What does a typical day look like? What really happens on your retreat?
I understand these questions. I had the same questions before I went on my first retreat. And there are many different types of retreats out there now. So, as I prepare for the 50th time that I will be teaching the Mindful Leadership for the 21st Century Retreat this November, I thought I would try to answer these questions and, perhaps entice you to take this opportunity to renew and reset.
Before I tell you about the flow of the day, allow me to answer the question ‘what really happens?’ Being on this retreat is a personal experience and a community experience. It is time to connect with yourself in a way that is simply not likely to happen in a chaotic, overly busy, stressed world. It is a time to answer questions (how am I showing up for this one life? how do I want to be in the world? what is important vs what screams the loudest?). And, it is a time to connect with other like-minded professionals interested in transforming the status quo-for themselves and those around them.
A sample day on retreat begins with an early morning meditation as we gather together to check in with our body, mind, and heart. This meditation is a combination of sitting meditation and gentle stretches. This is our opportunity to ‘gentle into the day’.
At breakfast we have time to nourish ourselves through mindful eating and to chat with other amazing leaders from around the country/world. One of the great gifts of this retreat is the ability to be in a community of professionals from many different backgrounds and who are all interested in finding a way to be more focused, clear, creative, and compassionate.
The morning session will include explorations of a new meditation and a new reflection practice, one application (for example: calendar, mindful communication, principles, resiliency, self-care in a chaotic world, leading by inspiration vs expectation), and gentle yoga or a mindful walk in the woods). Lunch is followed by open space for you to choose what serves you best (rest, journal, hike, chat with others, etc).
Mid-afternoon we will gather again to continue our experiences from the morning and then we will break for dinner. After dinner, we may gather around the fireplace for some restorative yoga (no experience needed). All the explorations are done in a variety of ways; one-on-one, small group and large group dialogs, and in silence.
Every day is different-new practices, new applications, and new personal insights. Along the way, we collectively create a safe space to speak about the challenges and rewards of being a busy professional these days, and the ways in which we can begin to bring mindful leadership practices and applications into our lives – at work and at home.
If you still have questions, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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