I'm so grateful for listening to my intuition more recently. After burning out last month following a hectic few weeks of teaching, I decided to pull out of a rocket teacher training and escape to the hills in Ibiza to invest in some much needed 'me' time with my extended family, the Rainbow City community.
Founded by my long-time friend Anthony Lowther, Rainbow City is a roaming lifestyle concept, having run healthy parties, pop-ups, retreats and hotel takeovers all over Europe, based upon the principle of true health: looking out not just for ourselves, but for the planet too. Combining daily holistic practices such as yoga, sound and energy healing and meditation, with planet-friendly, plant-based meals, group exercise, nature walks, trips to the beach, and having fun in a healthy way, the programme provides an opportunity for some truly transformative magic to take place. Whether our intentions were to replenish ourselves and have a break like in my case, or perhaps something a little deeper, we all ended up taking away far more from the experience than we could have imagined.
Every morning we'd wake up to a Yerba mate or green tea, find a mat and start the day with pranayama, meditation and sound healing led by resident healer Dan, or Anthony, surrounded by the elements in the sunshine. We'd then move into a free-flow yoga session or class led by teacher Esme, and were rewarded with the most delicious raw vegan breakfast from the buffet prepared by Rainbow's food wizard Dave and the hosts afterwards. The afternoons were ours to do what we wanted with - we'd read, nap, sunbathe, talk, host workshops, have handstand competitions, explore the local countryside, go running along the coast, and more often than not, end up breaking out into dance and hula-hooping sessions for hours on end.
Time seemed to stand still while I was there - minutes felt like hours and hours like days, each one bringing it's own unique, hilarious chapter. The week felt like so much more than your typical retreat. It was one big celebration, donned in ridiculous fancy dress and covered in glitter - an opportunity to reestablish our connection to our innate, playful nature and be our authentic selves - to show up unapologetically, to be the fullest, brightest version of ourselves and to just celebrate LIFE - because, well why not? We don't need to have a reason to throw a party and be happy - just to be in existence is incredible enough as it is, something we can lose sight of all too often.
Rainbow City has been a big part of my personal journey for years now, and they always help me return to my sense of Self. This retreat gave me the opportunity to hit the reset button - to heal parts of myself I thought were already dealt with, to reconnect to my deepest desires I'd been pushing down and hiding away, and reevaluate what it is I truly want. When you're swept up in the chaos of every day city life and surrounded by so much external noise, you often can't see the wood for the trees and find clarity in your vision. I realised that there are parts of myself that need to be nurtured more, that it's crucial for my inner peace and wellbeing to spend more time in nature and make more time out to focus on my own practice with a view only to serve myself.
We always hesitate to give ourselves the permission to do something that nourishes ourselves - but it's so important for our wellbeing. Let's start showing ourselves a bit more TLC - that we often so willingly give to others without question. The guys have another retreat at the end of the month from 24 - 29 June in Ibiza, and if you're feeling the call for a life-changing experience, I cannot recommend it enough.
A big thank you to Anthony, Dan, Dave and all the other amazing souls I shared this special time with - for laughing with me, for crying with me, for dancing with me, for hula-ing with me, and for holding space for me.
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