TAKE A JOURNEY BACK TO YOURSELF
Everyone you know is walking a pathway that’s personal and unique. Every person you work with and talk to in the world is in the midst of a quiet journey that’s all of their own. For some women, it’s simply a mission to get through the tasks of each day. Work and children can take all of your energy from the moment you wake until the moment you sleep – throw in a partner to boot and the demands and energy expended can seem a bit much! Other women may have the freedom to make space for a deeper journey of the heart and their challenge is staying focused or making a commitment to devote the time they need.
And while we are each walking individual pathways, the heartening and hopeful truth is that we don’t have to walk them alone. There is a sisterhood and a support network for everyone with women traversing the exact same terrain. Whether we are mothers in the early stages of giving to our babies constantly, busy corporate women who are struggling to even make time for the gym or retired women who are finally taking time out to rest.
FIND YOUR PATHWAY AND FIND YOUR PEOPLE
Whatever stage you are at in your journey, clearing space and making yourself a priority is vital. Believe it or not, you do have time! The biggest challenge we have in our busy lives is to constantly come home to ourselves – but that also means calling in the love of our fellow sisters on the path. These women can not only walk alongside us, they can support us and even prompt growth on the continuous pathway to self-love and acceptance. It can feel super isolating in our busy lives, so making these connections a priority will do wonders for your wellbeing.
Our experience running a women’s retreat in Bali has been a blessed witnessing of women take journeys of the heart and soul – both alone and together. We’ve learned that it’s a dual process. That each of us has to walk our own pathway in order to finally find and connect with the people who truly get us. So the journey is not just one to our own heart it’s about finding our like-minded friends, the ones we can lean on and love in return.
“Only as we are in communion within ourselves can we be in community with others.”Parker Palmer
These important women may just be the ones who help us to step out into the wilderness and become courageous enough to honour our authentic truth, so this article is dedicated to finding them as you traverse the path to self.
TAKING WISE STEPS ON THE PATH TO HEALING
It’s often been said that if you can see each step of your path ahead of you – then you’re on the wrong path! But the trailblazers who came before us, the teachers and mentors and spiritual guides we can all take inspiration from became the women they are for a reason. They did the work, they took the journey to finding acceptance of their true selves and they lived to tell the tale with open hearts and open minds.
At our Escape Haven Retreat in Bali, we’re big fans of gathering and transmitting the wisdom we learn from others so here are some of the tactics, tricks and strategies we’ve learned to use to both truly come home to ourselves and to find our soul sisters on the journey.
1 . GET PRESENT, COME DIRECTLY INTO THE MOMENT
The first step to coming home is to get innately present with ourselves. To us, that means directly connecting with what’s happening now, at this exact moment – instead of being distracted by the never-ending stream of thoughts and feelings that as humans we are all subject to.
At Escape Haven we use the practices of yoga and meditation to do this. Each morning on retreat our yoga teachers lead our guests through a beautiful gentle practice. To begin we get present with the breath and the feelings that are here. Then we give ourselves permission to feel exactly as we are before continuing into a healing yoga class. We finish each class with another meditation before heading off into a day of self-care.
Whether you can make it to Bali for an Escape Haven retreat or not, this simple act of getting present with yourself each morning will help. So be brave and do it on your own mat at home even if you can’t do it with us on a tropical island!
“By being willing to leave the mind and arrive in the body you’ll find yourself more able to step into your truth and inhabit your heart.”
2 . LET YOUR INNER COMPASS GUIDE YOU
The catch with finding your path – and ultimately your people – is that you may need to search for it. Our passions rarely come along and bite us on the bum! We must all courageously use our inner compasses to navigate this giant map of life and create a journey that will both fulfil and satisfy our heart’s desire.
Letting your inner compass guide you means taking one step at a time in the direction you feel is right. It may require making a change, it may mean staying still. The important thing is not doubting your compass. When you get present and listen to the truth that exists inside, you may be challenged to act. So accept that challenge! Follow your truth and take the first step regardless of how uncomfortable it may feel. This is what is called true courage and this is what it takes to find your way home.
3 . SHOW UP FOR YOURSELF EVERY DAY
If we remember that every journey starts with just one step then we can train ourselves to take it one step and one day at a time. Yes, it’s a great thing to have an idea of the pathway you want to follow, but taking action is the most important part of making that desire a reality. For many women that means finally saying yes to themselves. It means putting themselves first and showing up for themselves consistently one day at a time. It means feeling the fear, taking a giant breath and leaping into the path of your dreams. Who wants to stand on the step and watch what could have been unfold because they help back?
So we invite you to say no when appropriate and remember that the word no is a complete sentence. You can say no to the people who take from you and say yes to those who give. You may even have to be the one who gives to yourself! Some women find it easy to make a decision to retreat at Escape Haven, others find it more difficult. Showing up for yourself takes self-care and that may mean putting aside other commitments. We assure you, the journey home to the heart is well worth the cost.
FINDING YOUR PEOPLE – JOINING THE SISTERHOOD
With every action comes a reward and on the journey to the heart that reward is often forming a lifelong bond with other women who are walking the path with you. While we know that not everyone can make time for a shared women’s retreat in Bali, there are other ways to find and connect with your people and get the loving support you need.
With full hearts, we have been lucky enough to witness the love and power that happens when women come together to grow and thrive! While we’d love to have you, here are some of the ways you can make this happen without getting on a plane to join us here at Escape Haven in Bali.
Say yes to everything, join in, volunteer and participate in events even when you feel scared and awkward. Explore your community and join them wherever you can. Who knows, your people could be waiting for you in a place you never even imagined.
Do what you love
Whenever you get a chance, commit your time to doing something you enjoy. In an earlier blog here we wrote about creating a joy list and doing things on it. Collect antiques, refurbish furniture, make clothes, travel, play sports – whatever it is that sparks joy inside of you, do that thing and you’re likely to find your people.
Stay by the fire
Go where the love is. Keep putting one foot in front of the other and walk towards the people that make you feel good rather than the ones that make you doubtful. Walking a path to the heart means stoking your own fire so stay warm and surround yourself with embers. Give yourself permission to edit your life and friends and keep the ones that fuel you, close by.
If you suspect you’ve met a like-minded soul on the journey then practice being brave and call them into your circle of support. By being honest you can overcome any intimidation you may feel and understand truly if you’ve met someone important. That might mean sharing your emotions after a difficult yoga class or connecting with another mother about your fears around raising kids – whatever it is, show up as yourself and it will be easier to identify and connect those that you have a true connection with.
Take the space
Don’t be scared to state your truth, be yourself and step out into the wilderness. By honouring your true feelings and speaking up you are essentially owning your journey, directing the path towards love and taking the space you deserve. If you are met with criticism or judgment then you simply are not with your people! Next!
Talk to strangers
This is a real favourite of mine! Bring people in close, they have each been put in your way for a reason so invite connection wherever you can and listen. Every stranger has something to teach you so don’t be shy. Open your ears and your mind and see what unfolds.
Deepen old connections
Social media can be divisive and cause disconnection when misused but it’s also a wonderful way to reignite connection. Try searching on LinkedIn or Facebook to reconnect to the women that you already know.
Make a friend
If you’ve seen or admire a woman in the business community don’t be afraid to approach her. You’ve likely got much in common already so strike up a conversation in person and invite her to coffee. Let your vulnerability show and you may be surprised at who shows up. Nothing gambled, nothing gained right? It’s empowering to select your own circle.
Recognise moments of serendipity when they come along and act on them. For example, if you find yourself stuck in an elevator with someone, or waiting in line at the bank then don’t hesitate to strike up a conversation. You never know why the universe saw fit to place you together so use those moments for all they are worth.
COMMUNE WITH YOUR ONE-NESS TO FIND YOUR COMMUNITY
Escape Haven is a yoga and surf retreat in Bali which means our everyday work involves coming into contact with women who are on a journey to the heart. And what we’ve seen is that the women who are willing to go deep into their own journeys and confront themselves are the ones who ultimately get the growth and change they want from our retreats.
Bali is a magical place, the vibe here is high, the weather is stunning and the atmosphere at Escape Haven makes for an incredible base to do this important women’s work from. If you’re interested in finding out more about our retreats you can click here for the various packages you can choose from. We also invite you to read the other resources we have on our blog, take advantage of the knowledge we’ve been lucky enough to learn from those who’ve gone before us and enjoy your journey, wherever you are in the world.
Escape Haven Bali Retreat, supporting women on year making wellness experiences.
We invite you to come and experience for yourself our award winning Bali retreat. If it’s time to fill up your cup and shrug off all the roles that you wear and all the balls you juggle in your busy life, we’d love to pamper you. From transformational yoga and meditation classes, to exhilarating surf lessons in the warm waters of Bali, fun fitness in our tropical gardens to restorative healing and pampering sessions, how much or little you do is all up to you.