Recipe for a Mini Retreat
Can you remember the last time you did something for yourself?
Do you ever find yourself wondering "how did I end up here?" You look back at the zigs and zags of your life and wonder should I have stepped left when I stepped right? Should I have skipped a few steps (partners, jobs, ideas) entirely? Out of necessity we may find ourselves doing things we didn't plan. Or even losing sight of our hopes and dreams. That's reality.
But right this moment, we've been given a gift. A gift for a "do-over". An opportunity to create a "new normal." What will yours look like?
Whatever you've done in the past to get you here, it doesn't matter, because you're here now.
Perhaps you've been working in a career that didn't suit you. Or in a relationship (with a friend, partner or even co-worker) that was sucking the life out of you. If I've learned anything in my life, "It's never too late... to turn back, start over, press the reset button." And never say never.
I never thought I'd be able to do something I love and make a career out of it. Yet here I am! 15 years after having a kernel of an idea for a yoga retreat that really was a treat (wine, chocolate, coffee, laughter - all of the important things!), I'm living my dream. Meeting inspiring and amazing women. Knowing that I'm not alone in my struggles has encouraged me to keep going when things get tough.
I've spent my life changing directions. At times it has been challenging, but it has gotten me to where I am today and for that I am grateful.
It may be easy to talk about change as a concept somewhere in the future. What's harder is coming up with a plan and making steps toward a change TODAY.
Maybe the change you need is starting over. Take your dream and make it a reality. Whether it's a new career direction, going back or starting school, starting a hobby or activity that interests you.
Or maybe the change you need is less of a beginning and more of an ending. Walking away from the job that drains you. Letting go of the friends who can't seem to stop tearing you down. Moving on from a relationship that is toxic.
Take stock of where you are in life. Finances, time commitments, friends who support you, your career and where it's taking you. Take a good look at what may be holding you back from achieving your dreams. Then adjust or eliminate altogether as needed,
Let go of negative self-talk and any other behaviors that keep you stuck. Schedule an appointment with a professional counselor. If that's not feasible, choose a good friend who can give you perspective on your current state of thinking. Journal to find introspection. Submerse yourself in the healing power of meditation, yoga, nature.
Make a one year, five year and ten year plan. Where do you see yourself? Make a reality based plan and another "if I had all of the time and money in the world this is what I'd do" plan. Take action steps to get moving on one or both of your plans. Be willing to edit or modify your plans and dreams, but unwilling to give up.
Take baby steps. Don't plan a total life revamp for the next month. As with New Year's resolutions, biting off too much at once is a recipe for failure. Most failures are opportunities for learning, so if you end up there, let it be your stepping stone to something else.
Get out of your comfort zone. As many of my guests know, I vow to live out of my comfort zone Every Single Day. It gets uncomfortable! I've discovered I am now able to embrace discomfort, mostly. Getting out of your comfort zone can be as easy as taking a different way to work or as challenging as going somewhere by yourself - movie, dinner, across the country.
Get rid of distractions. How many of us instead of feeling our feelings or taking stock of our life, constantly look for distractions, because we simply don't want to deal with it. Put down the phone, the glass of wine, the chocolate cake, the fitness program. Whatever in life is taking up large chunks of your time and preventing you from living your dream has got to go.
Meditate on the changes you want to make and the things you want to release. Meditation is proven to be renewing to the body and mind. You can rewire your brain. I recommend these meditation apps to go further in your meditation practice: Bhuddify, Omvana and Headspace. Once you make a commitment to a meditation practice, you'll see change. Meditation can be five minutes a day, your yoga practice or a meditative walk. It will change your perspective.
Begin today. What do you have to lose?