It’s always a little jarring to get back to the “real world” after a yoga retreat. You’ve just spent an extended time learning about yourself, stretching your mind and your body, and discovering a new sense of peace and tranquility. Coming back to the world of bills and emails can take some readjustment. With the right techniques, you can use your retreat experience to ease yourself back into your home life with new mindfulness instead of resistance.
Reflect on Your Experience
Some people choose to take a journal with them to the yoga retreat. Whether or not you’re one of those people, now is a great time to take out some paper and pen to reflect on your experience. You don’t need a fancy journal for this practice. Even a few sheets of loose paper will do the job just fine. Ask yourself what you enjoyed about the retreat, what you found challenging, and how you grew as a person while you were away. This reflection will be a great starting point for your next few steps.
Set Achievable goals
If you wish, set some goals for small and attainable changes you can make now that you are home to keep that retreat buzz going. For example, eating well, preparing your own fresh lunches, attending 1 extra class a week or going outdoors on the weekend for a walk. Anything that will bring you joy! Connect with any friends you met on retreat and set up a WhatsApp group, for example, to encourage each other.
Carve Out Space for Yourself
One of the things that people enjoy most about yoga retreats is that they can focus on their own bodies and minds for a while. Back at home, you’ll have other things that demand your attention, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t give yourself the time and space to be still. Outside of the yoga retreat, you’ll have to be very intentional about it.
If you have young kids, you might explain that you need some alone time and that they can keep themselves occupied for the 30 minutes that you have a piece of tape on the door (or whatever visual system you choose). The kids will probably resist at first, but keep taking time for yourself, and do it at the same time every day. They’ll eventually get used to the idea. You’re not being selfish by taking some time alone. In fact, by having some quiet time, you’ll be more present in your parenting.
During your quiet time, turn off the phone. This is your time. You can answer the emails later. Right now, you don’t have to be available to anybody.
Continue Your Yoga Practice
Once you’ve established some time for yourself, keep up with the practices that helped you during the retreat. Continue doing yoga, and end your sessions with meditation.
Here is a simple practice you can do at home, when you are short on time,.
Explore techniques that you’ve always wanted to try. Continue journaling if that suits you. You might look through your previous reflection and implement some of the specific things that you enjoyed during your yoga retreat. This way, you can set up your own miniature retreat in your own home every day.
Hydrate, eat well
Coming back from a retreat means you will have cleansed and your digestion and had the chance to rehydrate giving your tissues that nice young supple feeling and your skin that healthy glow. Keep it glowing by committing to staying hydrated. Filling up a special water bottle with a tea, infusion or water will keep you ‘filled up’ throughout your work day. Drink often and refill and your improved digestion will stay with you beyond the retreat.
Eating well is and paying attention to your nutritional needs should carry on after the retreat. Keep a couple of go-to meal options in your mind for those days when you are very busy – visit a healthy restaurant nearby that makes a yummy whole food salad, or a warming vegetable stew . At home, fill the fridge with veggies, fruit and stock up on grains and healthy proteins. You can throw together a salad or curry easily with just a few ingredients if you have a go-to favourite recipe. Indulge in a warm (soy/ rice or nut milk) golden turmeric tea or chai to alleviate stress, warm you up and help curb the craving for a sweet after dinner.
Book Your Next Yoga Retreat
If you really miss that yoga retreat, it’s never too early to book your next one. Azulfit offers yoga retreats for every day of the year. Take a look at some of your options today.