My Review on The Self Love Retreat (Gambia)

My first Self Love Retreat  ended last Saturday, and I’m now thinking about how I can make it even better!  Firstly, the three ladies who joined me commented that it went far too quickly; I personally arrived two weeks ahead of the Retreat in order to unwind and de-stress, and while I had intended for us to have plenty of time to do that, we were trying to cram so much into the week!

We started off with a Pamper Day at the Kairaba Hotel in Kotu, where we had a full body massage, facial, manicure and pedicure.

I purposefully kept the numbers for the first Retreat small because The Healthy Ways Guest House (where we were staying with Mama Naasira and Dr Joe Bledsoe) only holds up to 6 people.  Their Spicy Tasty Vegan Cuisine meals played a big part in the healing aspect of the Retreat.

The aim of The Self Love Retreat is to nurture your Self from the INSIDE, OUT.  The Pamper Day was for our outer self, while the Self-nurturing workshops were for our inner Self.  The first workshop was entitled “Who Am I?” which questioned whether we are the things we do, what we have, or what we project to the outside world.   By the end of the workshop, we had developed personalized Positive Affirmations to help re-define ourselves, and speak it into being.  In Part Two, ‘Who I AM!’ (the following day), we recorded the affirmations to music.  This is now a tool we can use to play just before we go to sleep, to help re-program our subconscious mind.  (It’s our subconscious programming that we’re running on most of the time, not our conscious thoughts).

“The Loving  Me workshop gave me a lot of food for thought for reflection” ~ Deanne

I’ve been working with Positive Affirmations for about 15 years, which has brought me from having a ‘Self Love Deficit’ with very low self-esteem, lacking self-confidence, and being a blocked writer and artist for over 20 years, to writing and performing poetry, writing books, painting, and now organizing the The Self Love Retreat. I’m simply sharing some of the techniques that have helped me raised my levels of confidence and Self-esteem, helped me unblock as a writer and artist, and to push myself out of my comfort zone to achieve more.  The day before the Retreat has due to start I was writing my journal and the first thing I wrote was “Who am I to organize The Self Love Retreat?  What do I know about Self Love?”  This was my critical voice talking, and my old programming of not being ‘good enough’ was trying to creep back in!  I had to silence it with Positive Affirmations about Who I Am.  In the past, I would have succumbed to those voices, and crawled back into the dark cavity in the corner of my mind.  But no, I’m here to make a difference, and in doing so, help others to transform their own lives too!

In another workshop, I shared some research conducted by Dr Masaru Emoto, about the effect our thoughts and words have on water, and because we are made up of 70% water, how pow-HER-full our words really are:

We then stuck “I LOVE YOU” onto a glass of water, and focused our thoughts and intentions into the water, before drinking it – try it!  We also looked into a mirror and said “I LOVE YOU” to ourselves.  This can feel awkward at first, but the more you do it, the easier it will feel.

We also wrote Love Letters (or poems) to our Self based on the Affirmations we developed, and used them to make our Self a card, which we can now refer back to whenever we need a pick-me-up:

When you fill your Self with Love, you can then give of your overflow, and radiate the love you feel for your Self – you will then attract that love back to your Self!

Self Love 30 Day Challenge!

Do these daily rituals to develop Self Love, and see what happens:

  • Close your eyes and go deep within (or look in the mirror) and say repeatedly “I love You!”
  • Pour water in a cup, and say “I love you” into the water before drinking it

If you did the 30 Day Challenge, email me your results: cezanne@journeyofasister.com

Aside from the 5 Self-nurturing workshops, we also enjoyed some Gambian nightlife, and went clubbing two of the nights! I’m not a clubbing person, but I loved the vibe and the Afrobeats!

I had these dresses made especially for the Colour Therapy workshop, which was also meant to incorporate dance, but we ran out of time!  I explained how different colours affect the mood and emotions, and how wearing colourful clothes can make you (and others) FEEL.  Try it!  Incorporating more colour in your life especially during the dark, winter months will help lift your mood and emotions.  (For more information on how I healed myself from Seasonal Affective Disorder using Colour Therapy, visit my Art page).

We didn’t spend enough time on the beach, but we enjoyed early-morning yoga:

I also organized a Day Trip to Kunta Kinte Island, which took us about 3 hours to get to, including two river crossings! We were taken to the original place Kunta Kinte lived (not where they take tourists).  On the long  journey there, we had to take a ferry and a small boat.  Someone had sent me a photo of a boat owned by a sister named Aminatta, encouraging us to use her (in the yellow skirt), but when we got to the island and I found her, the boat was out of action because it needed repairs to the value of around £150:

I told her I would help raise the money and get it to her as quickly as possible, you can send her a gift towards her boat repair using my Gofundme  (put ‘BOAT’ as a reference) and I’ll make sure she gets it ( we’ve raised £45 so far).

See my Instagram  or the Journey of a Sister Facebook Page for more pics and videos, I’m slowly getting around to uploading them all! (feel free to add me).

Geraldine’s Feedback:

“I had an amazing time on The Self Love Retreat – I recommend to everyone!  I feel enlightened, refreshed, healthier and positive.  I’ve learned many techniques to benefit me going forward.  Met so many great people who I intend to keep in contact with.  We made so many memories, I really wanted to stay longer!  So glad I went and Cezanne is the hostess with the mostest, so inspirational, love her!  I will defo do another retreat with you.  I loved Gambia too, will go back” 

Based on the feedback I received, I’ve decided to extend The Self Love Retreat in November to 10 Days so you can relax and unwind for the first 3 days before the workshops start!  The cost for the The Self Love Retreat is just £899 (Flights must be booked separately).  If you can only come for 7 days, the price of accommodation will be deducted.

The date for the next Self Love Retreat (Gambia) is 1- 10 Nov 2018  book your place early, only 8 available!

We will be staying at Ocean Villa Heights, a lovely hotel in Bufurt with swimming pool, internet, restaurant, and spa facilities, and it’s just a few minutes walk to the beach!  To book, go HERE (or send me an email to cezanne@journeyofasister.com pay by bank transfer)

Support a Sista!

I set up a Gofundme campaign in order to be able to offer subsidized places on the Retreat, if you’re unable to attend yourself, but would like to help your sisters on their Self-healing journey, please make a contribution to the Fund!

If you would like to be considered for a place, 1) make a donation to the fund, 2) email me: cezanne@journeyofasister.com explaining why you need it.

More Retreat dates will be added when destinations have been chosen (I’m also looking at Grenada, Jamaica, or Dominica)

Singles & Couples Welcome!

Whether you’re single, or would like to come with your partner, The Self Love Retreat is for YOU!  The techniques will help you in your own personal development, which will no doubt impact your relationship.  If you have any questions, or would like to book, email me: cezanne@journeyofasister.com

Easy Payment Plans for November Retreats

I’d like to make it as easy as possible for you to join me, so I’m offering monthly payment plan options for the Retreats in November 2018 < click on the link to find out more.  If you’re coming from the UK, you don’t need a visa, just book your flight, and pay for your Retreat!

Nurture Your Inner Child Retreat 16-23 Nov

I’ve also organized the Nurture Your Inner Child Retreat in November, where I will take you through the same processes I went through to unblock as a writer and artist, all materials will be provided!  If you’re interested in joining me on any of these Retreats, email me: cezanne@journeyofasister.com

To keep up-to-date with me daily acivities, and for more pics and videos follow me on instagram!

In your service,

 

 

Author|Poetess|Artist|/Workshop Facilitator

Touching the Heart…through Art!

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