When does anyone have time to do anything anymore? Diaries are booked up months in advance, synchronised with family and friends, kids, schools, jobs, gyms – where do you get time for yourself? In our populated, over-burdened world, we need to make time for stillness, focus and reflection.
Retreats have been increasing in popularity since the world emerged from the depths of the recession and the global trend towards health and well-being boomed.
Now, the wellness industry is reported to be worth over £2 trillion!
There was a time when retreats were destination-only holiday replacements that you chose when you wanted to escape life for a week or two and most likely head to the sun. Whilst utterly lovely, it’s not often that convenient financially or accessible physically to retreat all that regularly in this manner, which is why there has been a strong emergence of close-to-home retreats over weekends, or longer.
The types of activities and specific focus on such retreats ranges from the more popular health and wellbeing roster of the yogas, meditations, pilates of this world to personal growth and development or working on a creative skill – whether artistic or musical.
It’s not just retreat organisers who are creating these events for individuals. Businesses are also tapping into the softer sides to personal development, prefering to take their teams on quiet retreats over excessive debauched weekends. Rather than getting too drunk at a late-night bar, where little is remembered the next morning, retreats provide opportunities for people to get to know each other better, to de-stress together and forge stronger relationships as a team. With stress accounting for over 50% of work related absence, it’s great to see they are taking the well being of their staff seriously.
The popularity of organisations such as The School of Life or The Do Lectures that offer talks or workshops in personal or professional development themes: how to be more confident, how to write a compelling story, how to think like an entrepreneur – shows people’s interest in activities that help them develop as individuals. OK, so some of these are evening workshops which fit perfectly into an already busy life, but nothing beats crossing the threshold, into a place to call home for a few days, with the option of turning off your mobile (“No signal”), to explore your own mind and focus on something for yourself, with the added bonus of beautiful surroundings, empty spaces and nature.
The pace of activity at an on-site retreat has a gentle balance between work and play where the down time focuses on the beautiful, peaceful surroundings, good food and comfortable house or location.
Pennard House in Somerset runs two types of popular workshops over the course of a five-day retreat: Songwriting and Creative Writing Workshops. Aimed at individuals whose creative talent would benefit from the peaceful surroundings of Somerset, the ample space to find your own corner for writing, to clear your head of distractions and gain some professional tutorage at the same time. They have daily workshops, themed dinners and brain training exercises, a guest speaker and professional authors or song writers on hand to share advice.
If it’s been your life long desire to write a book or indeed a song and are fast running out of excuses, you may want to give them a call…
All of our houses would make wonderful retreat venues. If you are looking for availability to run a retreat of your own, please get in touch today firstname.lastname@example.org