I try ( note I said "try" ) and have one day a week that I completely unplug - no phone, no television, no computer. At heart I am a complete recluse, introvert - while still loving to connect and keep up to date with technology.
Yes, I am nothing if not a contradiction in terms.
I have been reading Jennifer Louden's book "The Woman's Retreat Book - A Guide to Restoring, Rediscovering,and Reawakening Your True Self - in a moment, an hour, a day or a weekend" and I am quietly planning my escape.
Not that I have anything to escape from. My life is fairly idyllic already: I live on three acres, with numerous fruit trees, patches of native bush, a small pond, free range chickens and various other wildlife. I work from home, writing blogs and working on books and various other projects at my own speed. I have a husband that adores me as I adore him ( minus the odd disagreement - we are, after all, human).
In fact, my place is the kind of place that Jennifer talks about woman retreating to so why am I plotting my escape?
Being a mother, a wife, a partner, a friend means that we naturally, give of ourselves to those that ask something of us. That we tune into the needs of others without stopping to think "what is it that I want? What feeds me?"
So I am planning my escape - and by that I mean I am staying right where I am but incorporating retreat activities into my day - a mini retreat if you will. I am planning on being more mindful for one whole day, from the minute I wake up until the minute I go to bed. I will unplug completely for one whole day.
I will not distract myself with smartphones, facebook updates, emails or any of the other daily distractions we use to stop ourselves from being present to ourselves.
You might be asking yourself "So what are you going to do?"
And that is the thing isn't it? We get so busy do -ing that be-ing seems wrong somehow, like we are wasting our time. Do you remember when you were a kid watching the clouds drift across the sky? Or looking out the window for hours just dreaming? We need to find ( and give ourselves permission) to just be.
No agenda, no rush to get the next thing done, just sitting enjoying the quiet and listening to your own thoughts.
What will I actually be doing on my mini retreat? I will set my intention for what I want to focus on. Then I will create an opening ceremony using whatever aspects I choose: maybe start with few sun salutations, followed by some smudging and morning pages (Thanks to Julia Cameron and The Artist's Way for this one). Then it will be time for breakfast and maybe a sit in the sun (if it is shining) and from there we will let the day unfold as it will.
And then I will hold a Goddess Gathering at my home to help women take the time for their own retreat.
Sign up for my newsletter to find out some tips for having your own mini retreat.