Why mothers need to retreat
Mamas, it's time to RETREAT YO' SELF! Now before you sigh and say "I wish - ain't got time for that Holly" just hear me out. Actually, I'm going to give the floor to yoga teacher and retreat leader - Tina Bruce. There's so much more to retreat-ing than expensive getaways with fluffy robes. Tina of Restore A Yoga Mum, delves into why modern Mamas need space away from our family and home to course correct. This is an eye-opening piece that will hopefully make you realise the real benefits of a retreat.
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Written by Tina Bruce - owner of restoreayogamum.com.au.
It is not a simple task for mothers to leave their families for a weekend let alone a whole week. These rapid changes in our time have seen along with it a rise for the need for both mothers and fathers to exit their ordinary lives and all the accompanying chaos. The responsibilities we face in this modern world are so intense that it is changing us from the inside out. We are the first generation of parents to be raising children in the digital age, which has not only increased the speed at which our kids are learning and developing, both physically and mentally, but it is also demanding that we ‘parent’ faster.
Our wellbeing is being affected by the pressure of scheduled activities and screen time. We are facing resistance from our children every day as we have become monitors of their online life more than their offline life. And it is to our detriment. We are paying a big cost in terms of our overall health staying in balance and managing our energy. As a consequence the longing to grow and evolve our spirit so that we have the stamina to not just be ‘mother monitors’ but engaged and present ‘loving mothers’ is stronger than ever.
My purpose in this life is to teach people how to slow down and listen to the voice of their soul. A retreat will get you beyond your five senses and all the external distractions of domestic concerns so that you can dig deep and hear your soul voice again. Mystical soul-size questions such as ‘What does my soul need?’ and ‘What do I miss about myself?’ ‘What are my values and how have they changed in the last year?’ become louder as your kids’ birthdays roll on. Because you are not the same person that you were the year before. Giving birth and raising children alters you. So much has happened and shifted since becoming a Mother that you really need to insert a pause button just to examine your own life.
Soul-sized questions aren’t really logical questions so you will have a hard time ‘thinking’ about those answers. They require some sacred listening and time to explore the inner cave of your heart. Because buried deep beneath all the responsibilities and roles you play is a hidden jewel. It might be surrounded by dust and layers of dirt but it is there. And it wants to be polished so you can shine.
A retreat is not a place to go to solve a problem. It is an opportunity to examine why things are a problem to you in the first place. This type of exploration may require you to ask yourself questions such as ‘Help me understand what it is I am doing which is creating this problem or this road block or this pain?’ Destructive habits and behavioural patterns we adopt every day are largely driven by subconscious programs, many which do not serve our wellbeing. So a retreat is a chance to get to know ourselves once more.
Retreats will reveal truths about you and course correct your path so that the direction you are walking towards is back to a state of balance. Not back to your buried and over burdened mothering self. ‘Mothering’ is what we do but it is not necessarily who we are. To prioritise your soul is an act of self love which actually vaccinates your own children against low self esteem. My kids have observed me going off on retreat every year since they were toddlers. It excites them when I go away as they get to hang out with Dad and enjoy more lunch orders. I can only hope they follow my example as they grow.
Revelations, A-ha moments and transformations are the result of guidance and insight you receive when on retreat. When you nurture your Mystical Mother, you understand your nature. When you understand your nature, you make better choices, you become inspired or ‘in-spirit’. When you create the right space the light can find you in the form of ideas, clarity and even the power of Grace as you experience the feelings of awe and wonder again.
Traditional retreats were often in silence or in Buddhist monasteries. This has clearly changed as we have adopted these experiences to suit the modern woman. Comfort, luxury, spa treatments and connection with friends are now the abundant qualities that the the modern woman is attracting. As well as doing the inner work retreats can now be pleasurable! This excites me the most because mothers in particular need to feel good if they are going to go home and give. And one of the best parts about retreating is that you can ease up on your mental load as every decision for you in terms of your schedule has already been curated and crafted on your behalf to offer you the most incredible experience of YOU.
When you leave a retreat you go equipped with the tools on how to honour your Mystic Mother. So that when you return to regular life, you can put yourself in a retreat space as needed in your own home. Because rest assured there will be a day when you wake up and you will need to create your own ‘time-out’. You can then draw on this wisdom and fill it with the things that fuel your soul. Whether that includes yoga, meditation, journaling, a bathing ritual, massage or a long walk you can set it up in your own style. Some people may call this developing a home practice, I like to call it Mama’s Retreatment.
Join Tina at the Soul Spark Retreat next year (25th - 31st May 2019) in Bali.
ABOUT RESTORE A YOGA MUM
Yoga Teacher and Retreat Leader.
Business owner: Tina Bruce
Fav café: Mr Geezer Middle Park
Coffee order: A Large Latte