The almost universal teaching of spiritual retreats, and even many luxurious destination resorts, is to come into the present moment—to come into the now. One of the goals of the retreat is to bring that present home. And that’s all good. We all get it.
But between the here and now is the big question: Do we actually go now? Does our current present involve a retreat, or is coming into the now something that we plan to do someday? Is now the time? No one can answer that question for you. But here is some fodder for your consideration.
1. You’re a caregiver, and you truly believe you can’t go anywhere. Breathe into that thought, and consider that it may be killing you and ultimately doing no good for the person you care for. We all need balance—and you need a break. Spread the word for help that will allow you time and space to nourish yourself so that you can continue to do the good you are doing. It’s time for you to put your wellness first.
2. You’re feeling so stiff and lethargic that you dread your weekly yoga class. If touching your toes requires crouching down and lifting one of them toward your fingers, it’s time to stretch your body and mind. Think on the bright side: You’ll have no problem cramming yourself into a tiny airplane seat. At the end of a good yoga retreat, you’ll be limber enough to make the return trip unharmed.
3. Are the photographs of your last retreat or vacation on an earlier cell phone? If you had to update your photos to have them on your current device, chances are you need a personal upgrade—now.
4. You are fully convinced that whatever pole you inhabit on the political sphere is the place of the righteous. You need to go … now. A truly great retreat will open you to nonjudgmental thinking, by force if necessary. Think of a deep-tissue massage as breaking the boundaries for more fluid and open thinking. You’ll also be more fun at dinner parties.