RETREAT CULTURE: It’s time to believe in ourselves again!

It’s hard to believe in anything anymore. We have fake news. A lot of our media is PR. Corruption seems to exist at the deepest core of our culture (and probably always has) including sport, our food industry, politics and even the healthcare system.

There's never been a more important time to believe in ourselves.

In my opinion, a wellness retreat provides us with an opportunity to do this. A retreat gives us the time and space so we can reflect and hear our inner voice. They provide a break from toxic foods and chemicals so we feel clean and clear. They inspire us to move so we feel stronger. Good health equals a balanced mind  - and it feels more crucial than ever to keep ourselves sane and strong in this world.

But with the average price of a seven-day retreat valued at around two to five thousand dollars, retreats are not always affordable.

Or are they?

The truth is as we age, the cost of our healthcare is increasing as is the cost of supplements, pain management therapies, and medications. In the US alone, for example, the cost of healthcare per person averages around USD $10,000 per person per year. In countries including Australia, Germany, Japan and Canada, it’s around $5,000 and less for countries such as Mexico, Chile, and Israel.

A retreat isn’t cheap but neither is going in an out of hospitals or taking medications either.

If retreats truly deliver what they promise, then why not invest in ourselves a little more? I’ve done the math and the outlook actually looks pretty healthy.

One strategy to consider is to set up a ‘Retreat Fund’ in your bank account and organize an automatic saving of so many dollars a week that will cover the cost of your annual retreat.

Another strategy is that every time you are tempted to buy a pair of shoes or something that you don’t really need, put that amount in your 'retreat fund'. If you are anything like me, you'll have a healthy retreat fund in no time.

So how to select the wellness destination for you?

Due to the nature of my work, I’ve been fortunate to experience several high-calibre retreats. And each retreat has bestowed incredible insight about myself and provided enormous motivation to help me evolve my mind and body. From yoga to hiking, detox and Ayurveda Panchakarma, there are so many great choices.

Yet while it may sound exotic to flit from one destination to the other, there’s something to be said for staying with one yoga teacher or returning to the same destination as a point of reference. Like the good old days when we stayed faithful to the local family doctor, checking into the same retreat gives us the opportunity to measure end track our progress.

The good news is that the benefits of wellness retreats are now being proved by science (do we really need evidence that a wellness retreat benefits our health I hear you say). However, the recent study by Australia’s RMIT University measured the real benefits of a retreat and found zero pesticides in the retreat guests after the seven days. The study also showed lower blood pressure and improvements in weight loss and better sleep – exciting stuff!

So that’s my take. We don’t need any more new clothes, fine dining experiences, and luxury goods to make us feel good. It's time to invest more into our inner wealth. Close your ears to all the noise around you. Most of it is actually ‘fake news’. Listen to your inner voice. By putting yourself first, you'll have more energy to help others.

P.S. You can read more about RMIT wellness retreat study here - https://www.globalwellnessinstitute.org/world-retreat-study

 

 

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