You might think that it is easy to switch off and relax. However, in today’s high connectivity world, where we are all (mostly) guilty of spending too much time with our phones, it’s getting a lot harder to do. We demand everything instantaneously and it might even be true to say that impatience is now virtuous.
Relaxing therefore has become a long lost skill. We can no longer simply shut our front doors and turn off to the World, instead we carry it with us. Information and data, useful or not, are overloaded and, albeit by personal choice, we engage with it and demand more of it, delivered quicker too! So perhaps therefore it is time to take a serious step back and consider some drastic action. Here we look at what a meditation retreat can do for you, and how attending a meditation retreat is perhaps the next thing you should be considering. If you’re keen to learn how to reclaim true relaxation, read on.
Chances are that you are never truly alone, and you have also never properly experience pure peace and tranquillity. You may think you have, perhaps you live on your own, but even then you’ll have the people at work, the commute, the shops, and once home, the pages of social media and television programmes to distract you. When was the last time that you can honestly say that you experienced silence? Don’t worry, for many the answer is never.
All of this noise impacts on your mind, and hence your wellbeing. Of course there is time for the hustle and bustle of daily life, but it cannot be all the time, otherwise you will eventually overload and that is dangerous to your health. It may feel uncomfortable even being silent for a very short period, but you should realise that you are addicted to distractions, you actually crave the noise. It is time therefore to retreat into the silence…
Many will immediately have an image in their mind when they read these words. Often, it is of a virtuous Buddhist monk, sitting in what looks like an uncomfortable position, and doing nothing. Partly this is wrong, but there is some truth in the preconception. There will be silence, and this will feel odd. There will be little if any communication between individuals and a lot of the time will be spent by yourself.
Worst still, there will no doubt be a ban on your phone and other sources of stimulation and information. The idea of course is to give the mind and brain a break from the drowning effect of information overload. This will feel awkward, especially at first, but perhaps think of it another way. If you were unfit physically, you’d go to the gym and the first time you attended it would all seem uncomfortable and alien. However, you’d also realise that the gym would be doing you some good, that it was necessary to feel discomfort at first in order to gain the long term benefits. A retreat is exactly the same, only for the mind instead of the physical body.
It will take roughly around 24 hours before things seem a little less weird or stressful, but you will learn to be more comfortable within yourself, you will develop patience and a new focus. It will be the start of a journey, and you will see changes relatively quickly – though of course we are all different.
Your health matters and therefore you should give yourself the best opportunities to be healthy in both body and mind. A retreat can provide you with the ideal means of learning to relax, recharge and reenergise your mental health. It is a perfect means of stress relief, once you get over the stress of handing in your phone that is! It does however give you a new perspective on what is important to you, as you will be spending a lot of time with your inner thoughts and own mind.
Without the distraction of outside influences however, the focus will turn to what you need, not what you think you might want. There will be no need to search for peace of mind, as it will come to you and that after all is what we spend a lot of time looking to achieve. So if you value your health, and you should, then it is probably time that you considered turning off the World and focusing just on you.