In the fall I take an annual writing retreat and I find that it replenishes my soul. This past weekend I treated myself to a Solo Retreat. I didn’t travel to an exotic location or rent a rustic cabin, or even leave my house.
DH was gone most of the day on Saturday with a flight student, so I had the house to myself. I set some goals for myself, to do classwork and write. I was taking two classes simultaneously – The Artist’s Way at Writer Zen Garden and Writing and Resistance: Overcoming Our Blocks to Success by MM Pollard at RWA Online.
My Retreat went like this:
- Slept in – I’m retreating so working on my own timetable.
- Coffee – I’m a bear without my coffee.
- Morning Pages – It’s part of the Artist’s Way
- Class Work – Basically Log on and do homework. However long that took.
- Lunch – On my lunch break I watched the latest YouTube videos by First Draught and Jenna Moreci. I find this a great way take a break and learn.
- Meditate – I used the 12-minute Focus Meditation on Calm.
- Write for 60 minutes – I’ve been using the help of the 90-day novel by Alan Watt to help flesh out my current WIP.
- Read for 30 minutes- Along with Artist’s Way for class. I’m reading The Art of Working by Jeff Goins that I checked out from my Library.
- Write for 60 minutes
- Read for 30 minutes
- Repeated Steps 8 and 9 until DH came home and we had dinner.
I accomplished my goal and was able to enjoy my One Day Solo Retreat.
Can you do this? Sure you can. It might be easier for me because I live on a farm and don’t have a day job, but this is doable for anyone.
Some recommendations. Pick some goals. Are you burned out? Maybe you need to build more Meditation and Yoga into your retreat than I did. How about a luxurious bubble-bath or painting your toes, etc.
I often listen to Pandora on the farm. I choose stations based on mood. I recommend outdoor time if weather permits. I avoided the snowy sub-zero temps…hence some meditation planned into my day.
Regarding Food – If you love to cook, incorporate this into your retreat. Plan a favorite meal to prepare. If you live in a large city consider delivery so you can enjoy the experience and maybe treat yourself. I like to cook, but I wanted to keep the time to myself so I picked up some fancier microwavable meals. I picked up beverages I like, chocolates, and some snacks I love.
If you have other passions like painting, drawing, knitting, scrapbooking, or other creative pursuits into your retreat…especially if you have more than one day. This is a chance to fill your creative well. Who knows, maybe while you are coloring in a color book…that writer’s block will finally release.
I would caution against spending the day binging TV shows or even reading for pleasure. Not because these things are bad, but because they distract you from yourself. If you want to watch that movie you’ve never seen, or read a book, do it in the evening or maybe only for a couple of hours.
Ultimately a Solo retreat is what you make it.