Our hearts are heavy for those burdened with grief and fear at this time of global uncertainty. We
join you in the reminiscing of what was, while simultaneously wondering what is to come. We do
not know what is on the other side of this collective experience. We do know that Samasati will be
ready to support you when the time comes, when you are drawn to visit with us in the forested
mountains overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Until then, here is a little advise on how to retreat at
Home Stay Retreat
Retreats take planning. No matter where they take place, retreats require attention to details to
ensure a smooth and comfortable experience for participants. Details to consider while planning a
stay at home retreat are similar to that of planning an international retreat. Location, time, food,
theme, and activities are all things to consider. You won’t need to worry about air travel or
ground transportation for this one.
Location: choose a space in your home to dedicate to your retreat day. Treat the space like a
temple. Clear the area of clutter and clean surfaces and windows. If possible, plan to hold some
of your activities outside on the grass or porch. Recruit your house mates to help. A couple of
hours before the retreat is to begin, decorate with flowers and leaves found around your home.
Get out the nice dishes. Take care to make the space as beautiful as possible. Invite everyone to
bring a personal item into the space. The personal item can be anything and no explanation is
Time: International retreats require a tremendous amount of time to coordinate and facilitate.
Luckily, while staying at home you can put a retreat together in just a couple of days. Decide on a
day and time. Make a flyer or poster to tell everyone in your home. Will your retreat be two
hours or two days? You choose!
Food: Most retreat centers will provide catering for your group that will meet all of their needs.
However, while at home, have everyone join in the fun of planning and preparing. Stay at Home
retreating gives the perfect opportunity for a family style pot-luck. Offer a theme for the menu
such as Spring Time or Thai Food. Remember to include special beverages and desserts. Allow the
chefs to describe their creations before the feasting begins.
Theme: Do not over think this one. Your theme can often be found in your initial idea to have a
stay at home retreat. The feeling or idea that motivated you to host will make a lovely theme to
thread your activities together. Themes help you stay focused and on track with your initial
intention of hosting a retreat for your housemates. Self-Care is a theme that has a timeless
message. Self-care comes in many forms. Be open to ideas from your housemates.
Activities: This is the heart of your stay at home retreat. The activities guide your participants on
an intentional journey. Choose an activity to start your retreat that helps everyone transition from
their normal stay at home day into a retreat at home day. During your short welcome talk review
the schedule and locations of activities. This is a good time to have the chefs share the menu with
the group. Acknowledge everyone’s participation. Even though you have all been under foot with
each other during the preparations still take the precious time to officially acknowledge everything
that was done to make the retreat a possibility.
Samasati is a Yoga Wellness Retreat so all of our retreats include twice daily yoga. Consider
including yoga into yours. If you have a yogi in the family offer them space on the schedule to
guide the group through yogic practices that will enhance the experience and help meet the
intention of the stay at home retreat. Opening your retreat with a ten minute mindfulness practice
will enhance the enjoyment level for everyone. A family member guiding your group is best.
Online offerings are the next best thing. How fortunate we are to have such technology availed to
us. Assign someone the task of finding the appropriate online offerings. Make sure to download
the classes ahead of time so you can be offline during the retreat.
If you could make your way to the southern Caribbean coast to Samasati you would find plenty of
outdoor activities all around our area. Hiking, snorkeling, surfing, culture immersions with
indigenous tribes, chocolate making classes, vegan cooking classes, medicinal farm visits, national
parks…it really is a long list. While snorkeling and visiting indigenous tribes are only found in day
dreams these days, you can download a cooking class or a class on origami. Write a play, make
spontaneous costumes and put on a performance on your porch. Be open to ideas. Have fun.
A general outline for your retreat can look something like this:
9:15am – 10:30am Yoga
10:30am – 11:00am Snacks outside
11-.00am – 1:00pm Cooking Class
1:00pm – 2:00pm Lunch
2:00pm – 3:00pm Rest and Quiet time
3:00pm 4:00pm an activity to create a reminder of your retreat (at Samasati we make Malas)
4:00pm – 6:00pm Restorative Yoga
6:00pm – 8:00pm Dinner
Bonus: include a dress code to add a professional level for your Porch-Traits!
Now that you have some framework get started planning your stay at home retreat. We would
love to see your Porch-Traits too! Tag us so we don’t miss a smile!
We will see you in the jungle soon.