I have just returned from a retreat with a client up in the mountains. We had a wonderful, insightful and powerful two days and as we drove down the mountains back to the world she asked me if I often worked with people who felt stuck in every area of life, like she had. The answer is yes I do and I also work with people who feel stuck on one area. That’s why I created these retreats in the first place.
There is a hermit in all of us – for good reason.
I know myself looking back through my life there were many times when I felt stuck. I didn’t always have my answers as to what I could do to get unstuck. Often my impulse was to try to ignore it until the feeling went away, trouble is that it doesn’t. We can get really busy so that we don’t to have time to deal with the issues but it does not go away. Do you recognise yourself in this?
For me it was at those challenging times that I might try and do my hermit trick. When I look back through my life there were a few distinct times when I decided that my life would be easier if I just lived away from all this hassle. And we all want to run away from what’s happening at times – it is normal. And that impulse is useful – it is telling us that we need to stop and reassess our lives. That’s a good thing and nowadays we do not all need to be hermits up the mountain. There are other options.
When I was a child I used to imagine myself living in a croft in the highlands in Scotland. A small crofters cottage – no electricity, water from the spring and otters playing in the brook beside my home. I think I was probably influenced by the book Ring of Bright Water! However it was this feeling peace that I felt I would get by living in this kind of environment that I craved. That feeling of wanting out.
That impulse to leave the busy-ness of life behind and ignore the rest of the world showed up many times in my life. In my mid thirties I moved to rural Somerset and bought a lovely cottage in a valley. ‘This is it’ I thought to myself, I could quietly get on with life here and no hassles. It lasted 11 months until I was seemingly uprooted and left. I told myself I’d be back – but of course I never was and that ended up three years later with me living in the Ashram for four years.
Sometimes what we think is a hermit’s solution is the biggest teacher of all.
It looked like another hermit scenario – but in fact it was one of the most challenging, learning, life changing and wonderful experiences of my life. I left because one of the many things I learnt is that we cannot run from life, particularly if we feel stuck. We need to lean into life and let it show us what’s next. I needed to take all that I had learnt by being there and go and use it in the world, and help others to do the same.
Which is one of the reasons I created the individual retreat. You get to be the hermit up the mountain, for a couple of days – but not to hide from the world. Instead you get to take a step back and look at your world and work out what’s missing, what needs to shift and change. It may be big outer changes or it may also be big inner changes – either way you will come down the mountain with a greater clarity than ever before.
In the quiet you can find your own solutions, your own clarity.
As one of my recent retreaters said:
“Jessica is a wise soul with a gift for helping others identify their needs and desires, see the way forward and feel excited about life. She knows more about human nature, how we limit ourselves and, more importantly, what we can do about it, than I thought anyone could.
In less than two days with Jessica she helped me understand my needs and values and I learned that happiness, for me, is having those needs met and living and working in a way that is aligned with my values. In my decades on this planet, I had not learned these basic truths about myself. She took less than two days to get me there… I left with more energy and optimism than I would have thought possible; and with practical advice and a plan.
I wish I could tell anyone who has found Jessica how lucky they are – and to seize the opportunity to spend time with her.“
Taking the time out to reassess your world, particularly if you feel stuck in any or all areas, is priceless. My retreat is just one way of doing it and if you’d like a chat about gifting yourself that time out do drop me a line or give me a call on +44 (0) 203 239 6155.
But whether or not this is right for you if you do feel stuck please don’t run away from it – lean into it and let it show you where your heart is pointing. As I always say – life is not a rehearsal, don’t wait because if you do ten years might slip by unnoticed. Life is for living – go for it now!
Photo by https://unsplash.com/northwestcollective
What is your life showing you right now? Maybe this has resonated with you, or maybe you are wondering about things that are happening right now in your life. If you feel you’d like some help deciphering your life’s journey then let’s have a chat. You can email me or give me a call on +44 (0)751 891 4604