Intuitive Touch Massage Therapy

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<> Silent Retreat at Your Own Home

What Is a Silent Retreat? 

Silent retreats encourage us to observe and be present with ourselves by taking a vow of silence. There is no talking during meditations as well as during meals, yoga, journaling, reading, and other activities.

This includes not interacting with others by text or email, and temporarily avoiding contact with the outside world to focus on the inner world.

I provide support to help you get the most out of your Silent Retreat

Have you ever wondered if you can do a Silent Retreat in your own home? These times while being with others is risky for our health can be a great time to try it! I can provide varying levels of support for your silent retreat, as described below. Text or email to inquire or schedule: 720-443-2537; 12mountains@gmail.com

  1. Per-Retreat Planning Session: $50-200 (30 min to 2h)
  2. Post-Retreat Reflection Session: $50-200 (30min to 2h)
  3. Extra Support, Pre and Post Retreat: Personalizing Your Retreat to meet your needs.
  • If we do not cover all of your questions during the Pre and Post Sessions, we can spend as much time as you need to accomplish this. We may even spend months doing guided meditation sessions and/or reflections to prepare you for the retreat. In fact, if you prefer to work one on one, there is no 'need' to do a silent retreat at all. We can personalize a program for you in a way that best meets your needs. Below are some ways in which I can support your practice or retreat preparation
    • One on one guided meditations (You may record these personalized guided meditations to use during your retreat.)
    • Build a schedule that suits your comfort-level, experience, personal challenges, and specific needs
    • Discuss your goals in detail; Write them out clearly; Prepare reflection questions that help you promote growth, serenity or other personal goals.

General Goals of a Silent Retreat

Gaining awareness about your own mind and how it works; working through challenges toward growth or serenity or understanding

  • Self discovery
  • Monitoring automatic thoughts. Am critical? Do I recognize areas of self-confidence or doubt?
  • Noting of recurring emotions
  • Is there something blocking a fuller emotional experience or expression?
  • Am I comfortable spending long periods with my thoughts?
  • Do I feel bored? Try to plan?
  • Are there things about myself that I am uncomfortable with?
  • Confronting negative thoughts and re-writing stories: Is my thought true? What is true about it? verses What do I think about it?
  • Increase self-acceptance and self-worth
  • Self-Revelation

The masks we wear are for the most part conditioned and adopted. Most people never stop to examine and question their thoughts. In these moments of silence, we can better see our truth.

Preparation

  • Give yourself permission. You deserve it. Give this time to yourself.
  • Create intentions. Look inside yourself and find out what you feel you need.
  • Choose a location and a time frame.
  • To help create accountability for yourself, let loved ones -- or myself -- know when you are beginning and ending your retreat. You may even schedule reflection sessions or live guided meditations with me during the silent retreat.
  • Make boundaries: Communicate with those who you will see or share a space with during your retreat, asking them to respect the container of silence you’re creating and to not disturb you.
  • Gather your necessities before the retreat period begins.
  • Make a food plan: Pre-prepare light meals (vegetarian recommended).
  • Turn off all your devices and electronics.

Possible Daily Schedule for 3-Day Silent Retreat

Day 1 

7am - 7:30 Observe and challenge thoughts (Is my thought true? What is true about it? What am I assuming? Can I challenge my negative thoughts/perspective?) This exercise is to avoid misjudging or making harsh assumptions that may not be true; it is not about misrepresenting difficult things as positive.

7:30 - 7:45 Guided meditation

7:45 - 8:00 Awareness meditation (15 min)

8:00 - 8:30 Visualization meditation [focus on intentions for the retreat]

8:30 - 9:15 Breakfast and tea

9:15 - 10:15 Mindfulness meditation (60 min)

10:15 - 10:45 Journaling

10:45 - 11:45 Walking Reflection meditation [Intentions and goals. Current feelings about job/relationships]

11:45 - 12:30 Loving kindness meditation

12:30 - 1pm Lunch

1:00 - 2:00 Body scan followed by nap

2:00 - 2:15 Guided meditation

2:15 - 3:00 Awareness meditation with journaling (45 min)

3:00 - 3:30 PT or other exercise to nurture your health or heal an injury

3:30 - 5:15 Mindfulness meditation (90 min)

5:15 - 5:30 Journaling [what are your main thoughts that break your focus? Gratitude and affirmations]

5:30 - 6:30 Dinner

6:30 - 8:00 Alternating guided meditation with awareness meditations. 15 min each w/ journal

8:00 - 8:30 Visualization meditation [Focus on confidence and vulnerability: transparency, honesty, acceptance]

8:30 - 9:00 Bath

9:00 - 9:30 Journal, massage [Focus on what would fill you up, what I want/need, what is uncomfortable]

9:30 - 10:00 Body scan followed by sleep

Day 2

7am - 7:30 Observe and challenge thoughts

7:30 - 7:45 Guided meditation

7:45 - 8:30 Reflection meditation [Emotions and expression]

8:30 - 9:15 Breakfast and tea

9:15 - 10:30 Mindfulness meditation (60 min)

10:30 - 11:00 Yoga

11:00 - 12:30 Journaling [Track your emotions and thoughts: spend some of the time just noting what thoughts come up]

12:30 - 1pm Lunch

1:00 - 2:00 Body scan followed by nap

2:00 - 2:30 Reflection meditation [Source of negative thoughts]

2:30 - 2:45 Journaling [gratitude and affirmations]

2:45 - 3:30 PT or other exercise to nurture your health or heal an injury

3:30 - 5:30 Mindfulness meditation (2 hr)

5:30 - 6:30 Dinner

6:30 - 8:00 Alternating guided meditation with awareness meditations. 15 min each w/ journal

8:00 - 8:30 Visualization meditation w/ music [Focus on emotional layers of your experience of yourself]

8:30 - 9:30 Journal [Focus on what would fill you up, what you want/need, what is uncomfortable]

9:30 - 10:00 Body scan followed by sleep

Day 3

7am - 7:30 Observe and challenge thoughts 

7:30 - 7:45 Guided meditation 

7:45 - 8:30 Awareness meditation

8:30 - 9:15 Breakfast

9:15 - 10:15 Reflection meditation [What do you want? Can you connect with your heart and mind to understand  and identify your core desires? Through meditation we may decrease the clutter in our minds and find clarity and wisdom surface to inform us of who we are and what we wish for.] (60 min)

10:15 - 10:45 Journaling

10:45 - 11:45 Walking loving kindness meditation

11:45 - 12:30 Journaling

12:30 - 1pm Lunch with tea

1:00 - 4:00 Mindfulness or awareness meditation (3 hr) [Spend some of the time writing notes to keep track of automatic thoughts]

4:00 - 4:30 PT or other exercise to nurture your health or heal an injury

4:30 - 5:30 Journaling

5:30 - 6:30 Dinner

8:00 - 8:30 Bath

8:30 - 9:30 Journal, self-massage [This can be as simple as rubbing lotion into your skin or doing slow circles by your temples.]

9:30 - 10:00 Body scan followed by sleep

Day 4

  • Ask yourself: What have I learned about my mind, myself? Write these answers down.
  • Ask: Do I feel stillness or clarity?
  • Take a deep breath. Can I breath out any anxiety?
  • Ask: What am I excited about? What do I wish to engage in? What tools/learnings do I want to apply to my experiences today, as I reenter the outside world?
  • What do I think would fill me up today?
  • For what am I appreciative? Can I express that to someone?

Descriptions of Suggested Meditation Practices in above schedule

* These may be substituted by other meditation styles.

 

Meditation Position

All these meditations may be performed sitting in a comfortable position, laying down, or in a traditional meditation posture. There is a sweet spot of being comfortable enough while limiting distractions but also being able to stay awake and focused. 

Mindfulness Meditation

The goal of this meditation is to be focused on your awareness of the present moment. You may focus attention on the breath and take notice when the mind wanders into thoughts of the past or future or into daydreams. If you are having difficulty keeping your attention on the breath, you may count out breaths up to five or ten and then repeat, or mentally say “in” and “out” along with the breath.

  • Note the thought or emotion (Take 3-10 breaths → note emotion/thought →  repeat.)
  • Count breaths
  • Focus attention on a specific part of the breath
  • Focus attention on a specific physical sensation

Visualization Meditation

Visualize an image or possible future during the meditation. Guide your thoughts and feelings with safe or positive imagery to calm your nervous system and nurture well-being, confidence, self-love, compassion, etc. within yourself. You may use these meditations to help make decisions and find out how you feel about different ideas or courses of action. You may also use these meditations to visualize a change that you want to make or a future that you'd like for yourself. It can be motivating.

  • Visualize an image or future during the meditation
  • Emotional and expressive version of yourself
  • Confident or Healthy version of yourself
  • Mantra to say and feel during visualization meditation:

"I am whole. I am not broken. I am perfect just as I am. 

I want to know myself. I am willing to see myself. I am willing to allow my layers to peel away. I accept whatever is there. I accept myself as I am. I accept all of myself. I want to see all of myself and tell myself that every part is OK. It’s OK. I love myself. I care about myself. I want to nurture myself, to feel nurtured and to heal. I want to see and know my truth. I accept it. I accept my past and my present. I wish for myself to be free... to be free of judgement, free of negative self-talk. Full of love. Full of nurture. Full of acceptance. I wish to be humble and to understand myself. I wish to be free and filled with self-compassion and self-love.

Let me surrender, enveloped by that self-compassion and to my deepest self."

Loving kindness meditation

In this meditation you direct positive energy to yourself and then to others. You may lightly smile during this type of meditation to encourage positive feelings. 

Awareness meditation 

This meditation is like mindfulness but without focusing on the breath. It just rests the mind. Use these to allow the mind to wander and observe where it goes. When a thought or feeling comes, give that thought or feeling your attention and some time. Follow a thought and acknowledge feelings that arise, and then try to let them go. This can be particularly helpful in introspection. Keep a paper journal by your side while you do this kind of meditation so that you can take notes of your thoughts. This can be particularly helpful for letting go persistent thoughts.

It can be helpful to do an awareness meditation after a guided meditation to allow myself time to reflect on the ideas in the guided meditation.

  • Like mindfulness meditations, but without the focus and just resting the mind. Use these to allow the mind to wander and observe where it goes. Journal after/during these sessions.
  • Try smiling and see how it affects your emotions.

Guided Meditation

These are pre-recorded meditations with guidance. These may be relaxation/breathing meditations or meditations with a “lesson” at the beginning and/or end. If you have the Calm App or other meditations you enjoy, please plan which meditations to listen to ahead of time.

You may use these meditations on this link: [22-32 min] 

The below meditations are topics you may find on the Calm App:

  • Meditation - Vulnerability [10 min]
  • Meditation - Protected walls [10 min]
  • Meditation - Inner Narratives [10 min]
  • Meditation - Self-esteem [11 min]
  • Meditation - Habit of thinking [12 min]
  • Meditation - Mindful eating [11 min]
  • Meditation - Fear that underlies anger [10 min]
  • Meditation - Openness [11 min]

Reflection meditation

Ask a question and then focus on the feelings that arise. Let the wisdom within you rise from the stillness you nurture in your meditation.

  • Are there blocks or unconscious resistance? Am I afraid of emotions? Imagine being more emotional and see what that looks like. 
  • Why is it difficult to express the emotion that I do feel?
  • Would giving up control and surrendering allow me to be more emotional? Can I nurture surrender in myself, so that I may be more vulnerable and have closer relationships? Can I open myself up to seeing what walls I may have? Let me see what is there, what may be holding me back. May I embrace surrender by letting go of any walls I see? How may I lift the walls that keep me from more fully surrendering?
  • Source of negative thoughts and feelings: Is there something behind my anxiety? Is there a root worry driving other worries?
  • Is there a source of my feelings of low self-worth? What is keeping me from really feeling worthy of love and care?
  • What do I want for myself in the future
  • What do I want from my job? 
  • What do I want for my social life? Am I spending enough or too much time with friends and family? 
  • Which of my fears are useful? When is anger useful? What times would it be more productive to be angry than sad? Do I tell myself that being angry about something is bad or should be avoided?

Walking meditation

  • This can be any of the other types of meditation while walking. A source of focus for an attention meditation can be the stride.

Observe Waking Thoughts/Feelings

  • Feeling and Thought Tracking: Use emotion wheel if unsure
  • "I am having the thought…”
  • "I am experiencing the feeling..."

Challenge and Transform Negative Thoughts

  • Write alternate stories. What is true? What is a positive perspective that may be true? Can you look at the thought from someone else’s perspective (or from a distance - to put it in perspective)?

 

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