Every person who arrives has something to contribute. Your life trajectory may seem different than those around you initially, but the common thread that brings us all together will leave a lasting impact.
We value each person’s presence equally and know you will make a unique contribution to our dynamic. The week we spend together will be a transformative one held in a positive space. This is a rare opportunity to explore ourselves through personal creative expression. There will be no space for judgment or self-deprecation.
We want every woman to walk away from this experience feeling connected, inspired, rejuvenated, and feeling empowered. Our voices may be our own to explore, but when they are unified, they form an unbreakable front. You are not alone in your journey and this retreat will bring you closer to the people you were meant to find in this world.
We will start and end each day with a community meal. Sometimes it will be prepared by on-site staff and other times it will be a group effort. Food plays an important role in building community and the conversation that comes from sharing a meal together is often a meaningful one. By gathering each morning and night, we will be able to share this intimate space, nourish our bodies, and connect with each other through this sensory exploration.
Daily Writing Workshops
This will be a core of the retreat and something we participate in together at the end of each day. The reason we want to incorporate writing is that, as a tool, it helps us to slow down and reflect on our experiences more than we may allow in our day to day hurriedness.
Writing allows us to hone in on our internal dialogue and find ways to vocalize our experiences through an ever-expanding awareness. All styles of creative expression are welcome and we encourage you to feel secure enough to explore those avenues freely.
We will not question your writing level and encourage your willingness to articulate your experiences through the written word. We will hold space for those who are inspired to share, but we understand if you prefer to keep your musings private. One on one time is available should you prefer and we are happy to give you feedback on whatever your produce.
Breakout sessions for each retreat will be chosen based on the interest provided on each application form. We will host two or three during the week and they will often be held during free time for no longer than an hour each. It’s a way for us to introduce other creative outlets and explore our shared space even further. This will also help you further develop your voice in conjunction with the daily guided writing sessions.
Writing for Social Channels
Life as a Freelance Writer
Watercolor or Drawing
Tools for Establishing Routines
One of the most important facets will be interacting with the cultures of each country, respecting the local customs, and immersing with the people who occupy the spaces we will be moving through. We will be partnering with local guides and community initiatives to bring our worlds closer to those living in the places we intend to visit. Hayli has personally built these relationships over the last few years of travel and she hopes you’ll treat them as family the way they so warmly welcomed her into their lives. You can read more about some of these individuals in each destination brief.
Conservation and Sustainability
We want every trip to leave no trace except for a positive impression. To leave the earth and these communities in better condition than they were found so the next travellers are able to enjoy their splendor. We will dedicate one day to supporting a conservation or sustainability measure. Whether it’s a beach clean up or volunteering with a local organization, we will use our time and personal resources to support the communities around us.
I know this is a play on words, but this will be one of the greatest takeaways from the week. By opening our hearts, we will unearth alot of emotions and many truths will be shared. In holding space of no judgment, we will allow ourselves to be vulnerable in ways we may not have been in the past. It’s important to trust that this is all apart of the growing process and the heart work will bring you closer to who you were always meant to become.
By trusting the community, allowing yourself to feel, exploring your thought process and emotions through creative expression, gaining inspiration from your surroundings, slowing down and being present in your interactions, opening your heart, and surrendering to what was always meant to be, you will walk away feeling more free yet more connected to every facet of your life. The heart work will be hard work, but nothing that’s worth it ever came easy!
Movement and Meditation
We will be focusing on both stillness and momentum in different capacities with the intention of a deeper connection and awareness within ourselves and with our surroundings.
The level of physical activity differs with each retreat and will be outlined in the respective itineraries. For example, the three-day orangutan trekking in Sumatra is more extreme than morning yoga sessions in Ubud. We will be as transparent as possible in the level of required physical activity, but it is your responsibility to disclose any physical ailments in advance that may prohibit you from participating.
As far as the daily group meditations, this will be an opportunity for your Lead Creatives to check in with you and the group throughout the week. Even if you’re a total newbie to meditation, there’s something precious about allowing yourself to remain still and simply be. If you’re not already acquainted with Headspace, we will use the app each day until we bring on a certified meditation instructor for future retreats.
We will start small and gradually work to longer windows of meditation time. We will be using guided meditations focused on mindfulness to aide through these sessions. Afterward, we will do a quick touch base with the group and see how everyone is doing before we begin the activities of the day.
Detox from Technology
The week will serve as a bit of a detox with mornings and evenings free from all technology use. Phones, tablets, and laptops will be turned in each night before the group breakout session and returned during Free Time each day. The exception to the rule will be digital or film cameras as we consider these tools for creative expression and we want you to explore that space freely.
The reason we value this rule is that we want to be mindful and present in our interactions with each other and our surroundings. This will be a rare opportunity to see nature in its purest form. Social media will be there when you’re done. However, the wild orangutan passing overhead will not.
Please trust us on this. You will be much more refreshed after the week if you allow yourself to temporarily disconnect than if you remain distracted by the onslaught of notifications from back home.