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Sunday, August 27, 2006

greetings from retreatland

i'm sitting at a cafe in great barrington, mass sipping peppermint green tea while the rain pours outside. the delight of being connected once again is pure joy. the woodhull retreat was phenomenal. we discussed topics such as public speaking, cultural literacy (more positive than the term "diversity"), ethical leadership, opinion writing, and financial literacy. i met an amazing group of ten women and loved being in the beautiful space that has been created at woodhull. naomi wolf is the co-founder of woodhull and joined us toward the end of the retreat. i interviewed our amazing facilitator, karla jackson-brewer, and look forward to sharing this amazing podcast on leadership with you in september.

shortly i will arrive at kripalu for another 5-day training, this time on yin yoga and mindfulness meditation. however, i will be somewhat reconnected thanks to e-mail access and cell phone coverage. it's amazing how hard it is to be forced offline even when the need to retreat is so powerful. during my time at woodhull, i decided that i should make it an annual plan to take the last two weeks of august off to focus on personal or professional development. many people are away, the pace is slower, and it allows me the time to focus on connecting with that pace. even if you aren't off for a training right now, how can you, too, retreat?

here are a few ideas:

* turn off the cell phone and e-mail for at least a day
* take a mental health day and stay in bed with your chocolate poodle or beau
* pull out your favorite book and dive deeply into it
* immerse yourself in a bookstore
* dying to learn more about tea, ballet, or chocolate chip cookies? spend an afternoon googling the topic and practice what you learn.
* have a home spa moment
* keep one day (or one afternoon) sacred every week as your own personal retreat
* commit to learning something new every day (this is like retreating to me because it takes me out of minutia and into a continual journey)

a *HUGE* thank you to dearest amanda who generated some amazing content while i was offline. her enthusiasm and passion for all things creative and authentic is contagious.

p.s. please remember to share your feedback for our 50th podcast episode!

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Anonymous said...

I'm a big fan of your blog and of tranquil space (I come from the church days). Before I became a mother just under 2 years ago I had all the time in the world. I practiced regularly at Tranquil Space, and did all the other things listed under how to "retreat" in yesterday's post. Even with a husband and nanny I STILL have no time for any of these things. I am a huge fan of yours and mean no disrespect, its just that I find myself growing increasingly frustrated with entries for people with much free time. I would love to see a post on how mothers of babies/toddlers can fit some "me" time into a very tight schedule.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kimberly,

So glad you enjoyed your time up at Woodhull, I was so sad I had to leave you early. Your blog is great!