A 10-Step Guide to Making the Most of Your Retreat Experience

Retreats are an investment in time and money. If it’s a yoga retreat, wellness retreat, meditation retreat or any type of self help retreat here are ways to get the most returns on that investment & elevate your retreat experience:

Set an intention for the retreat

Do you want to be more present and connect with new people? To jumpstart your health? To improve your yoga practice? To be more mindful about your eating habits? Do you want a plant medicine journey? Or deep meditation with time for introspection? Are you going to heal from grief or reduce stress? Deep self-care? Or, do you simply want some time away from your usual routine?

Knowing your “why” will help you choose a retreat, and set into fruition your intention.

Choose teachers and facilitators right for you

Choose a retreat primarily based on the offering and who’s leading it, rather than location. A teacher with the right expertise and teaching style for you can level up your practice, empower your healing, and inspire your mindset. It’s important to find someone who has the knowledge and expertise to teach in a way that will inspire and motivate you.

If you don’t know of a teacher leading a retreat, take time to watch and read the facilitator’s content and/or reviews online before booking. You want to trust and feel aligned with who will be guiding you.

Choose a location

After your “why” and the “who,” consider the “where.”

If you want to extend your time before or after the retreat, choose a location that you’d like to visit. A retreat is a holiday after all, and the more beautiful the location it’s in, the more you’ll enjoy yourself.

Some retreat offerings are location-specific and there are many popular retreats in Bali, Costa Rica, Mexico, Spain, Italy, Portugal, India and Thailand. Plant medicine retreats are held in places where that plant medicine is legal, such as South and Central America.

Time zones can also be an important factor in determining where your destination should be. It is important that your body clock adjusts so that jet lag does not affect your experience.

Book your retreat

Check out the retreats on our site or the site of your favorite teacher. Some upcoming retreats are:

Pack right

Comfort and function are priorities when packing for a retreat. Layers are always a good idea, especially if you will be going from a hot environment to an air conditioned room, or a cool place into a sweaty class. Be sure to check the weather forecast of the retreat’s location.

You’ll probably not want to waste mental energy deciding what to wear (especially on a meditation retreat), so choose clothes you are used to wearing together, and simple outfits over complicated ones.

Pack for all the activities offered (ie. yoga clothes, walking shoes, white cermonial clothes, etc). I always bring a swimsuit, even if there’s no suggested swimming.

Many retreats have a final party or photo op, so pack at least one outfit you feel beautiful in.

Prepare your home in anticipation of your return

You are going on retreat to become a better version of you, right? When you come back home & to your regular life, you’ll want your home to reflect your new and improved life.

Set micro-intentions throughout each day

To anchor in your main intention and make every moment more powerful, set intentions for each session of the retreat. For instance, before a yoga class, set an intention to move with your breath.

Journal your experience

Retreats can be healing, introspective, revelatory, and/or transformative. Journalling will make sure you record and remember your insights. Writing your intentions down also empowers them. And after the retreat, if you’ve returned to your old self and old habits, you can refer to your journal to remember your retreat mindset.

Connect with fellow participants

It’s easy to have a clear mind and healthy habits at a retreat, but when you return back to your ordinary life, having a network of your retreat community can offer support and inspiration.

Stay in a retreat state of mind

The retreat will end, but hopefully it will leave you happier, healthier, more inspired, and disciplined. When you return back to your normal life, what practices or lessons from the retreat can you incorporate into your daily life? Maintain these practices as long as you can and bring to mind how you felt on retreat as often as you can. This will anchor and integrate the benefits of the retreat.

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