Create Your Own Virtual Retreat at Home

Create Your Own Virtual Retreat at Home

“In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion.” ~Albert Camus

This is the year we all need a little nurturing and by retreating from our outer world with a virtual retreat, we can escape 2020 for a little while. Since the pandemic started, all vacations and retreats have been put on temporary hold. So why not treat yourself to a little self care at home?

Here are a few tips for creating your own virtual retreat experience:

Prepare for your at-home virtual retreat in advance. Set aside a day or two in which you can totally disconnect from your everyday routine and schedule it on your calendar. Make sure that your friends and family know of your plans so you can be inaccessible as much as possible during that time. Do any chores and errands before so you can clear your mindset. Sit down and
create your retreat schedule and stick to it, making time for meditation/yoga, long walks, arts and crafts as well as downtime for journaling, reading and resting.

Pick your meditation and yoga experience in advance and find an audio guided meditation or two to have ready and select your yoga classes online. I would recommend a yin or restorative yoga class to achieve the most relaxed state of mind and body. Be sure you have all your at home props ready and aromatherapy to make the experience complete and enjoyable. Try adding meditation to your walk. A walking meditation is designed to bring body and mind in sync while we enjoy nature. And if you don’t like to sit and close the eyes to meditate, this is a great alternative that still trains the mind in awareness.

Create a healthy menu for the retreat with healthy snacks and meal prep done in advance. Prepare your healthy menu, keeping in mind all meals and snacks so you can prepare everything beforehand making things as easy as possible. Pick a few healthy recipes you want to try or some old comfort food favorites. When eating your meals and snacks, use the yogic eating method of taking one bite at a time, putting our utensil down and chewing completely. Contemplate the food you take in while you are eating. Enjoy the slower pace of eating mindfully.

Take time to gather reading and journaling materials, and pick an art or craft project you’ve been waiting to work on. Gather your preferred reading and journaling materials and create a place in your home just for this purpose. Make sure you have a comfortable chair, proper lighting, reading glasses, blankets, pens and paper handy so when you sit down you don’t have to go searching around for what you need. You may find that after this virtual retreat you decide to keep this set up as part of your home decor. On your bedside table have your bedtime reading material of choice, but try to make it light reading and not heavy for your brain to process before sleep.

Gather any spa products and set aside time for a hot bath or shower, foot soak, face mask, etc.

Follow your schedule as much as possible, but take free time to pause, reflect, rest and digest each retreat experience. Most of all be sure you set aside time for napping and resting your best at night. Your bedroom should be a sanctuary for you to enter into and set aside all anxiety and stress. Make your room as dark as possible by closing window coverings and turning off, unplugging or removing any devices with small colored lights. Create a luxurious place for you to rest your body with pillows and soft blankets.  Go to bed a little earlier during your retreat and allow yourself to wake up naturally so you get your best nights rest.

Enjoy your personal virtual retreat at home, you’ve earned it this year!

Rene Hawthorne

Rene’ Hawthorne, 500HR RYT, (a.k.a. The Lotus Chick), is a former classical ballet dancer with The Dallas Ballet. For the past 11 years, yoga has been her focused passion. Her teaching style is a fusion of years of various dance experiences and yoga trainings. She currently teaches at her home studio, The Sweet Spot and at The Mat Yoga Studio in Dallas, Texas. Offering a variety of weekly classes ranging from vinyasa flow yoga, kids yoga, private yoga lessons, corporate yoga and Doga (yoga with your dog), you will find something for every member of the family. Check out her website to find a class for you at