A couple of weeks ago my mom and I hosted our first retreat together combining yoga, guided meditation, and tapping. 11 women most of whom didn’t know each other, spent a day in quiet reflection, communion, and releasing some of the burdens each carried on her shoulders. The retreat was called Reset and Recharge and our goal was to help the participants add to their stress relief toolkit. I know from recent experience that stress has serious consequences to one’s mental and physical health and there is plenty of research out there indicating that chronic stress can result in severe, long-term health problems. Each woman set an intention at the beginning of the retreat, something they hoped to get from the day, something they’d focus on throughout. For some that was to be more open to opportunities, for some it was to spend this time doing something just for her. I think we underestimate the amount of time we each need to spend taking care of ourselves. How easy is it to put everyone else’s needs before your own? How easy is it to lose sight of what you really want in life because you’re so busy making sure that the people around you have what they need? This retreat started a line of inquiry in my mind that I’m feverishly digesting – what does it mean to show up for yourself? And as an offshoot, what does it mean to show up for others? How do we accept and forgive our shortcomings while pushing ourselves to be better and bolder and brighter? These are things that come up for me as I ponder this work that my mom and I have started doing together.
Working with my mom was a pretty awesome experience! It’s been a long time since I’ve seen her in this capacity, as a leader helping others to bring more joy and, as she would say, expansiveness into their lives. She radiated energy and passion for the work. Because she’s done retreats like this many times before, it was really helpful for me to have her as a mentor in the process as well. One of my favorite things about doing the retreat with my mom was that there were times when each one of us was able to be a participant. When she led everyone through a group tapping session, I was right there with them, tapping away the things that came up for me. I even had my very own epiphany (not for public consumption). While I was teaching yoga, my mom participated just like everyone else. It still ended up being a pretty exhausting day – we both woke up well before dawn from excitement – but there was also an aspect for each of us of resetting and recharging.
We have figured out a few things that we’ll do differently the next time around, but overall, the retreat was a success and participants left feeling like they’d gained something. We took some pre and post surveys and have started collecting data that we’ll share at some point. Early results indicate that spending the day in self-care reduced our participants’ immediate experience of stress significantly. That’s what we set out to do and we achieved that end.
We’re working on details (like finding a location) for our next retreat which will be in August. Stay tuned for more information!