I have something to admit: I’ve never been on a retreat. Adventure travel has always been top priority for me, putting wellness on the back burner. However, this weekend I was fortunate to get a taste of what a retreat would be like with “Spring Revival: A Weekend Wellness Retreat” hosted by Maria Christodoulou, founder of Bliss Without Bother. I met with the group of ladies at Soundview in Greenport to experience breathtaking scenery and a little relaxation.
First, I met with Christina Daigneault, founder of Orchard Aromatherapy and co-author of Plant-Powered Beauty. We discussed the multitude of ways she curates essential oils appropriate to her clientele’s therapeutic goal, an aroma profile if you will. She narrows it all down to a synergistic balance of three oils, each enhancing the other’s qualities, similar to a bouquet of flowers.
I received a facial serum to use post-cleansing each morning and evening. It smelled refreshing, using essential oils of Ylang ylang and lavender, used on the skin to promote relaxation, carrier oil of apricot kernel, which tones skin and slows down aging, and jojoba, used to moisturize. In addition, I received a body scrub containing sugar, castile soap (which contains anti-bacterial properties), hemp seeds, and hemp seed oil.
Next, an evaluation of my fatigue and stress levels with founder, Christodoulou. A 14-point checklist for stress and 10-point checklist for sleep. Apparently, I sleep fine but my stress levels are cause for concern. With this in mind, I learned that when in doubt, drink nettles, a nutritive bulk herb and Tulsi (Holy Basil) which is an adaptogen (herbal medicine used to reduce stress).
Rounding out my retreat experience was a Thai massage with Tara Quinn. Unlike a traditional massage, on a table, I was on my back, fully clothed on a comforter on the floor. As Quinn worked on me, I felt a focus on fluid movement. As she lifted and calmly moved my limbs, compression and stretching worked to relieve any muscle tension. I also found myself conscious of deep breathing, in a rhythmic nature that relaxed me.
The combination of these three experiences made me acutely aware of how disconnected I am from my inner body. Like all things in life, there is no single solution for health and wellness. Rather, a retreat helps us work from the inside out to find our peace of mind and body.
Find an upcoming retreat with Bliss Without Bother at www.blisswithoutbother.com.