Now, the hard part. How do you choose which one to go on?
It seems that every yoga teacher is doing a retreat and every hotel, resort, B&B and villa wants to host them.
There are fitness retreats, spiritual retreats, silent retreats, laughing retreats, food retreats, art retreats...They take place all over the world and they all make similar promises…they will help you to relax, recharge, rejuvenate.
There’s no governing body, there’s no recognized rating system, it’s just word of mouth, or a leap of faith. But, the leap is worth taking!
Cut through the clutter with these five guidelines and you’ll find the retreat experience that was meant for you.
1. Wish List It
Before you start digging around and doing research, have a general understanding of what you want. Don’t underestimate the importance of understanding what your soul is looking for. You don’t need to be specific, but have a general idea. This will be your compass as you navigate the research!
Start by asking yourself these five simple questions:
- When do I want to retreat and for how long?
- What is my budget?
- Am I willing to travel? Plane/Train/Car 3 hours, 8 hours?
- How active do I want to be? (Power yoga or restorative yoga? Boot camp style fitness or walks on the beach?)
- How spiritual do I want to be? (Are you looking for a quiet retreat that focuses more on reflection and fasting, or are you looking for a more social experience where there is the opportunity to have wine with new friends?)
2. Ask your network for referrals and recommendations.
Advice from someone you know and trust is the best place to start. Now that you know what you’re looking for, reach out to people in your social network who have been on retreats before. What did they like? What didn’t they like? Ask them to recommend a few places for you to research!
You probably already know that if you type in ‘yoga retreat’, your browser will explode.
So, search wisely. Use key words that you’ve established from your retreat wish list. ‘Vinyasa Flow Yoga Retreat and Cuba and November’ for example.
In addition to google searches, reach out to established online Retreat Companies that have retreats listed by category, date, price etc.
4. Review testimonials and connect with the retreat leaders
Don’t be shy! Reach out to the retreat leaders and ask if you can connect with them.
Make a list of questions, and more importantly, get a feeling for their vibe and personality.
Ask yourself if there is a fit! You can also ask to connect with people who have given testimonials. Nothing beats your gut instinct on this one!
5. Book, sit back and relax.
Once you’ve made your decision, book it and let it go. Feel confident that you’re headed in the right direction. That promise to ‘relax, recharge, rejuvenate’ is yours for the taking.