By Brian Leaf
Before I was a parent, I was a yoga retreat addict. You could find me at The Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health or at The Omega Institute, or certainly at a yoga class downtown. But, now, I'm happy to get ten minutes of sun salutations with my boys on a weekend.
According to Jessica Berger Gross in her Yoga Journal blog, Enlightened Motherhood, I am not alone. She writes, "Once upon a time, in a distant far off galaxy known as the time before I became a mother, I used to occasionally save up and attend personal retreats—studying yoga intensely, taking a juice fast, diving into a meditation practice, or simply spending a weekend away relaxing with a good book, a vegetarian meal, and a killer massage."
And this does not quite have to end with babies, says Berger Gross. She gives seven very practical suggestions to get some much needed R&R right at home.
Here are a few of her seven tips:
Walk in the woods. At many retreat centers, a perfect day begins with a walk in the woods. Whether you live in the country or in a big city, there’s bound to be some sort of nature, whether a hiking trail or an urban park, near you. Take a lunch break by tree and see what a difference twenty minutes in nature can make.
Try out a new, healthy recipe. Veggie Chili, anyone? Or take your family out for a meal at your favorite vegetarian restaurant.
Meditate. For too many of us, myself included, mediation is something that we practice on retreat religiously, but that quickly falls off our at home to do list. Even five early morning or late night minutes can help you touch that peaceful yoga retreat feeling. Have more time? Sink into a 45 minute sitting.
Sleep. After you put your child or children to sleep, give yourself an early night, too. (There are no televisions on retreat.) Nothing is as luxurious as nine or ten hours—or more!—of sleep.
The best part of bringing a retreat home? You can deepen your practice, without missing even one dinner/bath/bedtime.
Berger Gross concludes, "The best part of bringing a retreat home? You can deepen your practice, without missing even one dinner/bath/bedtime."
I could not agree more.
Read the rest of Jessica Berger Gross' article here.
Image credit: freedigitalphotos.net
About Brian Leaf
Brian Leaf is author of the yoga memoir, Misadventures of a Garden State Yogi: My Humble Quest to Heal My Colitis, Calm My ADD, and Find the Key to Happiness. You can find him online at www.misadventures-of-a-yogi.com.