I have just returned from a magical retreat to Bali called “Pioneering Your Perfect Poison. Attending my first ever retreat, I went with some doubts, anxiety and hesitation. What if I couldn’t do the yoga? What if I wasn’t spiritual enough and didn’t fit in? What if I got really sick and missed out? (if you know me, then you know more often than not I get sick while overseas).
I decided I would try my very hardest to let this all go and just BE.

Be there for me, get what I needed out of it and trust that everything was going to be what it needed to be. Arriving pretty late into my room in Ubud, I jumped into bed and thought as I drifted off to sleep, you are exactly where you are meant to be Nat and tried to follow the sounds of the crickets and frogs to get into a deep sleep.

I awoke to the sun rising, the birds singing and wondering what would unfold into the day, opening my door I was surround by green lush delicious rice fields which filled my heart with just bliss. I had the morning to myself to explore and see what Ubud had to offer. Meeting up with some other retreat participants, we heading out to get massages, eat raw food, get to know each other and start our adventure.

This retreat was an opportunity for me to reconnect with me, nature, create new habits and fall back in love with life again. We were asked to bring a significant offering of some description to share at the retreat. After some consideration, I took a rose quartz love heart crystal, which actually broke in my bag on the way to Bali. The rose quartz heart crystal breaking, seemed poignant as in the past year I felt like my own heart had broken, and that I had forgotten how to love me and do all the things that made me feel good. So on our first night, sharing this story with strangers I felt vulnerable, exposed and scared, but it wasn’t long before I felt incredibly loved, nurtured and supported, as everyone opened their heart and shared their intention, purpose and stories with me.

Lucinda Light, one of our organisers, through her vibrancy, love and openness created a place where we each were able to support, give compassion, empathy and love throughout the whole week to each other. Our facilitators nurtured us through the journey, offering full accountability and our ability to pioneer our perfect poison. Our first night ended with a super fun dance party with moves that made our souls come out of the darkness they had been hiding. This set the scene for a magical week ahead.

Every morning we were asked to be silent between seven and nine, which give us the opportunity to ease into the day. Meditation and breathe practice occurred where the sun would rise over the rice fields filling out heart, mind and body with heat, love and reminding us how amazing mother earth truly is.
Starting my day with mediation and yoga made me realise how disconnected I am with body. We accept the daily aches and pains as just how life should be, but no more. By honouring that our bodies are meant to move, stretch, open and expand in Bali, I am hoping that I do this every day even if it’s for 10 minutes. I was so proud of how much I’d progressed on my yoga journey, which actually started with the yoga instructor, the insanely beautiful Dr Natasja Fox, three years earlier.

The food was the next area that I needed a gentle reminder about, what I put in, is what was I get out, and in Bali it’s easy to eat good food and feel amazing. Ubud is the hub for fantastic food, yoga, meditation and spirituality so this the best place to get some ideas, inspiration and set some new goals for coming home.
Every day we had an educational health talk by Dr Natasja Fox, who has written three books, helped hundreds of people and changed my life when I meet her three years ago. She talked to us about our GUT, adrenals, hormones and breaking the tired spiral. During these talks, the discussions and questions opened people up to wanting to change, to make new daily habits which supported a healthy life.

By the closing ceremony we had moved, meditated, learnt, shared, released, rested, laughed and supported each other on this journey. Everyone came with a different intention, a different need and a different way of pioneering their own perfect poison, but together we each left feeling committed to change, for me it was to reconnect, for others it was confidence, belief that they could do it, a commitment to grow and live better.

In the end, I left Ubud with the broken rose quartz in my hand but my real heart well on the way to being healed. After some discussion, instead of super gluing my crystal back together, I have decided to leave my rose quartz BE as is, we all have breaks in life, times when we feel lost, unhealthy, confused and on a merry go round that won’t end, my lesson from Bali, is that when you go back to basics and reconnect with your body, mind, food, people and Mother Earth, you can start to feel like its back on track.

WE ALL have the ability to make the CHANGE we need to live well and be well.