“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you’ve imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.”

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)

Chances are you (like me) make excuses about why you can’t simply go in “the direction of your dreams”. It’s not the right time…it’s not a priority right now…the excuses can be endless while, in reality, the only thing stopping you is YOU.

That’s why when my husband asked me what I wanted to do from my 50th birthday, I knew it was the perfect opportunity to take some time for me. I have been going on regular weekend yoga retreats for the past few years and, with my big day looming, I decided to take this to the next level. That’s why I decided to travel to India (the home of yoga) for a 4 week retreat.

For those of you wondering why I would choose a yoga retreat for a birthday present, here are 3 excellent reasons:

1. The yoga

Fitting yoga into your day can be challenging if you have a busy schedule. But a retreat ensures you practice and progress. I even went a step further and combined my retreat with yoga teacher training, so I would be confident practising by myself at home.

2. The new perspective

I had never been to India, but was excited at the thought of seeing the world, and myself, in a new light. Travelling to a different country for 5 weeks also gave me the chance to break my regular routine and replace unhealthy habits with conscious new behaviours.

3. The detox

Shutting off technology, social media, deadlines, and day-to-day stress gives you a real opportunity to unplug, while the extended periods of quiet provide a chance to really meditate; on a retreat it becomes easier to take the time to breathe deeply and be more present.

We can all be guilty of putting off self-development, or accepting the place we find ourselves (emotionally, physically, financially) – but going on a retreat made taking the time to focus on myself so much easier. And what are birthdays for if not a bit of self-indulgence?

Alison x

Piqued your interest in yoga retreats? Watch this space for some exciting retreat-news…..