A retreat is a gift you give yourself, a way to step back from the activities, obligations and To Do lists of your everyday life. It is a time to immerse yourself in silence so you can tune in to your inner wisdom. It is a space for reflection, writing, meditating, caring for your soul. It is your time to reconnect with your spirit, to be present in the moment, to rest and ponder what is really important to you.
I attended a retreat in March, 2012, at the Franciscan Spirituality Center in La Crosse, Wisconsin and here are a few of the gems I took with me. Silence slows me down, centers and grounds me, helps me to be instead of do. Spending time in silence allows me the space to look inward instead of outward. Silence reconnects me to my dreams, visions, creativity, intuition and imagination. It gives me room to breathe, to pause, to focus on what really matters to me.
What about you? When was the last time you sat in silence? How can you create space in your life for a regular practice of silence? What gifts are available to you in silence? What do you hear in silence? Who are you without your voice? What is it to live in the questions?
I invite you to explore the transformative power of silence at my February Retreat at the Carondelet Center in St Paul. Details are on my website.
12 thoughts on “What is a Retreat?”
Too much silence brings out the obsessive thoughts. I need music or some other distraction to keep me able to get out of thought loops.
Thanks for your comments Scott. Happy New Year to you!
Retreats and everything that involves to spoil ourselves a bit… <3 We deserve it so much and do it so little times!
Thank you for your comments Lily. We deserve to spoil ourselves. If you are in the Twin Cities area, I hope you can join us at my February Retreat.
Ah, even just the word “retreat” calms me down! I love the restful time you gave to yourself. I need to do that more often. Right now, I’m thinking I need a space in my home where I could literally draw the curtains around me and relax.
What a great idea Naomi! You can definitely create a sacred space in your home so you can retreat on a regular basis. It’s a gift we give to ourselves and we so need it.
I attended a three week silent retreat about 5 years ago. It was life changing in so many ways. It wasn’t all easy, in fact at times it was difficult. When my mind compensated for the silence by getting twice as loud, I thought I was losing the plot. In fact it was the biggest learning of all. I wasn’t losing the plot at all, I was seeing my mind for what it really was. A lesson so strong that it has stayed.
These days when I think of the word retreat, I feel more drawn to a relaxing silent time, being creative and going for walks. I must treat myself to one of those one day soon 🙂
Thanks for your comments Kama. I don’t think I could do even a one week silent retreat much less three weeks. Good for you! I hope you treat yourself to a solo retreat soon:)
Yeah, this sounds fun. My husband and I are going skiing that weekend but your artist’s retreats sound fun too. It would be fun to meet you! Do you live near the Twin Cities?
Thanks for your comments Amy. Sorry you won’t be able to join us at the February retreat. I plan to do four more this year so check my website in a month or so for updates. Yes, I live in St Paul and would enjoy getting together for coffee. Message me with a couple of dates.
Retreats are so restorative Kelly. i hope you give yourself the gift of a retreat:)
You know, I’ve never been to a retreat. However, both you and some other members of the Inspired Blogging Group have really peaked my interest. Now that my two are away I have more time and really should consider one I think. Thank you, once again, for the nudge.