Imagine a whole week just for yourself… To relax. To recharge. To get clear and present with you and your body. To immerse yourself in new tools, perspectives, and activities to create a greater future. Now imagine that all of this takes place in a beautiful, idyllic paradise all designed to care for you. Now sense the ease and clarity that this would contribute to your future. Feel the space and peace and what creative ideas and inspirations would be available to you.
This is the transformative power of a healing retreat.
Unlike a simple vacation, which can be restorative and relaxing, a retreat offers all of these important benefits as well as a chance to heal past wounds, learn new skills and tools, and make lasting positive life changes.
As a licensed clinical psychologist, addiction and trauma specialist and empowerment coach, I am a big fan of retreats and often go on them myself. I have seen clients over the years who have used these journeys to profoundly transform their lives and open the door to different possibilities. I have seen these folks go off to retreats stressed, distracted, and hungry for change and return rested, relaxed, and far more importantly, hopeful and inspired to create a greater future.
What is it about retreats that can facilitate these possibilities?
A Break in Routine
It’s a funny saying and quite true that doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity. One of the benefits of a retreat is creating a break in your everyday routine. Life gets boring when we do the same things the same ways with the same people over and over again. When on retreat we embark on an entirely new adventure, in a new place with new people. This novelty alone can be beautiful and amazing and do wonders for one’s body and soul.
Gaining New Perspectives
One important component of a great retreat is that it gives participants a chance to hone valuable life skills, get in touch with their inner wisdom, and embrace more of themselves. People on these retreats reap benefits that extend far beyond the retreat time itself. They can actually use the practices, information and tools from the retreat going forward in their daily lives, work and relationships.
Retreats are often organized and led by authors, speakers, and experts who are making themselves available for this special time in a beautiful and healing destination. It’s a unique opportunity to spend time with great leaders and teachers in a truly relaxed setting. Many healers, speakers, and writers who lead retreats love to work with a small group of highly motivated participants. My experiences of facilitating people on retreats has incredibly fun and rewarding because the participants are inspired, relaxed and grateful. And that nurtures and feeds my own growth as well.
The Power of Community
One of the amazing benefits of retreats is that you get to have the time and space for you, while at the same time you can connect with new and like-minded individuals with similar goals and interests. I have seen this in retreats where people are able to create exponentially more healing and change together as a group than they can in individual sessions or even small group therapy. There is an incredible power in working together to create greater, supporting one another and moving forward. It’s also really fun to have people to spend time with at breaks and outside of the working sessions of the retreat having adventures and exploring new terrain together.
Healing with Joy
Let’s face it, it’s really fun to travel and be in beautiful places around the world. This has been one of my great dreams in life fulfilled and I’m so fortunate and grateful to have been able to have these opportunities.
There is such an immense lightness and sense of expansion when we do this. This happiness also reminds us of who we really are, why we are here, and provides some extra incentive to move forward. Many people find that this immersion in being well and happy provides motivation to make positive changes.
Healing retreats can be a powerful and bold step toward living your best life and creating a greater future. One company that puts on amazing retreats is Soul Bliss Journeys: https://www.soulblissjourneys.com/
I am also going to be leading a retreat with my good friend, co-author and frequent collaborator, TJ Woodward of Conscious Recovery. We have created several local retreats in the past and seen incredible results and we are so excited for our upcoming event in Bali, Indonesia.
You can find out more about that here: https://www.firebird-healing.com/conscious-recovery-retreat
You can also find out more about classes and sessions with me here: https://adrianapopescu.org
Dr. Adriana Popescu is a clinical psychologist, addiction and trauma specialist, author, speaker and empowerment coach who is based in San Francisco, California and practices worldwide. She is the founder and CEO of Firebird Healing, an innovative holistic trauma healing center in Northern California. For free stress-relief resources please visit: https://www.firebird-healing.com/feeling-a-bit-stressed