Almost a year has passed since the Mindful Nature retreat by Konectiv Wellness and I find myself still looking back on it fondly, carrying its teachings with me and feeling that sense of connection tingle every time I see the people I spent that weekend with.
The retreat had everything a retreat should – movement and breath, stillness and silence, the embrace of nature. And apart from throwing art into the mix, Konectiv offers space for something even more precious and restorative – connection. Now as we know it, connection cannot be forced. But it can be nurtured, given a safe environment to sprout. And when you show up as yourself, when you are present and unattached – to your devices, to the world, to your sense of self – you make space for the people around you to meet you as themselves too. That’s when true connection unfolds.
What is wellness, really? It is known as the practice of healthy habits, the upkeep of our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. To me, ‘wellness’ sounds like an oasis. A way to peace, an ideal that you can indulge in even in the least idealistic of situations, with practice. I think I found my way to it here first, on this retreat, when I felt such peace go hand in hand with one of my most turbulent times.
Connection is a part of wellness. Connection to nature, to the people around you, to yourself. It is healing. We heal when we are made space for, when we feel safe and loved, when we feel welcome. At Mindful Nature, everyone belongs. Even when you take a walk by yourself or slip away for a nap, you are still part of that circle. When you come back, it’s like you never left.
Konectiv’s Jude and Sala went to great lengths to host us for a weekend of digital detoxification, gentle asana, sacred geometry, sharing circles, walks through nature, end of year meditations and contemplation and let’s not forget food from the forest, in the most local, rustic yet comfortable location at the edge of the Sinharaja rainforest.
And while I am so grateful for all of that I believe wellness was granted to me in other ways. It was getting hit in the face by tree branches on the bumpy way there (nothing like nature’s tough love to beat the anxiety out of you and pull you into the present moment). It was in the safety and comfort I felt amongst people I was meeting for the first time, it was in the recommendation of a book, the silence and space for me to speak (as much as I struggle to) and the acceptance and understanding that followed after. It was in conscious conversation, in getting to know one another. It was in helping each other trek through the forest, in laughter and teaching each other how to draw the flower of life (you’ll understand when you’ve tried it). It was in the way we stayed connected and aware of each other’s needs without uttering a single word. It was in the bear hugs and a gentle forehead kiss goodbye and it was in the falling asleep next to my companions on the way back to normalcy.
I feel it still, whenever we come into contact.
Wellness is a gift, connection is a gift. Community is a gift. Gift them to yourself through Konectiv Wellness.