Build Your At-Home Yoga Retreat October 17, 2017 10:43
It's time for a yoga "staycation."
Feeling a little off-balance? Ashleigh Sergeant, Head of Yoga Content for Gaia.com and Certified Anusara Yoga Instructor has some thoughts.
According to Sergeant, yoga is more than just an "on-the-mat" experience.
"The masters who brought yoga to the masses meant for the practice to enrich your entire life with mindfulness and conscious connection, not hurried schleps to a sweaty studio," says Sergeant. "Yoga is, at its essence, the practice of self-inquiry as a pathway toward self-realization."
Find yourself through yoga and become more in-tune with your body.
"When your practice feels like it is missing something, it is often the rest of yoga you have been leaving out, whether that’s the deeper philosophical practices of yoga or the general idea of 'yoking' (uniting) with something more," she adds. "A purposeful 'staycation' in the form of a DIY yoga retreat nurtures your whole health and wellbeing with loving self-inquiry and care, because you get to design it with yourself in mind."
That being said, it's time to build your at-home yoga retreat.
"When you step beyond the studio, you allow yourself the time and space to truly be with and learn about yourself so you may become the most authentic and empowered version of you," Sergeant adds. "A yoga retreat offers a holistic experience, a total shift from the demands of daily life into a sacred space in which you set aside the cares of a busy daily life and gift yourself a deeper yoga practice, a mindful living, healthy eating, self-care, and self-study."
Don't just practice yoga, but also integrate it into your daily life.
"The idea appeals to practitioners of all levels and styles for reasons of comfort, lack of competition, and the sweetness of privately deepening your practice," she says. "Plus it takes the money out of the equation! It’s about desire and discipline, effort and acceptance. This is an opportunity to connect with yourself and ritualize new ways to cleanse, nourish, and rejuvenate as part of your yoga practice. Diving into a deep and disciplined practice may feel like a bit much for many modern practitioners, so these little tips were designed to help you step into ritualized self-care and self-love, practically, for a transformative yoga retreat in your new at-home sanctuary."
Create a schedule for yourself that infuses a ritual into each step. For example, wake up and start your day with a glass of warm lemon water, meditate, journal, do a morning yoga practice, eat a healthy meal, make time for reading, or take a walk. Plan time for yourself to take a bath, use aromatherapy, or even get a massage.
Be gentle, and if you need to skip something in order to nurture yourself as this practice opens you up, listen to your needs. Remember, yoga isn’t about touching your toes, it’s about what you learn on the journey to the ground.
Yoga, be it asana or meditation, releases us from our stories to live free and loving lives. Bringing your attention to yourself can, and likely will, bring up new thoughts on old patterns of fear, violence of thought or action, diseased habits that no longer serve you, and so on.
When you feel this edginess arise, sit in the discomfort without judgement. Love who you were, are, and who you hope to be. Write, speak, sing, or sit with these new discoveries in silence. This is the true power of retreat.