Last week I did something for myself. Like really for myself. I got on a plane and went on a solo retreat to improve my business and my life.
As a mom, this sounds stranger than saying I drank straight bleach.
The thing is, we mamas don’t do much for ourselves. Between the making of peanut butter sandwiches, the folding of laundry and working a job or side hustle , there isn’t really much time to dream about doing things for ourselves, let alone make them happen.
But by a strange coincidence of cosmic forces, for me, this time, it did.
I headed to Arkansas. (Yes, really. No, I didn’t get kidnapped by rednecks or learn to spit tobacco. But yes, I did hike a ravine that is home to quite a few copperhead snakes. Luckily, I didn’t know this until AFTER I emerged unscathed. I guess the snakes hibernate in February. My luck.)
In any case, Arkansas is the home of my mentor, Stephanie. It’s a bit of a long story how we met, but I’m a big believer in the universe bringing the right people together at the right time, and I’m eternally thankful that my path crossed hers.
Stephanie runs a lovely Airbnb retreat in the lower level of her home. I got to enjoy such un-momlike experiences as:
- Sleeping in a bed by myself. No wonderful (but snoring) husband. No lovable (but space-hogging) children.
- Eating meals whenever I felt like it.
- Drinking coffee on a deck overlooking the woods and ravine (which is very lovely even if it is home to the aforementioned snakes).
- Focusing on my business and where I’m headed.
Most of my days are spent with my nose to my calendar and to-do list. I get a lot done, but I always feel like there is never enough of me to go around. I am mom, wife, business owner, PTO president, and the list goes on. I am blessed to live such a full life, but more often than I’d like to admit, it leaves me feeling frazzled and without the thing I need to live my best life–perspective.
This retreat gave me a much-needed dose of that.
My time with Stephanie was like a 4-day conversation. We talked over oatmeal at breakfast, while her gray cat perched on my shoulders. We talked throughout much of the afternoon and into dinner. (And even though she claims to be a terrible cook, everything she made was delicious!)
I’ll be changing and re-focusing my business as a result of this time away. As much as I tell other people this, it is hard for me to accept that I really can’t do it all. I need to focus my time on my true talents, which means letting some things go, and Stephanie helped me see that.
In short, I came home refreshed, focused, and ready to live a better life.
I think we could all benefit from some of that.
So to all you mamas out there, entrepreneurs or not, I challenge you: get away. Even for just one night. Go do something by yourself, get your eyes off your phone and listen to your heart. Bring a wise friend, if you can. And I promise, you will watch your life get better.
And hey, if you’re interested in Arkansas, you can check out Stephanie’s AirBnB here.
Rose Lounsbury is a minimalism coach, speaker, and author of the Amazon bestseller “Less: Minimalism for Real.” After blogging about her own journey toward a minimalist lifestyle, Rose was inspired to start Less, a minimalism coaching company. Rose spends her days writing, helping clients clear their clutter, and soaking up the moments with her husband and their wild triplets. Rose is a regular guest on Fox News Good Day Columbus and has also been featured on NPR, Good Morning Cincinnati, and WDTN Living Dayton. She calls lovely Dayton, Ohio home. If you’d like to contact Rose for a speaking engagement or help with a minimizing project, you can email her at [email protected] or visit her online at RoseLounsbury.com.