As my husband, son and I were driving home from our uniquely restful, quiet Thanksgiving at the beach, we hit a gnarly patch of traffic and felt our just-released shoulders rise with the stress of it, our breathing become temporarily tight. It took us a few miles to realize it was “Black Friday” related traffic, people getting off at the mall. And so it begins, I thought. The hustle, the bustle, the pressure, the feelings of obligation and overwhelm. But it doesn’t have to, said another voice in my head. A newer voice I’ve been listening to more often. I don’t have to be part of the snarl of the holidays, and neither do you. Just as my husband and I opted out of a more complicated family to-do this year in favor of a mellow one, I realize that the choice is on me as to whether I will let outward forces at this time of year dictate how I feel, and how I spend my time.
This idea of taking a pause at a time of year that demands so much of us is partly why Martha and I are offering a day-long renewal retreat in the midst of it all. It’s only in the pauses, the small spaces we carve out for ourselves, that we have the peace to listen to these voices that are always trying to speak through us. These loving parts of ourselves want us to do what feels good, not what pressures dictate.
It’s a special kind of retreat just for you. A day in which we will use the powerful mythic guidance of the Universal Story, a design that helps writers find the plot and the compelling characters in their fiction, to effect some change in your own life. Here, it will help you be the hero of your own story, identify at least one goal for your life, and allow you to create a new set of possibilities for your life.
It’s only one day. The hustle will still be there when you’re done, if you should still choose to enter it. The obligations will remain in their stiff spots. But you might feel a little different about it all when you go home.
Tentative schedule HERE: