Reflections of a Women's Retreat

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March 29, 2018

I don't know how to put into words the difference my first women's retreat has made to me....but I will try my best! I really wanted to share my experience with my readers...especially as the sharing I did in the company of these beautiful women for five days was such a balm for my full head and heart. I'm hoping that I can bring a little of that Women's circle feeling into your heart today by reading this jumble of words....

Firstly, the retreat was called Spirit of Woman. It is on the sunshine coast in Qld in a gorgeous little town in the Noosa Hinterland called Kin Kin and I went along as an anonymous participant (as in I was not sponsored to be there and nor do they know I am even blogging about it!)

 

 image credit to High Spirits website

My lovely Brisbane based masseuse encouraged me to come along as she is one of the facilitators. To keep the privacy of what we actually did on the retreat, I will not be outlining the specific activities and tasks we did. Because I had no idea what I would be doing once I was there, it made the retreat a lot more effective for me. It was brilliant for someone like me who usually prefers to be in control and likes to know everything that is going to happen. I just had to surrender to it all and had no time to overthink anything. Perfect. 

What I can tell you -

It ran for 5 days (Wed - Sun)

It was women only

It was in beautiful surrounds

The food was all extremely delicious, nourishing and vegetarian

No coffee, alcohol or sugar!

Lots of gentle exercise, movement, massage, meditation, sauna and pool swims  

Lots of reflection and work on the self

I didn't have any phone reception so I handed it over (encouraged but not compulsory!) and no calls, texts, e-mails or time checking for 5 days was complete bliss! There was a landline number in the office that my husband could call if there was an emergency so I had that peace of mind. 

 

 image credit to High Spirits website

I can also tell you I hadn't felt so held, loved and safe since I was a child. There was an immediate feeling of sisterhood and I was one of 24 women who spanned the ages of early 20's to late 60's. I have many close girlfriends in my life as well as being very close to my own birth sister but I guess I have never experienced a time where I allowed myself to be completely vulnerable and open to a whole bunch of different women for an extended period of time and actually work on myself while doing this. It was intense. It was an immediate sisterhood.

I saw myself in every single woman there and it felt like we were all mirrors being held up for each other. When we allow our true selves to be shown and just laid out on a table like that (sometimes literally when we were on the massage table! lol!) we are able to see so clearly what unites us all.

A yearning for acceptance.

A huge heart that just wants to be loved back as much as we can love.

Self doubt.

Insecurities.

Pain from losing loved ones

Pain from past or present relationships.

Guilt from our current or past behaviours and experiences.

Strength.

Passion.

Loneliness.

Anger.

An ability to be there for each other no matter what.

A thirst for more awareness and self improvement.

I absolutely LOVED that every woman there had been through their own river of shit but were still open to what was to come next. They were all so beautiful in the fact that they had been broken by something or someone in their life and had built themselves back up again. The older ones gave me so much wisdom and the younger ones gave me so much hope for the future. 

 

 

I saw everyone's faces change over that 5 days and even their bodies in the way they started to hold them self up. I'm sure I started to look different too. 

And the tears, oh the tears! So much letting go and realisations of how things CAN be different. The most important focus was - in order to be happier, more relaxed and more content with our relationships, we need to love ourselves more. Yep, that old chestnut. But it's so true and we need as many reminders as we can get.

I left there feeling like a new woman with new tools and strategies to deal with my personal journey and I will be forever grateful that I allowed myself to be open to this whole process.

My new mantra is "I will focus on ONE thing at a time" This will help me create more slowness in my busy life as I'm really sick of taking myself out of the moment by checking my phone all the time...and eating in front of the tv at night! So yep, one focus at a time Alisha!

I also feel excited about choosing more fun. Letting go of control more...and just making myself the priority above all else which can really get lost in motherhood and running a business. Me first, then others. 

I think what really rang true for me is that we only have this one life and we need to make the most out of it no matter how hard it can get. I feel so fortunate that I live in a country that has such freedom and in a time that exploring what makes me tick is even a thing! I could be slaving in fields all day, living in a country at war, homeless...or even live in a time where the stigma of being female and leaving my house, husband and kids to explore who I am would have branded me as a witch or an unfit mother.

Life is too short to not create ourselves some fun, give ourselves a break and most importantly, not to forget the one big thing. That we need to love ourselves enough to give ourselves everything we deserve.

Spoiler alert - We deserve so much.

We deserve to be heard.

We deserve to be loved.

We deserve to have fun.

We deserve what lights us up from the inside.

 

 image credit to High Spirits website

I'm extremely excited about the future of women. There has been so much suppression of the female race and it all seems to be turning around lately. Can you feel or notice this? I think it's time we all joined in and stopped suppressing who we are, the love we have and what we can contribute to not only our friends and family but also to the world just by being who we really are.

Not only is it a gift to ourselves but it's a gift for everyone else too.

Not being true to who we really are is just a massive waste of time and energy and can land us exactly where we do not want to be. 

Women rock. You rock and I love you for who you are underneath all your layers because that's where you shine. So take a layer off as often as you can until you are raw, open and vulnerable too because amazing things happen from that place and as scary and uncomfortable as it is, it's oh so worth it.

Here are some links you might find useful -

Kin Kin High Spirits Retreat - Spirit Of Woman Retreat

My Kahuna masseuse/Art Therapist if you're in Brisbane - Soul Massage

Any books or Ted Talks by Brene Brown

Any books or courses by Marianne Williamson

Flower Essence blends that can help you on your personal journey especially Self Love, Let it Go, Slow Down, Grounding, Courage and Truth blends - find them here

I would love to hear about any women's retreats or women's circles you are currently involved in or have been a part of?

Yours in Health,

Alisha x

 

 


1 Response

Kirstie Patmore
Kirstie Patmore

March 30, 2018

I was fortunate enough to experience the same retreat with you Alisha. Your words are perfect and a beautiful reminder of 5 days I will never forget xx

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