We seek out retreats to escape the hectic nature of our everyday lives, to recharge and reconnect. But retreats also present the opportunity for some learning experiences. Here, I share a couple of self-care rituals I’ve learned to take away and bring back home with me.Read More
by Oui We Contributor Sam Spahr
We have finally passed through the end of January, into month two of the year, however it’s not too late to take advantage of the New Year. In my opinion, it’s always a good time to start a different routine or to jolt “your” new year again (time is arbitrary and man-made my friends!)
Feel like maybe you’ve already hit a rut in 2018 or can’t seem to ditch the stress you wanted to? Then sis, a wellness retreat could be on your next horizon. These rejuvenating getaways have been shapeshifting in recent years - to the point where you can find one to fit almost any aspect of your needs. Whether you’re game for an intense meditative experience or really need some pampering and digital detox, there is a retreat waiting for you. Two nights in the mountains, two weeks in the jungle, even a DIY a worry-free weekend with your ladies, the options are abundant. Dipping your toe into the wellness spring can be a little intimidating but there’s no need to be a yogi or total guru to tap into your self-care.
So what’s right for you?
Who hasn’t uttered “new year, new me” at least once (if even ironically). We instinctively know the best place to start is form the inside out - not just spiritually, but with our food and physical practices.
Sunrise Springs Spa Resort in Santa Fe, New Mexico reads like the most relaxing summer-camp-for-adults to exist. They boast several all-inclusive packages as well as à la carte options to completely customize your time there. Not to mention nearly perfect weather year round means you can be surrounded in the beautiful glow of the southwestern landscape (squeal)!
A unique feature of this Santa Fe paradise is the culinary experience. With so many of us experiencing an enlightenment toward how we nourish our bodies, Sunset Springs boasts there own farm and opportunities to deepen your knowledge about food in every sense - think culinary classes, menu planning, sourcing your food, and social dinners.
Even more, their Sunrise Glow Cleanse package offers a deeply personal detoxifying retreat. With the help of a nutritionist and focused sessions, you’ll be guided toward your total health goals - mind, body, and spirit. You may also find yourself attracted to their art activities, hiking, or meditative spaces, but don’t skip over Puppy Play - yes, it’s what you think it is, excuse me, I’m still swooning…
This is it - me time. I set my space, settle down to meditate, and 45 seconds later I am mentally compiling my next to-do list or wondering if my fan has always been that loud. You too? Stay with me.
Shambhala Mountain Center of Red Feather Lakes, CO was made for people like us. We have the best intentions! I know! Luckily this mountain nestled retreat understands offering weekends workshops like Learn to Mediate or The Art of Being Human and longer immersive experiences for those who so desire. Shambhala seeks to help you look inward and truly supports your internal healing and growth.
They have tapped the healing art of Qi Gong to help their visitors do just this. Qi Gong is gentle movement based meditation (yay! fellow wigglers unite!) It’s rooted in Chinese medicine and allows those who practice to reach a greater sense of self awareness as they connect to the meaning of Qi Gong, “life energy.” A series of coordinated poses, deep breathing, and intentional focus will move you toward true holistic balance.
And sometimes the calendar year shifts and nothing has changed. Be honest, I’ve done it - or more accurately I have done nothing to change my situation. It’s okay. Repeat. It is okay…
Force yourself to slow down. Take yourself out of your environment in every way. Come away to the jungle; you just need some R+R. The Haramara Retreat in Sayulita, Mexico provides the ultimate unplugged experience for anyone looking to completely disconnect from the norm and reconnect with the world. Electricity is found in the restaurant and yoga studios only, and yes cell service is limited, but take one look at the lush jungle around you, and I promise your digital woes will quickly be a thing of the past. Imagine waking up under a thatched roof open-air room with vibrant green views at almost every turn. Once you find the will to leave this dreamy space, you’ll find an spa menu to quench your relaxation needs. The spa is proud to source their products as locally and sustainably as possible using many traditional and botanical techniques from head to toe.
Let’s not forget, Haramara is in Mexico, and what’s Mexico without a gorgeous beach. The resort provides a private beach for its visitors as well as a stunning infinity pool to keep the relaxed vibes a-flowing. And when the time calls for a little adventure, Haramara provides chances to go whale watching, hiking, surfing, and so much more. Just be sure to work in a yoga class at one of their open-air studios before you head on home totally rejuvenated.
Cant getaway at the moment? No need. DIY an amazing Wellness Weekend for you and your gals with out having to check out of town. See my tips here.
Sam Spahr is an artist-educator who gets her kicks sharing the magic of the arts with kids and adults alike. She has a penchant for ancient artworks and helping others find the connections between now and then. When not inside a studio or bookshop, you can find her paddling out somewhere with her hubs and pup. She loves experimenting in the kitchen, but loves eating even more, especially in new cities and cultures.