid themselves from the claws of alcohol. A dry detox will boost your liver function and you will feel energised as a result.
9 – A retreat will help you heal
A retreat will provide you with tools to help you practice self-care. Self-care is one of the first steps towards healing. Self-care can mean something different for everyone, but it is essentially finding a way to encourage deep, internal nourishment for yourself. Once you start practicing self-care, you will start looking at the situations that hurt you differently and be able to heal from them.
10 – A retreat will help you develop a new outlook on life
Retreats have an element of transformative effect that is difficult to put into words. They invite healing into and will give you a fresh new outlook on life. On a retreat you will be guided by professionals who will help you evaluate your current situation, take a step back and observe it from a different angle.
11 – A retreat will improve mental clarity
All the activities that are available for you to take part in on a retreat, will help you obtain mental clarity. Whether it is the practice of yoga, meditation or shadow work, a retreat will help you to declutter your mind and see your situation more clearly. Even something as simple as a clean eating routine will have your mind feeling brighter.
12 – A retreat will teach you how to live in the now
Instead of dwelling on the past that can make you feel depressed or focussing on the future that can make you feel anxious, a retreat will help you live in the now. You will learn how to be more self-aware and live in the present moment. A retreat will teach you to appreciate how far you have come, but to live and enjoy each and every day.
13 – A retreat helps you to face negative emotions
Retreats encourage you to take a journey of self-discovery. The more you start working through the things that hold you back, the more likely you are to encounter negative emotions. This can be emotions like anger, jealousy or envy that may be keeping you from moving forward. Retreats will teach you how to deal with these emotions when they surface and help you to move on from them.
14 – You will be surrounded by positive energy
A retreat is a holiday where you surround yourself with positive energy. All the teachers on the retreat will be sending out good vibes and coupled with the natural surroundings and healthy meals, there will be no place for negativity.
15 – A retreat can offer professional expertise
Retreats are offered by professionals from various disciplines. They are there to give you professional help in areas that you struggle with. A retreat may have professionals like nutritionists, counselors, psychologists, yoga and meditation teachers, holistic healers, artists and more. They are there to teach you and you will have the opportunity to delve into their knowledge and positive energy.
16 – Learn how to do yoga
Most retreats will include a version of yoga, even if it is not a yoga retreat. This is because yoga helps you to culminate awareness through breathwork and movement. It has amazing physical and spiritual benefits and aims to connect you as a whole.
17 – Learn how to meditate
Meditation is one of the core components of a retreat. If you have never meditated before, a retreat is a great place to learn the basics. You will be guided by a professional teacher through meditation sessions and also have the chance to practice meditation on your own.
18 – Learn how to practice mindfulness
The practice of mindfulness allows you to slow down, notice your surroundings and focus on the now. This can be achieved with the help of meditation and yoga or even by going on a guided mindful walk. The calming environment of a retreat helps you to achieve this, with the guidance of professionals if needed. Mindfulness teaches you to focus on what is important in your life and helps you to remove the irrelevant and toxic aspects from it.
19 – Revitalise and refresh yourself
With all the de-stressing practices, physical activity and healthy eating during a retreat, one of the biggest benefits is feeling revitalised and refreshed. This feeling will go well beyond the physical and will leave you with a refreshed mind and spirit too.
20 – Help guide you to live life with a purpose
During a retreat every day is lived with purpose. Whether it is focussing on your physical health or becoming still within your mind, it sets an achievable goal with conscious intention. This gives you the chance to experience living purposefully and with a sense of self. Once you start applying this to the small things in your life, it can grow bigger and ultimately help you achieve your life goals.
21 – Boost your immune system
A stressful routine, poor sleep and bad eating habits can lower your immune system. When your immune system is down you can be prone to catching colds or allergies. A retreat aims to relieve you of the things that can harm your immune system and gives it a boost instead through de-stressing, and meals packed with nutritious essential vitamins and minerals.
22 – Boost weight loss
A retreat can jump start weight loss. Stress can actually cause you to gain weight. When you start to relax and de-stress during a retreat, you turn off the stress hormones that make you want to eat. Because you may be following a clean eating program, you will also be cutting things like sugar and alcohol that contribute to weight gain.
23 – Help to get rid of bad habits
Once you recognise the bad habits in your life, you will learn how to break them through things like meditation and mindfulness practice. While at the retreat, outside of your normal environment, you will find it easier to resist some of the habits holding you hostage, and put actions in place for how to change your environment when you get home.
24 – Find a spiritual teacher
During a retreat you will have the chance to connect with people who may be a bit further along their spiritual journey than you. This gives you the opportunity to find a spiritual teacher or ‘guru’ that can encourage you along the way and help you when you struggle or feel blocked.
25 – Make new friends
Retreats are great places to make new friends with like-minded people. You connect with each other on a different level, away from social pressures. There’s a good chance you will make some life-long friends here.
26 – Embrace fear
Fear is something personal for everyone. It usually feeds on negative emotions and can stop you from living life to the fullest. During a retreat, you will get the opportunity to face these fears and their origins and turn them around into empowering positive energy.
27 – Commit to being more healthy
Retreats encourage you to continue self-care long after it has finished. You will have the chance to commit yourself to live healthier and more mindfully, especially after you have seen the amazing benefits of doing so during a retreat.
28 – Encourage good habits
Once you have made the commitment to yourself to live a healthy and mindful life, you will be encouraged to create good habits. This can include daily meditation sessions, walks, a creative routine, digital timeout and more.
29 – Experience eco travel
Many retreats focus on living a sustainable life and catering to their guests in a sustainable way. This is a great opportunity to experience eco traveling and learn how you can be more mindful of the earth during your holidays and future journeys.
30 – Experience a new culture
If you decide to do a retreat in a different country, you will get to experience a whole new culture. Even though the message of a retreat will still be universal, places like India or Bali have different outlooks on wellness and it’s a great opportunity to learn and experience new things.
31 – Return to your life with new courage
With all the tools you learn during a retreat, you will feel empowered to face the stressful challenges of your routine life again. You will have a sense of courage that you will be able to do this and make the best out of every situation. The new perspective may also have given you solutions to some of the challenges for when you get home.
32 – Find new inspiration
A retreat helps you to get your mojo back and with your refreshed outlook on life, you will feel inspired again. Retreats also offer new opportunities to find inspiration, like during a nature walk or a yoga or dance session. Who knows, a great new idea for a project, side hustle or startup might just pop into your mind.
33 – Be creative
Retreats offer various creative activities. Even if you think you are not creative or feel that you have had a creative block, a retreat will help you move past that and unleash your inner artist.
34 – Learn gratitude
One of the benefits of going on a retreat is that when you pull back from your life to observe it from a distance, you realise there are so many things you can be grateful for. Through the practice of mindfulness, you will also learn to be grateful. An attitude of gratitude reduces the effects of anxiety and depression.
35 – Long-term health benefits
A retreat helps you to bring things like meditation, healthy eating, and exercise into your life. It gives you the tools to deal with stress and invites calmness into your life. These are all things that benefit your health in the long run.
36 – Healthier than a holiday
On a retreat you will be without the stress that comes with a holiday i.e. organising, commuting, making sure you don’t get lost, etc. You won’t be exposed to bad eating habits or drinking and partying. This by default makes a retreat or a wellness holiday a healthier option.
37 – Sleep better
Insomnia is one of the hazards of living a busy and stressful life. All the things you will do at a retreat will ultimately help you to get better and more restful sleep.
38 – Physical exercise
Retreats often have an element of gentle exercise, such as yoga or walking, or more vigorous activity such as hiking and fitness classes. This is a great way to de-stress and invigorate the body.
39 – Set new goals
Many people find that the clarity they gain while on a retreat leads to them being more clear about what they want to be and do in the future. This leads to them setting new goals which can be set in motion at the retreat itself.
40 – Experience a break through
In addition to the physical, mental and spiritual benefits, many people experience a significant ‘shift’ in their thinking or in how they see the world when they are on a retreat. This is because they are away from their normal environment and able to see things more clearly. This is the magic of retreats.
Contributor: Sheryl Miller, Business Coach, consultant and founder of reboot.global